Colleges provide chilly climate for free speech since attacks

FreedomForum has This One on all the college faculty and staff getting in trouble for expressing opinions on the terrorist attacks.

They call it an erosion of free academic expression that existed before Sept. 11.

\"These are real conflicts,\" he said, between \"what universities feel is civilized behavior and free speech that they feel we must protect. I think we still haven\'t sorted it out yet.\"


UCLA Librarian Appeals Suspension has more News on A UCLA librarian, who was suspended without pay last month for sending a mass e-mail criticizing U.S. foreign policy. Jonnie Hargis has filed a grievance with the university administration. He says this is like \"the thought police—this is something out of Orwell\". They say his email \"demonstrated a lack of sensitivity that went beyond incivility and became harassment.\"

In the meantime, Hargis has gained fame through his appearances on several radio talk shows and two articles in the student newspaper.


Terrorism spurs book sales

The Advocate has This Story sent in by Cavan McCarthy on bookstores all over the United States reporting that works on terrorism, religion and the Middle East are flying off the shelves.

They also say when it first happened, Bible sales increased 10 or 15 percent.


Donation debate continues

Bob Cox sent along This One on the big hub-bub over the naming of the new Clarence Thomas wing of the historically black Carnegie Library after Savannah native. The library system accepted a $150,000, from a then secret person, donation in exchange for that name.
A Library Board member took offense to the notion of putting the conservative judge\'s name on a library that was built by resourceful blacks during segregation.


Novels become \'pulped fiction\'

Sarah Hepworth writes \"Hundreds of novels published end up in recycling bins, where they are destined to be shredded, according to The Times newspaper.

Full BBC Story \"

They say it\'s the publishers fault, publishing too many books that no one wants to read.
\"That\'s a terrific amount of wastage. It\'s a crying shame,\" Brian Oldfield from Paper Hub told The Times.


NetLibrary On The Ropes

Lee Hadden writes: \"netLibrary (NetLibrary) of Boulder, Colorado, is going broke
and is looking for a buyer. With the recent market problems since late last
year, and especially since September 11th, their cash flow has been
insufficient to keep the company afloat. netLibrary provides digital
textbooks and other reading matter as a service for public, corporate and
academic libraries.
For now, netLibrary has asked that current employees return to work at
drastically reduced pay. Everybody will be paid the same- about $360.00 a
week, which is about what they would get on unemployment benefits. Since
everyone is getting the same pay, everyone is working at executive levels
claim one employee.
Sigh. Will they have a virtual remainder sale for unsold e-books?
Read more about it.
This may be your last chance to see my e-book Reliving The Civil War\"


Seattle Telephone Reference

Ron Force writes \"Eric Lactis has a column on the questions asked of the Seattle Public Library\'s trelephone reference:
\"Librarians hold answers to life\'s little questions
Three-hundred-fifty to 400 times a day, your fellow Seattleites dial 206-386-4636 and prove the value of books.

Three-hundred-fifty to 400 times a day, one of your fellow Seattleites starts thinking about something, and soon figures out that ... he\'s clueless. He needs information, and he needs it now... \"

Full Story

Librarians are Valued

Hats off to Erik Lacitis who wrote this fine piece on the value of librarians in Seattle. Nice job.
\"That Seattleite suddenly wondered, \"How many Muslims live in the United States?\" And, of course, he had no clue.

That is when he ended up talking to someone such as Joanne Clemmons, a librarian at the downtown Seattle Public Library, who was sitting in a room containing a Lazy Susan with four tiers holding some 500 reference books at her fingertips, plus computers accessing the Internet.

Clemmons pulled out the 2001 World Almanac and there was the answer ? 5,780,000 Muslims.\"


The Land of Ryan

Illinois Governor George Ryan, that is. He\'s involved in a ballooning controversy regarding an appointment at the Abraham Lincoln Presidential Library & Museum:

Earlier this month, a remarkable story broke in the newspapers about the $115 million Abraham Lincoln library and museum complex now being built in Springfield. The stories suggested that Gov. George Ryan was leaving open the possibility of awarding the directorship of the complex as a political spoil to his own chief of staff, Robert Newtson . . .

That\'s not just rhetoric. Typical Illinois politicking already had discouraged one of the nation\'s most gifted presidential scholars from considering the job of overseeing the greatest Lincoln collection anywhere.

