A detective story without a detective

The Chicago Tribune has a cool Book Review of \"The Grand Complication\" By Allen Kurzweill. Check It Out, sounds like a book a librarian could really enjoy.

\"It takes us inside the mind of a librarian to see the world according to the Dewey Decimal System.
Alexander Short, the protagonist-narrator, lives to categorize. His impulse is to reduce experience to a series of lists.\"

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eMail Turns 30

Props to Slashdot for telling us eMail is now 30 years old!

Yahoo News has a nice Little Story, and Pretext.com has Another One. Check out w3history.org for a history of the Web or dejavu.org for another look at some interesting web history. Hobbes\' Internet Timeline covers the entire Internet, not just the webbie side of things.

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ACLU Condemns Revised Anti-Terrorism Legislation

Existing surveillance measures are sufficient, the American Civil Liberties Union contends. Here is an excerpt from their statement that relates to patron confidentiality:

Under current law, a law enforcement agent can get a pen register or trap and trace order requiring the telephone company to reveal the numbers dialed to and from a particular phone. It must simply certify that the information to be obtained is \"relevant to an ongoing criminal investigation.\" This is a very low level of proof, far less than probable cause. The judge must grant the order upon receiving the certification. The new bill would extend this low threshold of proof to Internet communications that are far more revealing than numbers dialed on a phone. For example, it would apparently apply to law enforcement efforts to determine what websites a person had visited. This is like giving law enforcement the power - based only on its own certification -- to require the librarian to report on the books you had perused while visiting the public library. This is extending a low standard of proof -- far less than probable cause -- to \"content\" information (emphasis added.)

More.

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Salon Begins to Charge for News, Political Coverage

Reuters reports that Salon.com will make you pay for
access to much of its content.
\"Salon.com had started charging for some of its stories and
features on its sites, but now \"virtually all\" its news and politics
items -- two areas the publisher has gained prominence for --
will be for a fee. A one-year subscription costs $30. \"

Full Story

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FTC Shuts Thousands of Deceptive Web Sites

From Reuters - The FTC shut down more than 5,500 sites and
domain names that grab you and won\'t let you go. But...they haven\'t
found the known suspect yet and he starts new sites as fast the FTC
shuts
them down.

Full Story

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What of Childrens Library Cards

The great and mysterious Ender writes :\"I was watching
Hearts in Atlantis, and it appears they used
to have children\'s/adult\'s library cards. What ever
happened to this
neat ability? It was apparently not limited by age, but
minors had to get parent\'s permission. Which puts parents
in control of which class
of books their kids could check out (but the kids could
probably read
anything *at* the library).


Seems like this would be a great help, instead of banning
books, parents could choose when and how to give access to
their
children

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Egypt Opens $230 Million Library

From ALEXANDRIA, Egypt the AP has this story about the trial
opening of the Biblioteca Alexandrina. Photo
here.

Full Story

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No Plague of Banned Books

entertainmentnewsdaily.com is running a Story that says never have more books by more authors on more subjects been more readily available to more people, and Banned Books Week is ALA hype.


\"In short, the fanatics and book-burners against whom Banned Books Week is meant to keep us vigilant are mostly parents who raise questions about their kids\' reading material. In the world according to the American Library Association, moms and dads are the enemy.\"

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More than 2,800 books miscataloged by school librarian

I\'m not sure what to make of This One. A Hamilton County, IL, librarian doesn\'t seem to be able to catalog, so they hired her an assistant. The librarian is the wife of a superintendent and the assistant is the wife of a local mayor.

\"So far I have found 2800 books that have either been miscataloged or have incomplete card sets,\" said McKinnis. \"I haven\'t been through every one yet, but most new books that have been cataloged are not consistent with our senior high library or even most college libraries.\"

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Near a library now vacant, a sports complex will rise

Sunspot.net has a Sad Story on a decision to spend $250,000 to build a family sports complex on in Baltimore, MD. The sports complex will be located three blocks from the old Pimlico branch of the Enoch Pratt Free Library. That library branch was shut down just weeks ago. The city said it did not have the $290,000 budgeted to keep it open.

\"A library branch that was a community bulwark for 40 years is shut down for lack of money; and, just three blocks away, similar money is approved for a sports center to keep kids\' bodies occupied while their minds are regarded as afterthoughts.\"

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Focus on the Family attacks ALA\'s banned books week

stuart yeates writes \"
CNS news is carrying an article about how Focus on the Family is calling the ALA\'s Banned books week hypocrisy. There\'s also an article on the Focus on the Family web site. \"

From the story:
\"The issue, however, is really just a matter of who gets to choose the books. When librarians or the American Library Association, for example, decide what is appropriate for library shelves, it is called selection. \"

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Sklyarov Retains High Profile Attorney

DMCA victim Dmitri Sklyarov has hired attorney John Keker (famous for his prosecution of Oliver North during the Iran-Contra scandal) to represent him:

Keker\'s decision to represent Sklyarov, believed to be one of the first to be criminally charged under the Digital Millennium Copyright Act, could put an end to speculation that a plea deal is in the works.

