American Libraries

Articles from Vol. 31, No. 5, May

1998-99 Year in Review
Educating the public about the importance of intellectual freedom and the role of the Internet in providing access to information was the major focus of the association's work during the 1998-99 fiscal year. Under the leadership of ALA President...
A Funny Thing Happened on the Way to the E-Book
Along with 500,000 of my nearest friends, within 24 hours after its publication I owned a copy of Riding the Bullet by Stephen King (if you've been living in a cave since late February, it's the first title by a major author to be issued exclusively...
Asian Pacific Americans Do Some Consciousness-Raising-Through Libraries
The Organization of Chinese Americans, a national nonprofit advocacy organization, takes on a public service project each year that typically has been a conventional one-day undertaking such as aiding a shelter for the homeless or pitching in at a...
Chapter Report: Investing in Low-Income Neighborhoods
I recently learned a new phrase to describe what happens when communities fail to provide adequate library services to people in poverty: "intellectual theft." The phrase belongs to educator and social activist Jonathan Kozol, who will be speaking...
County in Texas Orders Filters at All Its Libraries
Notwithstanding the legal advice of the county attorney and a no-filters resolution from library trustees, the Montgomery County, Texas, Commission has ordered library director Jerilynn Williams to install blocking software on every public-access computer...
Endeavor Purchase Met with Surprise, Concern
Dutch periodical and book publisher Elsevier Science made the surprise announcement April 7 that it had acquired Endeavor Information Systems, producers of the Voyager library management system. According to John Tagler, Elsevier Science's director...
Ending the Isolation of Poor People
Kathleen de la Pe[tilde{n}]a McCook The income disparity between rich people and poor people in the United States is astonishing. The average income of families in the top 20% of income distribution is 10 times as large as that, in the bottom 20%,...
Family Group Claims ALA Suppressed Porn Gripes
"Tomorrow the ALA will celebrate national Freedom of Information Day, even though they are trying to hinder free information from being reported on pornography access in libraries," Janet Parshall of the Family Research Council declared at a March...
Far from the Library A Special Set of Challenges
THE NEW TECHNOLOGY DOESN'T HELP MUCH WHEN IT COMES TO REACHING THE RURAL POOR Urban and rural poverty have been usually approached as separate and distinct problems in America, although as Earl Shorris points out in New American Blues: A Journey...
From Wood Pulp to the Web: The Online Evolution
EMERGING FROM THE PRIMEVAL PRINT-BASED SEAS, REFERENCE SOURCES TAKE TENTATIVE STEPS ONTO AN ELECTRONIC LANDSCAPE Something strange is going on in your library's reference section. As you read these words, key reference materials are evolving-and...
Ft. Worth PL Tornado Damages Top $1.2 Million
A tornado that slammed downtown Fort Worth, Texas, March 28 caused $1.2 million in damage to the exterior of the city's recently renovated Central Library and at least $400,000 in damages to the interior. The 113-mph winds blew in nearly all the...
Fy 1999-2000
FY 1999-2000 Total ALA Budgeted Revenues Miscellaneous 3% Contributions 3% Interest Income 3% Dues 18% Meetings & Conferences 25% Grants & Awards...
Global Reach
SPAIN With a click of the mouse, King Juan Carlos launched a bilingual effort to share historic materials on the settling of America. The king posted the first item, a 1562 map of the Western Hemisphere, on a new Web site (www.loc.gov/rr/hispanic/frontiers/splash.html)....
Goal 2000
Dear Colleagues Five years ago, the American Library Association adopted Goal 2000, an ambitious plan to position our organization, as well as libraries and librarians, as leaders in advocating for the public interest in today's burgeoning information...
Hooking Up the Homeless
The daunting task of assembling a group of articles that show the wide range of ways libraries serve poor people, as contributing editor Kathleen de la Pena McCook has done in this issue, reflects the difficulties we face in developing services that...
IMLS Honors 4 Libraries for Community Service
The Institute of Museum and Library Services (IMLS) presented its first annual National Awards for Library Service March 27 to the Simon Wiesenthal Center Library and Archives in Los Angeles; Urie Elementary School Library in Lyman, Wyoming; B. B....
Irving Given Madison Award at Freedom of Information Day
Larry Irving, former U.S. assistant secretary for the Department of Commerce, received ALA's James Madison Award for his work to identify and resolve the "digital divide" between computer haves and have-nots. The award, which recognizes efforts to...
Mattel Seeks to Keep CyberPatrol Code Secret
Twelve days after filing a lawsuit against two programmers who revealed the sites blocked by its popular Internet filtering software program CyberPatrol, toy company Mattel, which owns the Framingham, Massachusetts--based software firm that sells...
