Alabama To Place Disclaimer On Books

This Findlaw Story, sent in By James Nimmo, says Alabama is maintaining its distinction as the only state where biology textbooks include a sticker warning students that evolution is a \"controversial theory\" they should question.

The statement says in part that evolution is \"a controversial theory. ... Instructional material associated with controversy should be approached with an open mind, studied carefully, and critically considered.\"

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U of T\'s porn test

Bob Cox sent along This Story from The Toronto Star on the largest collections of modern pornography in Canada now being cataloged at the University of Toronto, \"behind a door marked Do Not Enter — Alarmed Directly To The Toronto Police Service\".

Its acquisition makes U of T the first Canadian institution to own such materials, though the academic study of smut is well advanced in many places of higher learning in the United States.

\"Some of it is from Italy and goes back to the earliest days of filmmaking — there\'s one that I\'m guessing is from 1910 or 1915 because it\'s very jerky,\" says the professor. \"Oh, I guess I shouldn\'t use that word.\"

Caffeinating Library Gate Count

Hermit;-) adds some more on the empty library problem\"The Chronicle has an article lamenting student\'s decreasing attendance at libraries and voicing the familiar debate \"about what the rise of databases and the decline of reading rooms means for academics.\"
It mentions some of the things directors are doing to draw patrons back into the brick and mortar including using \"sofas-and-lattes\". The colloquy section asks the question \"Should college libraries try to attract more students by opening coffee bars and cafes?\"
Thursday, Nov. 15, 2 p.m. U.S. Eastern time is a \"live, online discussion\": \"Are College Libraries Too Empty?\" w/ the presidents of the ACRL & CLIR\"

The Deserted Library

Martin Raish writes \"As academic libraries spend more money on electronic resources, and less on \"traditional\" materials, our students are spending less time in the reading room and more in the computer labs. \"The shift leaves many librarians and scholars wondering and worrying about the future of what has traditionally been the social and intellectual heart of campus, as well as about whether students are learning differently now -- or learning at all,\" says Scott Carlson.

Chronicle of Higher Education, 16 November \"

Look Who\'s Reading

Lee Hadden writes: \" An article in the Wall Street Journal, Nov. 9, 2001, pages W1 and W4, is
about the amazing increase in book reading and buying among the under-25
crowd. After the flop of the Internet hype, book-reading is becoming a cool
thing for the younger set. Show your \"cool\" by supporting your \"inner
bookworm.\" Also, some books are used as an accessory to clothing- as a
fashion statement. Read more about it in the article by Pooja Bhatia, \"Look
Who\'s Reading Now: Under-25 Crowd is Purchasing Books in Record Numbers;
Faulkner as a Fashion Statement\".\"

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Cyber-sleuths demand new powers

James Nimmo passed along This Story from over at Findlaw on the seizure of a suspect\'s personal computer for the purpose of dissecting the hard drive for possible clues or motives.

FBI agents did just that in the days after the September 11 plane hijack attacks on America, when they confiscated two computers from a Delray Beach, Florida public library that were allegedly used by suspects.

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SAA Responds to Presidential Paper Restrictions

An excerpt from SAA President Steve Hensen\'s letter to Congress:

I write to express the grave concern of the Society of American Archivists with respect to the President’s recent Executive Order 13233 on Presidential Papers . . .

Our apprehension over this Executive Order is on several levels. First, it violates both the spirit and letter of existing U.S. law on access to presidential papers . . . This law establishes the principle that presidential records are the property of the United States government and that the management and custody of, as well as access to, such records should be governed by the Archivist of the United States and established archival principles—all within the statutory framework of the act itself. The Executive Order puts the responsibility for these decisions with the President, and indeed with any sitting President into the future. Access to the vital historical records of this nation should not be governed by executive decree; this is why the existing law was created . . .

Second, on a broader level this Executive Order potentially threatens to undermine one of the very foundations of our nation. Free and open access to information is the cornerstone to modern democratic societies around the world . . .

More. Thanks to librarian.net.

Confessions of a serial Library Fine Payer

greenbaynewschron.com is running a Funny Little Story on returning your books late.

\"There should be an \"Overdue Friends of the Library\" club.
This club is exclusively for those of us who so love the library that we
cannot tear ourselves away from their materials in due time. We will
be revered not only for our dedication to reading, but for our
diligence in coming in and paying our overdue fines.
\"

Planning for Diversity

From the new issue of Today\'s Librarian:

In a community where 93 percent of the population is White, implementing a diversity plan hardly seems a necessity. Especially one that costs tens of thousands of dollars. But administrators at Ocean County (NJ) Public Library saw those in the minority population as an integral part of the library community. Five years ago, they made it their mission to reach out and welcome them . . .