Keker of Keker & Van Nest won\'t say whether any plea offers are on the table but said he wasn\'t brought aboard to cut a deal.

\"They are always welcome to dismiss the case, but we didn\'t come in to make a plea deal,\" Keker said Thursday. \"We are here to deal with the defense of the case and to win it.\"

More from law.com. Thanks to Slashdot.

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Library of Congress May Acquire Important Country Music Collection

The Library of Congress is courting unofficial country archivist and American original Leon Kagarise:

The tiny frame house is cluttered from floor to ceiling with a lifetime\'s leavings. Leon Kagarise buried treasure beneath his mounds of junk, guarding it with a collector\'s obsessive ardor. After 40 years, he finally has let the world in on his secret, a trove of American cultural history . . .

In a living room darkened by teetering towers of records, mounds of clothes and a tangle of wires, Kagarise has assembled a rickety shrine to his beloved country and bluegrass music. From the late 1950s through the mid-1960s, the electronics whiz privately recorded and photographed country stars at the top of their game. By the time he stopped, he had amassed 5,000 hours of music and nearly 1,000 color slides. Then he stowed it all away.

Now, as word of his cache makes its way from collectors to record companies to archivists, the suburban Baltimore retiree has become an unlikely legend. Record executives have made offers. The Library of Congress has come courting. What makes Kagarise\'s stockpile such an intoxicating prize, they all say, is more than its vast breadth and its near-pristine sound quality. It provides a front-row seat on a vanished world . . .

More from the San Francisco Chronicle. Too bad they\'ll never get Joe Bussard\'s collection.

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Association of American Publishers: Turn in Sklyarovs for $$

The Association of American Publishers is offering a reward for \"information leading to a criminal arrest, criminal conviction, civil fine, or other penalty in association with piracy of American books, journals, and other AAP member products.\"

More information is available here. To be fair, it remains to be seen how this will relate to electronic publishing and the DMCA, though AAP\'s statements to date do not bode well. Hats off as usual to Politech.

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Librarians pushing to get \'Forever\' back on shelves

Another book banning story. This time from the Chicago Daily
Herald.

Anna Johnson writes:
\"Two years after Eastview Middle School librarian Joan Devine lost
a close and heated battle to reverse Elgin Area School District U-46\'s
1997 decision to ban Judy Blume\'s \"Forever,\" she\'s back on the
battlefield again. But this time, Devine will not be fighting the
district\'s book banning alone.\"
Full Story

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Contentville.com Shutters Web Site

From AP, Contentville.com has closed. Couldn\'t get enough users.

Full Story

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Law librarian a valued resource

The Deseret Sun has a nice story about Pat Stewart, the
law librarian for Riverside County’s Law Library in Utah.

\"The soft-spoken 74-year-old grandmother and
greatgrandmother, who also holds a pilot’s license, became Indio’s
law librarian after deciding to make a career change and enrolling in
a paralegal program...\"
Full Story

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A Web Site With the Inside Dope on the Middle East...

From the New York Observer, information about:
\"a
Jerusalem-based Web site that offers Middle Eastern military,
diplomatic and intelligence information far more detailed (and
frightening) than what is offered by many news organizations.\"
The link is Debka.com
Full
Story

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Librarian read riot act for pacifist stance

In this story from the Oregonian, we learn about librarian,
Miss Hunt,
who stood her ground during World War I. She worked for the
Library Association of Portland, now the Multnomah County Library
John Terry writes:
\"All citizens were under pressure to assign money, and public
employees were instructed it was public duty to commit part of their
paychecks.

Louise Hunt thought otherwise. She was a pacifist and made no secret
of it.

Anonymous word of her refusal inspired the drive\'s chieftains to
furious scorn. A delegation was dispatched to Hunt\'s boss, head
librarian Isom, to demand Hunt either be commanded to duty or
dismissed.\"

Full
Story

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Ethiopian University Plans to Expand Library Facilities

The Institute of Ethiopian Studies at Addis Ababa University has begun a fundraising campaign to finance the construction of a badly needed new library:

The Institute of Ethiopian Studies on Monday September 24, 2001 held a pre-launch of a fund raising campaign to build a new library that is estimated to cost USD 5 million. The open house held by the IES on Monday attracted over 250 guests, who were entertained by Ethiopian singers, musicians, and dancers . . .

President of Addis Ababa University, Prof. Eshetu Woncheko, emphasized the importance of the IES, which has the largest collection of Ethiopian artefacts in the world, and the need to provide a new library. The library is currently in Ras Makonnen Hall, a palace donated by Emperor Haile Selassie to the university. The hall was not designed to display or hold the weight of the growing IES collection of manuscripts, books and periodicals.

More from allAfrica.com. More details on AAU library collections can be found at the IES library homepage.

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