Search Engines and Editorial Integrity

More on the growing trend toward search engines ranking query results based on payments made by advertisors:

Many of us in the new media industry have watched in despair during the past few months as several major search engines have abandoned all pretense at editorial integrity by adopting deceptive, misleading advertising practices at the expense of their users.Finally, someone has stood up and said, Enough is enough. And now it\'s time for the rest of us to join the battle as well. (More from the Online Journalism Review.)

Thanks to the always valuable Wood s Lot.

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U.S. Will Not Free Sklyarov

The U.S. Attorney\'s office has indicated that it will not drop charges against Dmitri Sklyarov:

Representatives of the Electronic Frontier Foundation (EFF) met with representatives of the U.S. Attorney\'s office in San Francisco today. There was a productive dialog, however the U.S. Attorney\'s office gave no indication of dropping the prosecution against Dmitry Sklyarov. Having explored good faith negotiations, the Electronic Frontier Foundation rejoins the call for nonviolent protests worldwide to secure the immediate release of Dmitry Sklyarov and dropping of all criminal charges against him. A protest is already scheduled in San Francisco for 11:30am this Monday, July 30, at the Federal Courthouse at 450 Golden Gate Ave. Additional protests will occur in 25 or more cities worldwide in coming weeks.

( More from FreeSklyarov.org. Thanks to Slashdot.)

PLUS: Public Libraries Using Spanish

Bruce Jensen has put together PLUS: Public Libraries Using Spanish.


\"Many public libraries find it difficult to fully serve their multicultural communities because of the time and expertise needed to perform translation and outreach work.

PLUS seeks to lend a hand by gathering useful documents that can help you make your library a more welcoming place for Spanish speakers. Card applications, brochures, programming suggestions, signage, press releases and news articles--many in Spanish with a side-by-side English translation--are collected here and are yours to use as you wish.\"

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What\'s Doing With The Web

A gaggle of web related stories I\'ve collected and not used so far this week.

The digital divide: Ignore it at our own risk is a CNet story by who says the web is not a luxury item but is the key that opens the door to the knowledge economy, if we fail to provide access we essentially deny them an opportunity to participate in the new economy of the 21st century.

The NYTimes reports Government Sites for Children Aren\'t the Coolest, they basically stink.

Taming the Wild, Wild Web is a pathetic LA Times story that says corporations contend the Internet\'s freewheeling design kills moneymaking opportunities, so some idiots want more control so they can make more money, because they can\'t seem to figure out how to now.

Reps Warn Parents About Porn and Mom: ISP Should Pay for Kid Porn are two Wired stories on the web/porn thing.

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Grants Boost Library Technology in Massachusetts

Massachusetts libraries are getting more than $2.4 million in federal funds to upgrade their IT and improve accessibility:

The state Board of Library Commissioners is dispensing the federal money to more than 80 public, academic, school, regional and special libraries across the state. The money will fund such projects as digitizing historical resources, upgrading network systems and increasing access for people with disabilities. The money comes from the national Institute of Museum and Library Services, which is mandated under the 1996 Federal Library Services and Technology Act to promote access to learning and information resources for all types of libraries and for people of all ages.

(More from Federal Computer Week.)

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An ATM for books

I\'m not sure if it has an application in the library world, but, the \'ATM for books\' is eight feet long, 38 inches wide, it can produce a book in 12 minutes, and costs $82,000. The MTI PerfectBook-080 machine could change book stores as we know them. Instead of allowing books to go out of print, you can store them as digital files and publish them \"on demand\" in bookstores, while customers wait, using self-contained book printers.

Does something like this have a place in a library?

Digital Mass Has The Story

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DMCA Stories Galor

I seem to have collected quite a few DMCA related stories.

The Copyright Cops Go Too Far from Business 2.0 says the DMCA still has some big problems, but handcuffs aren\'t the answer. Wired Says The DMCA continues to enjoy remarkably broad support on Capitol Hill. No bill has yet been introduced in Congress to amend the DMCA for one simple reason: Official Washington loves the law precisely as much as hackers and programmers despise it. A Small Glimmer of Hope seems to be Rep. Rick Boucher, his office will draft a bill to be introduced later this year.

Linux Planet is calling it Digital Millennium Rape Act.

If you aren\'t familiar with the DMCA, read it and weep.

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Lies and the Land: Maps at the British Library

\"Lie of the Land: The Secret Life of Maps\", an exhibit investigating how maps have been used distort or justify our perceptions of the world, has just opened at the British Library:

Some maps deliberately set out to deceive. Many show a selective view and reflect only the interests of the people who made them. Stunning maps from ancient to modern reveal a secret world. In every case there is more than meets the eye. As well as over 100 maps and other exhibits from the British Library\'s superlative collections, there are interactive screens and events to help you explore the themes further . . .

Highlights from the exhibit are available online.

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Is Shakespeare Now Canadian?

Bob Cox sent along This Washington Post Story on A 1603 Painting in Toronto Purports to Show the Young William Shakespeare, if they prove to be right, the picture may be the only one of him painted while he was still alive.
The owner says the portrait was painted by an ancestor named John Sanders, who may have been an actor in a theatrical company owned by Shakespeare.