Introducing more diversity into the library had been on Jean Vogrin\'s mind for years. As director of Ocean County\'s Barnegat Branch, Vogrin tapped into minority communities by bringing in speakers and adding ethnic programming . . .

More.

Random House Shuttering E-book Imprint

Tanya writes \"Another sign that E-books were not the next big thing they were supposed to be.
\"
Stories from The NYTimes.com and CNET on Random House Trade Group folding its e-book imprint, \"AtRandom\", due to scant consumer demand for books that can be read on screens, they company will continue to publish electronic versions of books.

Why is V.S. Naipaul so cranky?

Today\'s Chicago Tribune has a brief profile of the writer who won the Nobel Prize for Literature last month.

"A good audience is good. But what is most enervating is when I have little regard for the audience."

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Yahoo! for free speech

Ready for the World writes \"A Federal Judge ruled on WEdnesday, November 7, 2001 that the French courts cannot impose regulations or restrictions on U.S. based Yahoo. The French had argued that since the internet sites can be viewed in France that they must follow the ban on talk and sale of anything Nazi related. The U.S. Federal Court ruled that the \"United States Constitution\'s protections of free speech trumped a French order requiring Yahoo to remove Nazi materials from its Web site\". Find out more in the NYTimes \"

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Harry preps kids for Antichrist

Associated Press has another story about some conservative American Christians complaining that Harry Potter is an introduction to evil.

Besides emphasizing that this view is outside the Christian mainstream, this one also has some fun bits: A pagan says that people in his movement think the Potter books are "rather uncool," and a particularly ridiculous image on one anti-Potter website is mentioned.

A related item: A Sunday morning program at Unity Church in Chicago is supposed to examine parallels between the Harry Potter books and Bible passages.

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There is no Genealogy Fairy

Bob Cox sent along This Story from SP Times.com on the great Genealogical volunteers who make all those great resources available.

\"I volunteer because I remember all the help other people have been to me, especially when I first got started. It is a wonderful feeling to know you have helped someone to connect to their roots. It\'s like being a Sherlock Holmes every day.\"

Technology : advancement in libraries

linda writes \"Today technology is moving very fast in trying to make it easier for library users to aquire information.This therefore means librarians in libraries should make sure that they catch up with it as it runs.I\'ve attended a conference where a presentation was conducted about WIRELESS INNOPAC this is a device which looks like a cell phone and one can access a library anywhere in the world by operating the device eg. If one likes to check a book,using title ,author etc

This is possible with this device, this means you communiucate with the library even when in bed. Iam having a fear that at the end of the day as the time goes few librarians will be needed to run the library because most of the task will be done by such devices.\"

Very interesting stuff, though I can\'t find anything on \"Wireless Innopac\" on Google or innopacusers.org, wireless in libraries turned up some good results, including LibWireless:Wireless and Libraries group.

So what do you think, is wireless more of a threat to librarians than the Web?

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New Zealand appoints a minister of the Rings

jen writes \"Just how big a deal is \'\'The Lord of the Rings\'\' in New Zealand, where
native-son director Peter Jackson shot the three movies back-to-back? In
September, the government created a cabinet-level position to help the
tiny country piggyback on the films\' presumed success to lure more
tourists and filmmakers. The first \'\'Minister of Lord of the Rings\'\' -- as the
Kiwi press has dubbed him -- is Pete Hodgson, 51, who also serves as
minister of energy and of science, research, and technology.
Full EW Week Story \"

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Hard times beget courageous times

Bob Cox sent in This CSMonitor story.

It\'s a short look at some old back issues of The (London) Times, from the World War II period when London was being bombed.
Some nice perspective on current events from the past, courtesy of the coolness of a library basement.

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The History of Carnegie Libraries

Glenn A. Walsh has put together an extensive collection of links on The History of Carnegie Libraries.

Everything you ever wanted to know about the man and his libraries, past, present and future all collected in one nifty site.

New IE Bug Could Cause Hardcore Porn to Appear on Your Computer

The new Internet Explorer has a bug in it that could cause pornography to pop up on your computer screen whenever you conduct a general search for information. According to some users, the browser will just spontaneously open pages displaying pornography, gambling, and work-at-home schemes. more from Wired News.

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Does Digital Divide Rhetoric Do More Harm Than Good?

For The Chronicle, Jeffrey Young writes...

\"Warnings about a continuing \"digital divide\" could be doing more harm than good to African-Americans and other minority groups, portraying them as technophobic charity cases who lack the desire to adopt new technologies on their own. That\'s the conclusion some scholars are reaching as they study issues of race and technology.\" more

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