The board of a West Virginia library reverses decision to refuse ‘Fear’

Connie Perry, the president of the trustees of the Morgan County Public Library in Berkeley Springs, W.Va., said Friday afternoon by phone that her town library will carry Bob Woodward’s “Fear.” Perry said the library board did not know that the library director had refused to accept a donated copy of “Fear” until the issue was raised in media reports. “The board didn’t know anything about this,” Perry said. “We have corrected that. The book has been accepted — in fact, two of them.”
From The board of a West Virginia library reverses decision to refuse ‘Fear’ - The Washington Post
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Opinion | To Restore Civil Society, Start With the Library - The New York Times

But the problem that libraries face today isn’t irrelevance. Indeed, in New York and many other cities, library circulation, program attendance and average hours spent visiting are up. The real problem that libraries face is that so many people are using them, and for such a wide variety of purposes, that library systems and their employees are overwhelmed. According to a 2016 survey conducted by the Pew Research Center, about half of all Americans ages 16 and over used a public library in the past year, and two-thirds say that closing their local branch would have a “major impact on their community.”
From Opinion | To Restore Civil Society, Start With the Library - The New York Times
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Neil Gaiman and Chris Riddell on why we need libraries – an essay in pictures

Neil Gaiman and Chris Riddell on why we need libraries – an essay in Two great champions of reading for pleasure return to remind us that it really is an important thing to do – and that libraries create literate citizens
From Neil Gaiman and Chris Riddell on why we need libraries – an essay in pictures | Books | The Guardian
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Every Book Tour Should Include a Public School

In my rare calm moments as a curator (when I’m not sending a hundred emails or moving a hundred chairs), I often reflect that the literary world should make greater efforts to reach teenagers, and more high schools should promote contemporary literature by living authors. How else will we build the next generation of literary readers? Writers need young people. Sigrid Nunez agreed. “I don’t think most people realize how much you can learn about the world from listening to young adults.”
From Every Book Tour Should Include a Public School | Literary Hub
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EU and national funders launch plan for free and immediate open access to journals

EU and national funders launch plan for free and immediate open access to journals The architect of ‘Plan-S’, Robert-Jan Smits, hopes to force a major change in the business model of academic publishers. The effect will be similar to the abolition of mobile phone roaming charges in Europe, he says
From EU and national funders launch plan for free and immediate open access to journals | Science|Business
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Lou Reed’s Archive, Coming to the New York Public Library

Anderson, from the beginning, wanted people to have access to the complete collection, and wanted much of it digitized and made available online. So she and Fleming reached out to the performing-arts library, which has extensive music collections and artists’ archives. “We were really impressed with the performing-arts people,” Anderson said.
From Lou Reed’s Archive, Coming to the New York Public Library | The New Yorker
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Why the Future of Data Storage is (Still) Magnetic Tape

It’s true that tape doesn’t offer the fast access speeds of hard disks or semiconductor memories. Still, the medium’s advantages are many. To begin with, tape storage is more energy efficient: Once all the data has been recorded, a tape cartridge simply sits quietly in a slot in a robotic library and doesn’t consume any power at all. Tape is also exceedingly reliable, with error rates that are four to five orders of magnitude lower than those of hard drives. And tape is very secure, with built-in, on-the-fly encryption and additional security provided by the nature of the medium itself. After all, if a cartridge isn’t mounted in a drive, the data cannot be accessed or modified. This “air gap” is particularly attractive in light of the growing rate of data theft through cyberattacks.
From Why the Future of Data Storage is (Still) Magnetic Tape - IEEE Spectrum
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A neuroscientist explains what tech does to the reading brain

Why is it zero-sum, though? Surely it’s good to be able to skim when needed. Why does one take away from the other? This is a question that requires a very careful attempt at explanation. It’s not zero-sum, but we have grown used to skimming. People like you and me who spend six to 12 hours a day on a screen are led to use the skimming mode even when we know we should use a more concentrated, focused mode of reading. It’s an idea I call “cognitive patience.” I believe we are all becoming unable to take the time to be patient because skimming has bled over into most of our reading.
From A neuroscientist explains what tech does to the reading brain - The Verge
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Is Literature Dead?

This, in an elliptical way, is what Noah was getting at. How do things stick to us in a culture where information and ideas are up so quickly that we have no time to assess one before another takes its place? How does reading maintain its hold on our imagination, or is that question even worth asking anymore? Noah may not be a reader, but he is hardly immune to the charms of a lovely sentence; a few weeks after our conversation at the dinner table, he told me he had finished The Great Gatsby and that the last few chapters had featured the most beautiful writing he’d ever read. “Yes, of course,” I told him, pleased at the observation, but I couldn’t help thinking back to our earlier talk about the novel, which had ended with Noah standing up and saying, in a tone as blunt as a lance thrust: “This is why no one reads anymore.”
From Is Literature Dead?
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Man discovers mother’s ‘classified’ murder case in Montreal library

Roxanne Luce, 36, was found on her bed the next morning and died in a hospital days later. Thirty-seven years later, the case remains unsolved. Last year, Luce founded a non-profit called Meurtres et Disparitions Irrésolus du Québec, bringing together families affected by cold cases.
From Man discovers mother’s ‘classified’ murder case in Montreal library | Montreal Gazette
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How Frankenstein and Its Writer Mary Shelley Created the Horror Genre