No Place to Go (except the Public Library)
IT IS IMPORTANT TO IDENTIFY AND REACH OUT TO THE HOMELESS PEOPLE IN YOUR SERVICE AREA Four people think about homelessness: * You're homeless. It's cold and wet out, you have no prospects for the day, and it's only 9 a.m. What do you do? For...
NYC Council Restores Library Funds
Leaders of the New York City Council released a proposed budget March 23 that would restore the $42 million that Mayor Rudolph Giuliani wants to cut from libraries. The alternative plan would also provide $30 million to maintain service increases...
Outstanding Reference Sources 2000
THE ANNUAL RECOMMENDATIONS OF DISTINGUISHED REFERENCE WORKS SELECTED BY REFERENCE LIBRARIANS Last January a group of dedicated librarians closeted themselves in a conference room over a three-day weekend to engage in the annual ritual of compiling...
People
Currents On March 1, Jeanne BauerNilsen became manager of western region branch services at the Public Library of Cincinnati and Hamilton County. * March 31 was retirement day for Roman Bohachevsky, who for the past 14 years has been director...
PLA Packs 'Em in at 8th National Conference in Charlotte, N.C
As the dogwood and azaleas bloomed in Charlotte, North Carolina, the Public Library Association's 8th National Conference March 28-April 1 blossomed into a record-breaking event for PLA with total conference attendance at 7,528, including 1,523 exhibitor...
Promoting the Humanities, Or: How to Make the Poor Dangerous
POOR PEOPLE WHO STUDY THE HUMANITIES WILL BE READY FOR THE LIBRARY. WILL THE LIBRARY BE READY FOR THEM? This fall, about 600 students, will enter the Clemente Course in the Humanities, an unconventional educational movement begun a few years ago...
Rupert Giles, the Professional-Image Slayer
GraceAnne DeCandido wrote in "Bibliographic Good vs. Evil in Buffy the Vampire Slayer" (AL, Sept. 1999, p. 44-47) that "the appearance of school librarian Rupert Giles on television's Buffy the Vampire Slayer has done more for the image of the profession...
The Best Things in Life Have Fees
ENHANCE YOUR IMAGE AND SERVICES-AND GET PAID FOR IT It's an American corporate paradox: A company known only by its Internet address has a greater value in the stock market than Sears and has never made a profit. Investors apparently agree that...
The Least of Our Brethren: Library Service to Prisoners
MONEY IS ALWAYS AVAILABLE FOR PUNISHUMENT, BUT WHAT ABOUT FOR CONVICTS' READING OR INTERNET USE? "Sin no more." (Motto of the New York Prison Association, 1844). "Next to labor, reading is the most valuable and extensive means of improvement."...
The Librarian and Mr. Jeeves
CAN LIBRARIANS AFFORD TO WORK 9-TO-5 WHEN THE INTERNET OFFERS REFERENCE SERVICE THAT NEVER CLOSES? Back in 1999, Intel CEO Andy Grove predicted, "Within five years, all businesses will be Internet businesses, or they won't be in business at all."...
This Month, 1,500 Years Ago
THE RULE OF ST. BENEDICT came into being after St. Benedict of Nursia founded his order in 529 at Monte Cassino, near Rome. Nearly a millennium-and-a-half ago, he decreed that daily sacred reading would henceforth be a duty of all monks. The rule...
Thus Said
"Imagine if a new craze suddenly came over from America called 'the library'. Inside were these things called 'books' about everything--encyclopaedias, great works of literature, children's stories, manuals, history books, more reading material than...
Treasurer's Report
The American Library Association ended Fiscal Year 1999 and enters the 21st century in a very strong financial position. The association continued to move forward with its aggressive agenda as detailed in New Visions: Beyond ALA Goal 2000 and is poised...
U.S. Periodical Prices-2000
FEW CHANGES ARE NOTED FOR THIS YEAR'S EDITION Publication of the 2000 U.S. Periodical Price Index represents the 40th annual study of this type sponsored by the Library Materials Price Index Committee (LMPIC) of the ALA's Association for Library...
U.S. Serial Services Price Index for 2000
PRICES ROSE 5.3% IN 1999 AS SHIFT TO ELECTRONIC PUBLICATIONS CONTINUES This is the 37th annual survey of U.S. Serial Services, a product of the ALA/ALCTS Library Materials Price Index Committee, working in conjunction with Faxon, RoweCom (formerly...
You There! Back in Your Box!
Buzzwords are like D bestsellers. When they're hot, they're very hot. When they've cooled, they're icy. Think of the buzzwords of the past few years--"empowerment," "reinventing," "pushing the envelope," "on the cutting edge," and "taking it to the...
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