Trustees Fire Librarian for Wanting to Improve Services - Entire Staff Quits

When trustees of the Magness, (TN) library fired the librarian for wanting to relocate the library and provide patrons with improved service, the rest of the library\'s employees walked off the job. According to the article, the board member who served Librarian Susan Curtis with a piece of paper stating that \"her services were no longer needed, said, \"The board wants to strive to make the Magness Library more of what the original benefactors described it to be. We can be the cornerstone of Main Street revitalization. The library shouldn\'t just be a dusty, old book depository. Donations like the $100,000 given by Carrier Corporation could open the doors to making the library a place where piano recitals could be conducted and small community plays could be held.\" more... from The Southern Standard. ---- Also be sure and read what the community says about it at the end of the article.

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Erotic Library Encounter Made Patron Care About Art, Literature and History

Kathy Wilson has written an article over at Salon, in which she describes her library experience...Ah, the public library circa 1982. The workhorse institution of the community, a perpetually underfunded repository of stuffy reference books, underpaid librarians, used book sales, tax forms, broken microfiche readers -- and pornography.\" more...

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Freeport Library Future Still Uncertain, but They May be Gaining Ground

Although the idea of using landfill money to help fund the building of the new Freeport (IL) library has been well received by council members, there is still enough opposition to cause people to be gaurdedly optimistic. The $2.5 million funding commitment is far from the amount they need to secure. Some want the issue to go on a referendum to be voted upon by citizens. One of the issues is whether to build a one-story facility at the cost of $7 million or add a shell for a second story for $8 million. more...

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Free Public Library - Every Reader Owns a Share

For the Christian Science Monitor, Marilyn Gardner writes..

\"To a dedicated book lover, a library is a wondrous place. Walk through the door, and the pleasant, nose-tingling smell of paper and glue offers a silent welcome, a promise of the literary gold inside, waiting to be mined. So many books and magazines! So many words filling printed pages and dancing across computer screens! So many ideas, waiting to inspire thought and provoke discussion! No wonder those three little words, free public library, remain among the sweetest in the language - not only in English, but in any language.\" more...

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Patron Leaves Kid Porn on Library\'s Computer

Last year a patron left child pornography on the hard drive of a computer at the public library in Ashabula, OH. It was discovered by a the system administrator. An inexpensive software program, developed by a former government hacker, led to the arrest of the man responsible. \" \'A lot of these child pornographers on the Web tend to have good jobs and can afford good attorneys,\' said Detective Van Robison of the Ashtabula County Sheriff\'s Department. \" \'The company helped us make a clear case as to what he was doing.\"
Another type of software led authorities in Texas to a child porn operation in which a list of 30,000 buyers was discovered. According to the article, it was the biggest bust of its kind in the US. more... from The Daily Camera.

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Cartoon converts librarian to hero

jen writes \"They could have done without the \"mild-mannered librarian\" label IMHO.

Monika Antonelli leads a secret life.

By day, she\'s a mild-mannered librarian at the University of
North Texas. In her spare time, she\'s the voice of cartoon
superhero Chiaotzu and a shape-shifting cat called Puar on the popular TV series Dragon Ball Z. \"

Full Story.
I wonder how many other librarians moonlight at such a cool job?

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Skylarov indicted Tuesday

Dmitri Skylarov was indicted Tuesday despite his attorney\'s attempts to reach a plea bargain. The AP news story is available at the Washington Post. The Electronic Freedom Foundation\'s reaction is here. ElcomSoft\'s Software has legitimate \'fair-use\' applications. Music CD\'s are being copy protected. These are negative indicators for the future of fair use, a principle that keeps libraries in business. Could a fight for digital rights be the next civil rights movement?

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SC Attorney General says library filter law is clear

JillW pass along This Story on the new state(SC) law that requires most libraries in the state to install filters on their computers. He says it\'s clear and must be enforced.
Most libraries in the state must install the filters to prevent people from accessing pornographic sites, or risk losing half their state funds


\"Ignoring the Internet filter law is not an option for public libraries,\" Condon said.\"

I\'m not keeping track, but I\'m seeing more than a few state filtering laws pass through the LISNews pages now.

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Librarians Gatekeepers of the \'Net?

Salon is hosting a Table Talk discussion thread called \"Should Librarians be the gatekeepers of the net?\"
Table Talk is as rambling, informative, inflammatory, and casual as any good dinner party conversation. It appears that some of us library types are already seated at this table and have some good things to say.

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Canada\'s Parliamentary Library Defies Trade Tribunal

The library is defying an order by Canada\'s International Trade Tribunal to abandon a contract which gives Microsoft a near-monopoly over the Parliament\'s computer services:

The tribunal, which functions as a procurement watchdog for government suppliers, ruled the library broke the government\'s own procurement rules and a trade agreement in a tender for an electronic news monitoring service for the 750 MPs, Senators and their staff served by the library. It concluded the library was discriminatory in favouring software giant Microsoft Corp.\'s products and ordered the library to amend the tender or issue a new one.

But in a rare move, the library is refusing to implement the order because it claims to have exhausted its budget for the new monitoring service in legal costs to defend itself before the tribunal. . .

More from the National Post.

.info War Heats Up

With three weeks to go before .info is officially launched, folks are beginning to slug it out over real estate in the new domain:

Starting Wednesday, the World Intellectual Property Organization (WIPO) will begin deciding disputes between rival registrants vying for ownership of sites in the dot-info domain.