\"It looks to be quite conceivably a 1603 painting of someone. Whether it is Shakespeare, we won\'t be able to answer,\" says Christina Corsiglia, curator of European art of the Art Gallery of Ontario. \"We don\'t know what he ultimately looked like.\"

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Libraries are the next Napster?

Time has this article on the conflict between publishers and libraries over issues of copyright in the electronic age. Not an in-depth look, but an interesting overview all the same.

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Libraries in the Ancient World

The International Herald Tribune today has this review of the book \"Libraries in the Ancient World\" by Lionel Casson. It includes a look at the history of the original library of Alexandria as well as descriptions of \"curses invoked by different cultures to protect their libraries from thieves\". Now, that might be quite useful!

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The Overdue Librarian Cops Cartoon

Something to liven up your afternoon - a short and funny parody of \"Cops\" from The Cartoon Network featuring a librarian on patrol to bust folks with overdue books!

Scroll to the bottom and click on the link labeled \"Overdue.\" Flash software is required to view the cartoons.

Here\'s The Latest Link.

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Libraries on the Radio

John Guscott writes \"Just wanted to let you know that the NPR show The Connection had
a program called \"The Future of the Public Library\" on air last week.
The show is Archived.
The guests were Catherine Dibbell, Director of Public Services from
Boston Public Library, Suzie Neubauer from the Robbins Library in
Arlington MA and myself. The show focused on what libraries are doing
today in the wake of increasing competition from mega-bookstores and the
Internet. Not exactly news to librarians, but since it was a call-in show,
it\'s interesting to hear the public\'s take on this issue.\"

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More Harry Potter humor

The folks at Top Five have identified 15 mistakes in the upcoming movie other than that backwards-broomstick thing. They begin with #15, \"Harry is never once shown with owl poop on his shoulder.\"

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Bibliotheca Alexandrina to open this fall

Matt Eberle suggested
This One from The Washington Post on the Bibliotheca Alexandrina which is scheduled to open in the fall.

As with all large projects, they are dealing with years of delay, budget overruns and controversy over its warehouse-style collection policy.


\"We want to give maximum freedom to allow it to be an interlocutor\" with the world\'s great academic and research institutions, said Serageldin, The library director. \"One of the benefits is that it churns up intellectual activity in Egypt.\"

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Unlucky library thief

Matt Eberle sent in This One on a would-be thief that tried to rob a library while the local policeman was giving a presentation on crime statistics.

The Citizen newspaper said Superintendent Christo Heunis was addressing business people last Tuesday when the building\'s alarm went off.


\"It was quite ironic. I was actually presenting crime figures at the time,\" the newspaper quoted Heunis as saying.

Open letter from librarians protesting the police violence in Genoa, Italy

There is an open letter from librarians, written by Mark Rosenzweig, protesting the police violence at the anti-globalization demonstrations in Genoa, Italy, on the web and ready for your signature. I signed it, not because I am opposed to globalization per se, but I am opposed to the way it is happening and definitely opposed to the police response in Genoa, which has been incredibly brutal. The signable letter is at http://libr.org/PLG/Genoa.html, on the PLG site. It is also copied inside if you follow the internal LISNews link. You may also be interested in the Library Juice feature issue on what has happened in Genoa and it\'s coverage in the media. Apologies to those who object to anything non-library related, but as professionals we exist in the larger world.

Mistakes and Failures at the Desk

Don Warner Saklad passed along Mistakes and Failures at the Reference Desk By Lydia Olszak
This study, based on data collected through observation and structured interviews, explores the incidence of mistakes and failures by reference staff in an academic library. Three main questions are addressed: (1) what actions or behaviors constitute a mistake or failure? (2) what techniques are used by reference staff to alert each other of mistakes? and (3) do mistakes at the reference desk conform with the typology developed by Bosk in his study of medical mistakes? Results suggest that reference librarians must deal with competing goals and that providing a correct answer may not be the most important goal for every transaction.

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17th-century texts stolen from Oxford

Always helpful Charles Davis passed along This Times UK Story
on several 400-year-old theology books that have disappeared from the Bodleian Library at Oxford, just days after thieves tried to
snatch precious watches, silver and gold from the university’s
neighbouring Ashmolean Museum.

The 17th-century books, worth about £20,000, had been
available to study on request and were not in display cases.
They think ten large volumes were smuggled out of the library, concealed in clothing.

Traditional publishing\'s latest horror story

Cliff writes \"This is an interesting article especially because it suggests some interesting ideas on how this technology will or could be used. It\'s too bad publishers find this a threat rather than think of it as a business opportunity, but perhaps that\'s the bias of this article\'s writer. This kind of tech will make trees more endangered than ever, as books can join the ranks of \"throwaway\" status if this technology becomes widespread. One can imagine some publishers priting very cheap copies of books, meant to be thrown away (trashy novels, for example?)

Full Story from Digital Mass \"

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