American Libraries

Articles from Vol. 42, No. 3-4, March-April

ALA and Wiki1Leaks
One of the key problems of our time is a lack of government transparency that restricts access to public information in the United States. The ongoing WikiLeaks disclosures highlight the need to protest these policies. Several of the American Library...
American Libraries' Transition
Welcome to the March/April 2011 issue of American Libraries. While a national search moves ahead for a successor to former Editor and Publisher Leonard Kniffel, George Eberhart and Beverly Goldberg will share the role of interim editor-in-chief. We...
Approachable You: Aren't You Looking at Me?
I am not a behavioral psychologist but it seems to me the most basic element of establishing a connection with someone is making eye contact. Take my granddaughter, Sophia. She's 3 years old and is always the most popular person wherever she goes because...
Building a Culture of Literacy through Dia
A group of children gather in the children's area to listen to a story. At first glance, this could be a program occurring any day of the week in any library across the country. However, it is April 30, and the children are enjoying books like Book...
Community: Anchors: 2011 Library Design Showcase
On the following pages are excerpts from the 2011 Library Design Showcase. See more new and renovated buildings at americanlibrariesmagazine.org/librarydesign11. American Libraries will also publish a digital supplement in April that will include articles...
Discovering the Nature Explorium: Learning in the Out-of-Doors as Part of a Library Visit
Libraries, which are always searching for new ways to connect with their communities, have offered reading gardens and outdoor storytelling to foster a connection with nature and the environment. Today, via a library's outdoor learning space, librarians...
Engaging Young Members: Executive Board Tackles Business during Midwinter Meeting
ALA Executive Board meetings in San Diego focused on how to engage younger members, the ALA Membership Meeting, and the Midwinter Meeting itself. At the top of the list was a report from the Young Professionals Task Force, chaired by Laurel Bliss....
Global Reach
CANADA 1 Students at the University of Calgary in Alberta face significant delays this spring and summer in accessing some books at the new $180-million Taylor Family Digital Library because of a design flaw in the building's climate-control mechanism....
Hope Springs Eternal: The Garden of Children's Literature Is Always in Bloom
At this writing, the world outside my window resembles a snow globe. Despite lingering wintery conditions, I'm thinking of spring. Not just because I've tromped through the snow to see what's happening to my garden. I've also been talking with Keiko...
How the World Sees Us
"Locate two bookstores in a shopping mall and it is applauded as an example of the competitive marketplace at work. One presumes greater merchandise selection, better service, lower prices, etc. Locate two public libraries near each other, and howls...
Learning Terrace to Embed Library throughout Drexel Campus
A new library facility at Drexel University in Philadelphia is "the first step toward embedding the libraries across campus," according to Dean of Libraries Danuta Nitecki. The 3,000-square-foot Library Learning Terrace will be located on the ground...
Let's Not Borrow Trouble: E-Book Collection Development Requires New Considerations
At my library. I'm in charge of collection development for our largest academic division. Sometimes I find the task daunting as I struggle to find a balance between buying things that will likely get used today and anticipating what might be needed...
Librarians Sing the E-Book Blues
The biblioblogosphere, the Twitterverse, and even some traditional media erupted with indignation over a decision by publishing giant HarperCollins to change its terms of service for libraries' e-book lending rights. It began with a February 24...
Libraries and Mobile Services: It's Time for the Profession to Think Small
Mobile devices are ubiquitous in today's society, and there's no evidence that that is going to change. According to the Pew Internet and American Life Project, as of mid-2010, 82% of American adults own a mobile phone or a mobile computing device...
Lost and Found: Vignettes from the Frontiers of Modern Life
At dinner the other night with friends, we learned that their eldest daughter, a college sophomore, had had her boyfriend visit for a few days over the holidays. The visit went fine, or so it seemed, and then the relationship ended, abruptly and unexpectedly....
Maureen Sullivan: Candidate for ALA President
Visit maureensullivan.org This is a time of great opportunity and challenge for libraries, librarians, and library staff. While those who fund and govern libraries often ask questions about the value of what we do and how we contribute to our communities,...
Midwinter Meeting Looks to Its Evolution: Youth Media Awards, Actor Ted Danson, and Dozens of Guest Speakers Share the Spotlight in San Diego, While Governance Plans the Meeting's Future Role
Over the past decade, the combination of technological change and economic stress has caused many members to question the way in which ALA groups accomplish work," states A White Paper on the. ALA Midwinter Meeting, prepared by Executive Director Keith...
Must We Abide? Libraries Should Push the License Agreement Envelope
More and more, publishers, database providers, and other corporate content proprietors are taking steps to replace the traditional benefits of ownership with the rigorously controlled provisions of licensing. Known as terms of sale (TOS) or end-user...
Newsmaker: Christine Wigfall Morris
Christine Wigfall Morris, affectionately known as Miss Chris, was hired by the City of Clearwater, Florida, in July 1949 as its first African-American librarian. Prior to working for the city, she had never been inside a public library because local...
One Librarian's Takeaway from the Consumer Electronics Show
While ALA Midwinter 2011 was starting in beautiful San Diego, 1 was on a plane to a different, but equally sunny destination--Las Vegas--to attend the 2011 International Consumer Electronics Show ... me, and 160,000 others. CES is the largest consumer...
Partners in Community Enhancement: A New Branch Library Emerges from an Innovative Partnership
When resources are shrinking, funding is scarce, and businesses are folding, finding partners to help realize goals is not just an interesting concept but a necessity. To provide support services to formerly homeless individuals and families, many...
Petition Candidates Seek Council Post
In addition to the published ALA Council candidates (AL, Nov./Dec. 2010, p. 14-15), individuals who have petitioned to be included on the ballot are: * Rosina Alaimo, librarian, Maple West Elementary School, Williamsville, New York * Mary Biblo,...
Sue Stroyan: Candidate for ALA President
Leading from Libraries My passion for libraries began with my first job at the age of 16 as a page in a public library. That experience was the first step in my more than 35-yearlong journey through positions in all types of libraries: public, special,...
The Little Library That Could: The Aloha Spirit Keeps a Volunteer-Run Library Alive
Inspiring libraries are often the ones with big budgets. They have impressive buildings, enormous collections, and large staffs. The Makiki Community Library in Honolulu, Hawaii, has none of these things, but that doesn't make it any less remarkable....
This Old Library: Transforming Existing Libraries into Sustainable Structures
Sustainable building construction is the major issue facing the architectural profession in the United States as well as around the world. Consider the implications of ignoring it: At present, 300 million people living in the United States comprise...
Transforming Libraries: Meeting the Needs of Members and Their Institutions
A key goal of the 2011--2015 ALA strategic plan is to provide leadership in the transformation of libraries and library services for today's dynamic and increasingly global digital information environment. Virtually every media interview I've had during...
Wallander's Last Stand
Readers whose knowledge of Scandinavian crime fiction goes beyond Stieg Larsson know that it was Henning Mankell who jump-started what has developed into a nearly 20-year golden age. The very fact that Sweden could foster a new spin on the Chandlerian...