US bookshop offering refunds for Go Set a Watchman

Brilliant Books in Michigan says customers are owed apologies for portrayal of Harper Lee’s long-lost manuscript as a ‘nice summer novel’ rather than an academic curiosity

From US bookshop offering refunds for Go Set a Watchman | Books | The Guardian


Unique historic photographic collection online from Mount Holyoke College

ount Holyoke College has just digitized some 2,000 rare and beautiful photographs that document life at the College from 1899 to 1939. The entire collection is now available for research and enjoyment online.

The images were originally captured on glass-plate negatives by Mount Holyoke botany professor and photographer Asa Kinney.

For more information about the collection:

Fallout from child protection law felt in Pa. churches, libraries, fields

The fallout from Pennsylvania's rules requiring Department of Human Services child abuse background clearances and state police criminal records checks for employees and volunteers who have “routine contact with children” is being felt in churches, libraries, playgrounds, swimming pools and on Little League and soccer fields across the commonwealth.

From Fallout from child protection law felt in Pa. churches, libraries, fields | TribLIVE


Libraries need a deeper online presence

Librarians understand the context in which books make sense, how they go together, what are the canonical readings, and what are the dissenting works worth reading. Library information systems may not know as much about users’ behavior as Amazon does, but even highly anonymized usage records can say a lot about what a community values: which works people are reading, which ones they like or think are important, and even the relations they see among the works. In essence, the library can hold a mirror up to the community, allowing it to get a clearer and stronger sense of itself.

From Libraries need a deeper online presence - Opinion - The Boston Globe

After 20 years, Stanford Encyclopedia of Philosophy thrives on the web

Launched two decades ago, years before Wikipedia existed, the site led the way in academic information sharing. It now includes 1,478 authoritative and vetted entries about all manner of philosophical topics. It is updated almost daily, thanks to about 2,000 contributors.

The encyclopedia averages more than a million Internet hits per week. Users include students, scholars, librarians and even military officials.

From After 20 years, Stanford Encyclopedia of Philosophy thrives on the web

Samuel Delany and the Past and Future of Science Fiction

But Delany believes that, as women and people of color start to have “economic heft,” there is a fear that what is “normal” will cease to enjoy the same position of power. “There are a lot of black women writers, and some of them are gay, and they are writing about their own historical moment, and the result is that white male writers find themselves wondering if this is a reverse kind of racism. But when it gets to fifty per cent,” he said, then “we can talk about that.” It has nothing to do with science fiction, he reiterated. “It has to do with the rest of society where science fiction exists.”

From Samuel Delany and the Past and Future of Science Fiction - The New Yorker


The Future Of American History

So why is the number of history majors diminishing? "Experts blame anxieties about the job market for steering students into fields they think will translate to jobs quickly after graduation," the Columbus Dispatch story observes. "Often that's the STEM disciplines that politicians have championed — science, technology, engineering and mathematics."

From The Future Of American History : NPR History Dept. : NPR


Cooking for Copyright campaign sees librarians make vintage recipes in bid to change laws

Librarians down under are cooking up a campaign to change the country's copyright laws according to this ABC story.

"However, those involved want people to bake biscuits and cakes rather than picket Parliament.

Social media users are being encouraged to cook a vintage recipe and share a photo of the result.

The aim is to encourage the Attorney-General to look at changing the law so that unpublished works are treated the same way as published ones."

Mailman's plea for books gets worldwide response

Mailman's plea for books gets worldwide response
Utah boy was sifting through junk mail for something to read

A postal carrier has delivered more than the mail to a Sandy, Utah boy. KSL in Salt Lake City reports that his request for books for the child to read has unexpectedly spread around the world.

Ron Lynch was delivering the mail when he spotted 12-year-old Mathew Flores fishing advertisements and newsletters out of a junk mail bin. The boy told the mail carrier that he was looking for something to read.

Reading, he says, is interesting. "Plus, it gets you smarter," Flores said.

"A young man was standing here reading junk mail and asked me if I had any extra," Lynch told KSL.

Lynch started a conversation with the boy. Flores told the mail carrier that he reads the advertisements because he doesn't have books of his own and that bus fares made it difficult to get to the library.

If Flores couldn't get to the library, Lynch decided to bring the library to him.


Cheap Eats: A Cookbook For Eating Well On A Food Stamp Budget

When Leanne Brown moved to New York from Canada to earn a master's in food studies at New York University, she couldn't help noticing that Americans on a tight budget were eating a lot of processed foods heavy in carbs.

"It really bothered me," she says. "The 47 million people on food stamps — and that's a big chunk of the population — don't have the same choices everyone else does."

Brown guessed that she could help people in SNAP, the federal government's Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program, find ways to cook filling, nourishing and flavorful meals. So she set out to write a cookbook full of recipes anyone could make on a budget of just $4 a day.

The result is Good and Cheap, which is free online and has been downloaded over 700,000 times since Brown posted it on her website in June 2014. A July 2014 Kickstarter campaign also helped her raise $145,000 to print copies for people without computer access. And on July 21, the second edition was published with 30 new recipes.

Full story:


What The College Kids Are Reading

Lots of colleges have these reading programs; some are just for freshmen, and for others, the entire campus or local community joins in. The idea is that books will stir discussion — and unite a class or campus around a topic. Some schools even have the author speak on campus, or weave the book's content into the year's curriculum.


Strong case could be made that Amazon actually saved publishing

Another wake-up call from Amazon as they serve author interests better than publishers have


Although those fighting Amazon can and will point to what they consider to be situations where Amazon takes unfair advantage of its marketplace position, there are two aspects of what has transpired over the past 20 years that the critics who plead for government intervention will almost certainly ignore.