Ah, the Illinois culture of sleaze. We had managed to drive off a superb candidate so we could consider handing the job to a loyal Ryan factotum . . .

More from the Chicago Tribune. While we\'re on the subject of shameless self-promotion, I\'d like to plug my new \'blog ;).

Librarians Against War

\"Librarians Against War,\" at,
is a small new website collecting statements by librarians
opposed to war.
It is the new home of the Emergency Declaration written by
Mark Rosenzweig
and signed by 280 people, as well as similar letters
written over the past
few years, and the Peace Telegram, sent to President
Roosevelt by the
Progressive Librarians Council in 1940.

netLibrary for Sale

netLibrary, who once claimed to offer \"the only comprehensive approach to eBooks that integrates with the time-honored missions and methods of libraries and librarians\", is up for sale:

Boulder technology firm netLibrary . . . [failed] to raise needed funds in an extremely tough investment environment.

The 230 employees, who were paid through Friday, were told Friday that they are welcome to return on Monday to help the company through its transition, but at in many cases a drastically cut pay rate. Each employee from receptionist to president will be paid $360 a week, roughly the equivalent of unemployment benefits . . .

NetLibrary was founded in 1998. The company had employed about 400 at its peak and had in raised $109.8 million in venture backing from Houghton Mifflin, McGraw-Hill, Liberty Digital and others.

More from the The Daily Camera, with thanks to Gary Price.

Weeding Made Easy as 1, 2, 3M

3M, using a component developed by Texas instruments, has created a new technology that will enable busy librarians
to weed their collections on the fly. Once programmed with items to be weeded, the new device will alert librarians directly from the stacks, when a scanner is moved over the book. Books that practically weed themselves. What a concept. more...


Digital Reference Interview Bibliography Available

The indefatigable Bernie Sloan has begun compiling a bibliography on the digital reference interview.


Bird\'s-Eye Views, Made to Order

Those who like GIS and mapping technology will want to read this
story from the New York Times. There is information about
satellite imaging and photography. Lots of links!
After the terrorist attacks \"...Space Imaging had taken the unusual
step of making images of the disaster sites available free on its Web
site, and some competitors had done likewise. \"We had so many
emergency groups calling that we decided to just put it out there so
they could use it as quickly as possible,\" said John Copple, chief
executive at Space Imaging, based in the Denver suburb of Thornton,

Full Story


A New Atmosphere At Flagship Library

From the Washington Post, all about the newly remodeled
library in Howard County, Maryland.
\"You\'ll smell it in the aroma wafting from the coffee bar. You\'ll feel it
as you settle onto sleek sofas, browse the DVD and CD collections, hook
your laptop into the wired desks. This is not your grandmother\'s

Full Story

First Amendment Advocates Lament halting of Internet access to criminal filings

This story from AP reports on the recent court decision about online
access to some government docs. Federal criminal filings are no longer
available online.
\"Though court records remain publicly available on paper at
courthouses, they were deemed too public when it came to the Internet.



USC Library Reopens After \"Seismic Retrofitting\"

The University of Southern California\'s Edward L. Doheny Memorial Library has been outfitted to withstand earthquakes:

The 650,000-volume library, a focus of research in the humanities and social sciences, has been a striking example of Italian Romanesque architecture on the campus since it opened in 1932 . . .

The library was damaged like so many other Los Angeles buildings in the 1994 Northridge earthquake. USC used funds granted by the Federal Emergency Management Agency to cover most of the costs of building 17 shear walls to strengthen the structure against lateral movement from earthquakes.

More from the Los Angeles Times.

Librarians face new competitor

As if it weren\'t bad enough that folks think the Web has all the answers, now it looks like we\'ve got a talking coconut to compete with.

BTW, Weekly World News is one of the tabloids published by American Media, site of the anthrax incidents.


Perth Library to Become Pub

The Evening Telegraph reports that the historic Sandeman Library is slated to become a Theme Pub. Councillors apparently decided not to contest this, having lost a former bid to stop the old education department building from becoming a nightclub.


Library shelves it\'s books

Sarah Hepworth writes \"A Cornish library is restocking its shelves after borrowers complained that they had read all the books.
Full Story at the Beeb \"

They have now swapped with other libraries or put into a book sale more than 90% of hardback fiction, crime, westerns and large print books, along with paperbacks!


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