The fact that these big questions still inform the social implications of science in the 21st century is a key reason that the popularity of Mary Shelley’s story has only grown over time. Since its first publication, the book has never been out of print. Stage productions of the story followed as early as 1822. In the 20th century dozens of films told and retold the Frankenstein story. The most iconic version was produced by Universal Pictures in 1931 and starred Boris Karloff in what became his signature role.
From How Frankenstein and Its Writer Mary Shelley Created the Horror Genre
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People of Color, Especially Children, Most Likely to be Asked to Leave Seattle Libraries

African Americans, especially children, are far more likely to be kicked out of Seattle libraries than patrons of other races, according to data the South Seattle Emerald obtained from the Seattle Public Library (SPL) through a public disclosure request. Between January and July 2018, more than a third of patrons who received “exclusions” (notices, which can be verbal, that a patron cannot return to the library for a period ranging from a partial day to two years) were African American. Of 764 exclusions that included information about a patron’s race (61 did not include this information and have been excluded from this analysis), 33.4 percent (or just over one third) were African American; 7.5 percent were Hispanic or Latino; 55.5 percent were white; and the rest were another race.
From People of Color, Especially Children, Most Likely to be Asked to Leave Seattle Libraries | South Seattle Emerald
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Technology hasn't killed public libraries – it's inspired them to transform and stay relevant

Critically and most revealingly, libraries are evaluated based on traditional metrics, such as loan and membership numbers, capturing only a fraction of the full value they contribute to our individual and collective life. Failure to recognise this by governments and policymakers puts at risk the diverse and nuanced ways libraries might shape Australia’s future.
From Technology hasn't killed public libraries – it's inspired them to transform and stay relevant
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The Story For The New Logo from The Library of Congress

The logo combines the condensed name (“Library”) set in Druk Condensed Super and the full name in Sharp Grotesk 20, all in one lockup that can appear in various configurations. The versatile arrangement is the basis for a cohesive system for the Library’s many sub-brands and affiliate programs. The identity will be implemented across all Library communications, including books, the bimonthly LCM magazine, institutional brochures and newsletters, signage and exhibition graphics, and the website.
From Library of Congress — Story — Pentagram

A Running Tally of Items People Have Asked For At The Circ Desk

Today someone handed me a Costco card. For what purpose? To check out books, of course! This is the fourth time in my illustrious library career that this has happened. In honor of this brave soul (who owes me 600 Costco-sized boxes of Kraft macaroni and cheese and a legit flight of boxed wines if they try this again), I present to you a collection of interesting items people have asked for at the circulation desk:
From Buddy, the Library Isn't a 7-Eleven | Literary Hub
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How an Artist Is Rebuilding a Baghdad Library Destroyed During the Iraq War

“168:01,” as the project by Iraqi-American artist Wafaa Bilal is titled, is a stark white display featuring bookshelves filled with 1,000 blank books. Visitors are encouraged to replenish the volumes with titles from an Amazon wish list compiled by the college’s students and faculty; donations can be made by sending the books on the wish list to the museum, or by gifting funds to the project through Bilal’s website. In exchange for their donations, visitors are able to take home one of the exhibition’s white volumes that represent a rich cultural heritage stripped bare by years of conflict. In turn, the colorful books they contributed to the project will ultimately be sent to the College of Fine Arts.
From How an Artist Is Rebuilding a Baghdad Library Destroyed During the Iraq War | Smart News | Smithsonian
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The Complexity of Simply Searching For Medical Advice

There’s an asymmetry of passion at work. Which is to say, there’s very little counter-content to surface because it simply doesn’t occur to regular people (or, in this case, actual medical experts) that there’s a need to produce counter-content. Instead, engaging blogs by real moms with adorable children living authentic natural lives rise to the top, stating that doctors are bought by pharma, or simply misinformed, and that the shot is risky and unnecessary. The persuasive writing sounds reasonable, worthy of a second look. And since so much of the information on the first few pages of search results repeats these claims, the message looks like it represents a widely-held point of view. But it doesn’t. It’s wrong, it’s dangerous, and it’s potentially deadly.
From The Complexity of Simply Searching For Medical Advice | WIRED
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An Experiment In Asking Questions That Mostly Failed. Twice.

In this article I’m going to tell you about five places to ask questions on the Internet. And hopefully you’ll get better answers than I did! I do think these are great places to ask questions, but I don’t know if I ask terrible questions, or since I’m asking at the beginning of the summer my timing is bad, or something else.
From An Experiment In Asking Questions That Mostly Failed. Twice. – ResearchBuzz
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Family claims win in high court challenge to library cuts

A young girl and her family who took on Northamptonshire county council over its plans to close 21 libraries have claimed a win in the high court, after a judge ruled that the cash-strapped council would have to revisit its plans while “paying attention to its legal obligations”.
From Family claims win in high court challenge to Northants library cuts | Books | The Guardian
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The Relevance of Bookmobiles and Mobile Libraries in 2018

Fast forward thirty years. The magic of the bookmobile remains. But the magic has evolved. Whereas the bookmobile of my youth was a place for my imagination to run amok (and today’s bookmobiles still provide this outlet for all), bookmobiles today have changed the way a library connects to the people it serves. Bookmobiles today serve a more effectual purpose than before—but that is not to say bookmobiles of my youth were ineffectual. As a valued part of any library’s arsenal, bookmobiles today help to disseminate information, erase barriers, and equalize opportunity for all patrons—much like in the past, only in different guises today. Bookmobiles today have spawned other mobile outreach vehicles: vans, buses, campers, bicycles, and scooters; and it is within all these different vehicles that a new type of outreach has developed.
From The Relevance of Bookmobiles and Mobile Libraries in 2018 » Public Libraries Online
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