Most of Amazon’s success is due to their own stellar performance: innovating, investing, executing, and having a vision of what could happen as they grew.

Most of what Amazon has done to build their business — almost all of what they’ve done until the past few years of Kindle dominance — benefited most publishers and helped them grow their sales and their profitability. (In fact, book publishing uniquely among media businesses didn’t fall off a cliff in the decade surrounding the millenium and a strong case could be made that Amazon actually saved them.)sims-gamephotobanda


Reproducing Borges’s Imaginary Library Online

Though the story’s librarian-narrator believes in the possible triumph of reason, the principle force underlying the library is irrationality. Any expression, even the most elegant or undeniably true, is nonetheless possible without sincerity, or even any intention towards signification.

From Reproducing Borges’s Imaginary Library Online


Sign Your Library Up for National Voter Registration Day
This free and easy program has everything you need!
Imagine if all your library’s users were registered voters? Well, on September 22nd, 2015, librarians have a great opportunity to offer a “program” to register voters on site complete with volunteers and marketing. A large number of libraries around the country will be participating in the event and we want you to participate too. All you have to do is go to the national website and click on the link to become a partner to allow volunteers to come to the library and sign people up. The NVRD will send you marketing materials, teach your staff how to register voters (if you go that route), and the volunteers will take care of all of the paperwork. This is a non-partisan effort supported by organizations like; Asian Pacific American Labor Alliance Education Fund, Bus Federation Civic Fund, Fair Elections Legal Network, League of Women Voters, Nonprofit VOTE, Rock the Vote, and Voto Latino.

Signing Up is Easy
You still have time to register as a partnered organization and it’s very easy to do through their website. If you sign up before September 4th, they will provide training and marketing materials for free! You can then use these materials to start planning a voter registration event on National Voter Registration Day on September 22th.

What Will You Have to Do?
We are asking you to sign up as a partnering organization through the website. This is easy to do and requires very little from the library. There are a couple of ways that we are asking you to partner with them and get involved.

You can organize a Voter Registration effort on September 22.
You can allow their volunteers to set up a booth in front of your library to get people registered to vote.
You can simply promote voter registration and/or volunteerism through marketing and communication efforts.
Why Is This So Important?
Plan and simply, the more registered library users in your community, the better your chances of winning an election come election time. Imagine if every library user in your community was a registered voter that your ballot committee could engage with and ask to vote for the library? It is also so important that library staff, from pages to directors get familiar and comfortable with the political process. A well-trained and comfortable staff is a huge asset during your library’s election. You are still the front line on library advocacy and as such, those staff members are all, in a way, candidates.

Is This Legal?
Yes. And it’s basic library work. While it is true that staff can never tell the public that they should vote yes or no on any piece of legislation, especially library ballot measures, they can help members of the public to get registered to vote and give them information about elections.


The Public Library Lives and Is Loved

Via Alternet:

Indisputable fact--Americans love their public libraries. Evidence to support this statement abounds. A 2013 report by the Pew Research Center’s Internet and American Life Project noted that in the previous decade “every other major institution (government, churches, banks, corporations) has fallen in public esteem except libraries, the military, and first responders.”

Librarian Did It Because "Everyone Was Doing It"

College Librarian in China Admits He Replaced Art With Fakes from ABC News.

A former chief librarian at a Chinese university admitted in court Tuesday to stealing more than 140 paintings by grandmasters in a gallery under his watch and replacing them with fakes he painted himself.

For two years up until 2006, Xiao Yuan substituted famous works including landscapes and calligraphies in a gallery within the library of the Guangzhou Academy of Fine Arts.

He told the court in his defense that the practice appeared to be rampant and the handling of such paintings was not secure. He said he noticed fakes already hanging in the gallery on his first day on the job. Later, after he replaced some of the remaining masters with his own fakes, he was surprised when he noticed his fake paintings were being substituted with even more fakes.

Defunct Magazines: How “Desert” Captured the Southwest

Nicole’s staff pick from earlier today reminded me: I’ve been meaning to draw attention to the riches of’s Magazine Rack, a clearinghouse for defunct, forgotten, and abstruse periodicals from decades past. Anyone interested in media and design will find something diverting here. They’ve amassed a stupefyingly diverse collection, including such celebrated titles as OMNI (once the best sci-fi magazine around) and more … specialized fare, like The National Locksmith, Railway Modeller, and, of course, Sponsor, the magazine for radio and TV advertising buyers. All of these have been carefully digitized, and they’re free.

From Defunct Magazines: How “Desert” Captured the Southwest

How libraries can compete with Google and Amazon - Quartz

“Being able to provide the resources and technology that people can’t afford on their own is something that the library—that’s what the library should do,” says Watson from the Queens Library. “The library is the equalizer.”

From How libraries can compete with Google and Amazon - Quartz


Notre Dame's Hesburgh Libraries receives $10M gift

The main Hesburgh Library is in the midst of a major renovation. The gift will be used in part to fund renovation of the future home for the Navari Family Center for Digital Scholarship in that building, as well as to establish an endowment to support digital library services and research projects related to the center, the university announced Friday.

From Notre Dame's Hesburgh Libraries receives $10M gift - South Bend Tribune: Local

LGBT Titles Will Stay on Library Shelves

From KERA News:

Hood County (TX) Commissioners said today that two LGBT-themed library books for kids will stay on the shelves.

Dozens of residents concerned about the books spoke before the commissioners earlier today in Granbury. Some want to remove the books from the shelves of the public library. Others want LGBT books for kids moved to another part of the library.

Last month, the county's library advisory board voted to keep the books with one minor change. County attorney Lori Kaspar said the library director moved one of the books, “This Day in June,” from the kids section to the parenting shelves. The other book, "My Princess Boy," remains in the children's section.


Subscribe to LISNews: RSS