Literary life and death

Bob Cox sent along This Story that takes a very different look at \"Double Fold: Libraries and the Assault on Paper\" by Nicholson Baker.
I know, you\'re probably about sick of hearing about this book, but this story is very different. The author worries that this influential book will lead us to consider the concept of the life cycle of literature in unhelpful ways.

\"Rather than join Baker in mourning the long dead, we should draw attention to and drum up support for efforts to keep books alive, if only momentarily.\"

The Filtering of America Online

Wired has this one about AOL and RuleSpace joining forces in implementing filtering software. Although civil liberties advocates are still skeptical, RuleSpace and AOL report that the filter has been working well due to content recognition technology, parental controls and user feedback. Proponents feel that if AOL is using it, it has to be good.

Censorship in Cartoons

Lee Hadden writes: \"Many of the cartoons
produced before 1950 used and satirized racial and
ethnic stereotypes. In an article in Friday\'s Wall Street
Journal, May 4,
2001, first page, \"Bunny in Blackface: Why Cartoon
Network Won\'t Run 12 Bugs
Pix: Its Plans for a June Retrospective Sparked
Concerns Over Taste; Two
Agendas Inside AOL.\"
Some of the Bugs Bunny cartoons produced during
World War II showed
racial and ethnic stereotypes against the Japanese and
Germans. Other Bugs
Bunny cartoons showed racial stereotypes and
demeaning situations that are
offensive to today\'s sensibilities.
The owners of the original Bugs Bunny cartoons did
not want these
offensive cartoons shown, even for historical
representations and
retrospective reviews. The control over the cartoons is
slipping, as is the
censorship efforts to prevent their being seen.
Read more about it in the Wall Street Journal.\"

You should be able to see some of them Here at Throttlebox.com

Emerging Technologies That Will Change Public Libraries

John Guscott says his report you may have seen here
before was updated on May
1 and has doubled in length.
Read the full report for an interesting look
into the future. They\'ve selected crucial technologies
that public library administrators, trustees, managers
and professionals should be watching.
Teleservice
Next Generation Online Publishing
Language and Translation Software
And several more.

Library cat attacks assistance dog

Alert reader Charles Davis sent along This Story from
ananova.com on a
man that filed a $1.5 million claim against a
California city, after a cat who lives in the public library
allegedly attacked
his dog.
The cat was apparently uninjured.
The cat is featured on the
library\'s
website
, and even has it\'s own FAQ. They say it\'s usually lounging on
bookshelves or cabinets
and is popular with the library\'s readers.
The man says his assistance dog was attacked by
LC moments after they entered the library in
Escondido.MGTC passed along Two more Stories on the same thing.
I don\'t quite know what to say on this one, some
animals just get along like, well, cats and dogs.

Nicholson Baker\'s Predjudices

Lee Hadden writes \"While many librarians and
library supporters have criticized Nicholson
Baker\'s attack on library stewardship in his book
\"Double Fold,\" few have
picked up on his sartorial prejudices against male
librarians wearing
bowties. A recent article in the Wall Street Journal on
May 4, 2001, on page
W17 by Joseph Epstein, \"Fit to be Tied: The Enemies of
Civilization Find a
New Target, Just Below the Chin.\" describes and
illustrates this prejudice
agaisnt bowties.


Mr. Epstein notes that Mr. Baker \"...seems to have his
villains neatly
turned out in bowties: A man named Verner Clapp is a
\"polymathic bowtie
wearer,\" and the historian and former Librarian of
Congress Daniel Boorstein
is described as a \"chronic bowtie wearer.\"


If Mr. Baker is mistrustful of male librarians simply
because they wear
bowties, then he is seeing a trend to maybe match the
old stereotype of the
female librarian in hairbun, breastwatch, and reading
glasses on a string of
fake pearls, finger poised to go \"Shush!\" I am thus
tempted to join the ranks
and change my work uniform to something more in
keeping with guild
guidelines. I might trade in my four-in-ones for the
Daniel Moyniham look.
But then, I might not.\"

Exit Gutenberg ?

The Atlantic Monthly has a Story on eBook World conference in New York. They say the consensus from the conference was that digital delivery of most \"print\" is inevitable. I guess only time will tell if they were right.

Out of Print, But Into Digital from Wired, takes a look at octavo.com a company that uses digital technology to capture images of rare books, manuscripts and other materials on CD-ROMs.
Seems like a more useful eBook for now.

The Library Buildings Boom

LA Times Story on the new Central Library and the name that is stiring up some Controversy.

The Story from Seattle is a bit different, it mostly focuses on the team designing the new Central Library. The library is busy evolving even before it gets built.

Hopefully to avoid The Mess in Paris. The new National Library which has \"stupendously impractical architecture\", a large stairway that is slippery in the rain and open to the winds, awkwardly structured spaces for both researchers and staff, impractically situated toilets and so on.

Wanted: Loveable Hero for Copyright Battle

Lisa Bowman writes...
Groups such as the American Civil Liberties Union, American Library Association and EFF have been wildly successful overturning crackdowns on Internet content, including the Communications Decency Act. But so far, they\'ve been on the losing side of battles to protect free speech in the face of corporate copyright owners seeking unprecedented digital privileges--battles such as the DeCSS case. [more...] from ZDNet.