\"We\'re going to see how well it actually works,\" said Roland LaPlante, Afilias\' chief marketing officer, who estimates that domain name registrants will file between several hundred and several thousand challenges between now and Dec. 26, the deadline for filing. . .

More from Wired News and even more from the Independent.

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Tribal libraries band together

Simmy writes \"There is a vrey short story at ashlandwi.com on a conference of Tribal librarians and others in Oanaha, WI. The first-of-its-kind conference brought together the Tribal Library Consortium of Bad River, Red Cliff, Lac du Flambeau and La Courte O\'reilles. Meeting at the Waverly Beach Roundhouse on the Bad River Reservation, the group discussed multicultural storytelling, the Ojibwa Language program and documenting traditional customs. \"

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Internet porn and kids

Me writes \"Jerry Large has written a piece in the Seattle Times on filtering in public libraries. He does a great job looking at both sides, and finishes with \"Any plan will require compromises and will leave loose ends. Social evolution won\'t catch up with technological evolution any time soon, but the one sure thing is that standing still won\'t get us where we want to be.\"


He also said \"Two good intentions are butting heads. Should we shield children from pornography? Of course we should. Do we believe in freedom and personal responsibility? Sure we do. \"

That looks like one of those titles that will come back to haunt me in the search engines.

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E-books off to a slow start

This article in the New York Times today discusses why E-books have consistently failed to meet business expectations. Most of it is stuff we\'ve heard before, but some of it is interesting. For instance, the biggest consumers of e-books are fans of mysteries and romance novels. They buy e-books because they are cheap and disposable. Are e-books the new pulp fiction? Other insights are that mainstream titles are still overpriced, the readers are clunky, and different formats are incompatible.

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Chicagoans are Reading the Same Book at the Same Time

For The New York Times, Steven Kinzer writes...

\"In a radical effort to pull an entire city away from video screens and into the pages of literature, Chicago officials are asking every adult and adolescent in the city to read the same book at the same time. The book they have chosen is Harper Lee\'s \"To Kill a Mockingbird.\" Libraries throughout the city have braced for an onslaught by putting more than 4,000 copies of the book on their shelves, including Spanish and Polish translations. Bookstores reported sharp increases in sales even before the seven-week project was officially begun on Saturday.\" more... Don\'t forget your required free subscription Here.

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The Purpose of Copyright

Jim writes \"I found this one on here you don\'t seem to have it yet. The author, Lydia Pallas Loren, says relatively few people, including lawyers, have sufficient knowledge or understanding of what copyright is and tries to explain it. \"
She goes on to say \"These misconceptions are causing a dangerous shift in copyright protection, a shift that threatens the advancement of knowledge and learning in this country.\", she does a great job explaining copyright law and The Digital Millennium Copyright Act.


L. M. Wadin passed along This Sad Story from over at Salon. If you need yet another reason to hate the DMCA read it.

African Public Libraries: A Literature Survey

I missed this when it appeared in March - here\'s hoping it hasn\'t been posted before:

The African public library systems have failed to respond to the needs of their constituency. The problems faced by these systems are multi-faceted but can be divided into five broad categories: the introduction of an anachronistic and inappropriate colonial model, inadequate training of library staff, deficiencies in determining specific needs through analysis, lack of cooperation among agencies involved in library-related work, and the absence of sustained efforts to achieve an alternative framework. In this literature survey, these problems will be discussed and recommendations made for addressing some of the issues. A table will also be provided detailing the ideal African public library system.

More from LIBRES.

Public Libraries on Public Radio

\"Public Interest,\" a great Washington, D.C. local affairs radio show, profiled a number of area public libraries today:

It\'s a place where parents bring their children for storytime. Where senior citizens learn to surf the Web. And where families can rent their favorite DVDs. It\'s your local library. Join guest host Frank Stasio as he talks to directors from libraries around the Washington area about their role in the community.

You can find more information and listen in RealAudio here. It will be reaired tonight at 8PM for any Washingtonians out there.

Gov Doesn\'t Own FirstGov - Millionaire Does & He Wants It Back

It\'s no surprise to learn that the US government has goofed again. It seems that to the surprise of some, illustrious Uncle doesn\'t own FirstGov. It was a \"gift to the nation\" from millionaire philanthropist and President of Inktomi, Eric Brewer. The \"gift\" seems to have come with strings attached, from which our ever-so-eminent legislators, under the Clinton Administration, neglected to protect themselves. In 2003, the owner gets the database back, and the cost for the government to implement a new system will cost millions. Not to worry, taxpayers will be happy to foot the bill. According to OMB Deputy Director, Sally Katzen, \"I was a bit of a nervous Nellie” about Brewer’s free offer.\" Nervous obviously because what seemed too good to be true turned out to be just that. more... from GCN.

Sacramento Library Lets Users Decide on Filtered or Unfiltered Viewing

Board members of the Sacramento Public Library don\'t know yet whether they should filter or not. The issue \"requires more study.\" Rather than force librarians to police internet use, patrons, including children would decide. All computers would be filtered, allowing for that option. According to the article, \"Children would have to use the filters if their parents were present to monitor their use or if they followed parental instructions to that effect.\" more... from Sacbee.

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