American Copyright Initiative Goes Eurpoean

John McNaughton writes... \"The RIAA is so obsessed with the supposed threat of the internet to its members\' prosperity, it is prepared to go to unbelievable lengths to stamp out that threat. Readers of this column will be aware that the RIAA is suing a US magazine for publishing the code of a small computer program called DeCSS that unscrambles DVD files so that Linux users can play their own disks. What is perhaps less well known is that a company that prints the DeCSS code on a T-shirt is also being sued. Sooner or later, free societies are going to have to rein in the pretensions and power of the RIAA. If this nonsense isn\'t stopped, the days when you could do what you please with your own hard disk are numbered.\"
[more...] from The Observer.

All Your Books Are Belong To Us

\"Your libraries are on the way to destruction,\" claimed the enemy cataloger. \"You have no chance to survive make your time. HA HA HA HA ....\" Solution? Take off every \"zig\"!! Move zig. For great justice.

Mitch Freedman elected ALA President, says \'First Daughter\'

Mitch Freedman has won the ALA election, says First Daughter Jenna Freedman (a librarian in New Rochelle, NY). An email sent this afternoon to friends and other supporters read:

\"The President-Elect apologizes for not sending this message out himself; he\'s got a work thing he can\'t get out of at the moment. Feel free to pass the news along to people whose e-mail addresses I don\'t have on me... And someone call Sandy!\"

Read on for the estimated vote count... -- Read More

A Google of Google Stories

Research Buzz says that the Usenet archives are back. You can now search back to May 1995 and find all the old stupid things you said. Google Groups

Techreview has a Story on the next generation of smart search engines.

Wired has A Look at Monika Henzinger, the director of research at Google, and her life as a \"woman\".She says, \"I\'m a scientist. I really think of myself as a scientist.\"

The Anatomy of a Large-Scale Hypertextual Web Search Engine is everything you ever wanted to know on the subject.

InternetWeek takes A Look at google\'s guts. They have about 8,000 servers, had 10.9 million unique visitors in March, has indexed 1.3 Web billion pages on over a petabyte of storage, and does it all on Linux.

Some Thoughts on the Digital Divide

As the growth of the online population continues upward, the digital divide is narrowing and reasons for being outside of the e-arena may now be more a result of choosing to remain there. [more...] from The Columbus Dispatch.

Knowing What We\'re Walling In or Walling Out

Art Wolinsky has written A Look at filtering in the current MultiMedia Schools.

He says a possible private sector class-action lawsuit being considered against one or more filtering companies is not aimed at the legislation, and this would send ripples throughout the filtering industry and have significant impact on filtering decisions, and maybe they would then work better.

Library Thievary

Charles Davis sent in this Story library officials at the Quincy public library in MA, discovered a stained-glass window
worth a minimum of $100,000 is missing and was apparently stolen in January. The thief removed the entire frame containing the window that has been on display since
1883 in the H.H. Richardson building of the Thomas Crane Public Library.


In Better News from IA, -- A thief who lifted 452 compact discs and six digital video discs from Hayner Public Library, then pawned them at two shops, was caught, and the loot recovered.

Ya win some, ya lose some.

Censorship fears as Alexandria library is rebuilt

Charles Davis sent in This Story on the Biblioteca
Alexandrina.
It opens today after, two decades in the
making, today\'s opening to academics and journalists ahead of the formal ceremony in
October has been overshadowed by a row over censorship which is
threatening libraries and bookshops across the country.
See
unesco.org
for more info. as well.

\"Under mounting pressure from Islamists, President Mubarak has urged government officials to press ahead with a strict censorship regime against works deemed offensive to Islam. Bookshops, book fairs and public libraries are frequently raided by government censors.\"

Classic and Neo- Information

This week\'s Library Juice has an editorial called Classic and neo- information, about how the concept of information has changed without much notice, and about the implications of the change. Classic information is what\'s found in reference materials (for example), and neo-information includes anything that can be carried by an electronic signal. Values that apply to classic information are being used to support neo-information, and the failure to make the distinction has contributed to confusion about librarianship\'s future.

Let the Stories Go

Lawrence Lessig wrote an interesting OP-ED Piece at the NY Times on how silly copyright law is getting. Congress has extended the term of existing copyrights 11 times in the past 40 years. Current copyright law says the term is the life of the author — plus 70 years.

He says \"At some point, every story — and certainly one like this — should be free for others to use and criticize.\"

More on The Wind Done Gone

Salon has a lengthy Story on \"The Wind Done Gone\", the book that was ruled to infringe on \"Gone With the Wind\". The argument here boils down to if the book is a parody or an unauthorized, unlicensed (and therefore illegal) sequel. The judge ruled \"The Wind Done Gone\" is simultaneously not enough about \"Gone With the Wind\" and too much like it. The judge said the \"extensive copying\" in \"The Wind Done Gone\" \"usurps the original\'s right to create its own sequel.\"

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