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A fiery Jeanette Winterson has called for the hundreds of millions of pounds of profit which Amazon, Starbucks and Google were last week accused of diverting from the UK to be used to save Britain's beleaguered public libraries.
In an impassioned speech at the British Library this evening, the award-winning author of Oranges Are Not the Only Fruit said: "Libraries cost about a billion a year to run right now. Make it two billion and charge Google, Amazon and Starbucks all that back tax on their profits here. Or if they want to go on paying fancy lawyers to legally avoid their moral duties, then perhaps those companies could do an Andrew Carnegie and build us new kinds of libraries for a new kind of future in a fairer and better world?"
Winterson was referring to the meeting at parliament's public accounts committee last Monday which saw executives from the three companies vigorously quizzed by MPs over their tax affairs, and accused of diverting UK profits to tax havens. Her lecture was to mark the 10th anniversary of the independent charity The Reading Agency, and was attended by fellow authors including David Nicholls, Julian Barnes, Joanna Trollope and Sarah Waters.
I've heard people opine for a Spotify for ebooks. This isn’t as kooky as when they opine for Netflix or Blockbuster for physical books. The thing is… Spotify is pretty good for consumers, but sucks for creators. Well… it’s not all rosy as some people want to believe. (I really don’t get why so many librarians absolutely loathe the publishing industry, but give the music industry a pass.)
For now, the estimable output of W. W. Norton, including Krugman's End This Depression Now, will continue to be available at a variety of prices. But over the longer term, with possibly serious consequences for the viability of publishers and booksellers, the odds favor the public's instinct to get the best bargain. To reiterate a crucial point I have made before: Publishers will always need the revenue to support authors and the staffs that edit, produce, and market their books, and to provide a reasonable profit for their owners. If the squeeze becomes too tight, the result will be fewer books that matter -- like End This Depression Now -- whether in print or digital formats.
Although it was a public relations concern at the time, the $80 library-card fee imposed on users not residing in the Santa Clara County Library District in July 2011 has since proven mostly beneficial to Los Altos and Los Altos Hills users.
Nearly 14 months after the fee went into effect, statistics show increased patronage of the Los Altos main and Woodland Branch libraries by local residents and more materials available to them with decreased competition from nondistrict users.
The Public Library of Youngstown and Mahoning County has hired a Cleveland consulting firm to study the pay and benefits of library employees compared with those of their peers doing similar work elsewhere.
That firm, The Human Resource Department, will be paid between $12,000 and $13,500 for the compensation study, depending on its scope.
The services and personnel committee of the library’s board of trustees will meet at 3:30 p.m. Thursday at the Poland library to discuss the library system’s compensation philosophy and the compensation study.
Story from The Youngstown Vindicator (interesting newspaper name!)
Warren County NJ's rolling hills look more intimidating than scenic from mile 45 of a long training ride. Librarian TaraLynn Romagnoli has been climbing many of these hills via bicycle on her quest to train for a 60-mile fundraising ride to raise money for the Warren County Library according to NJ.com.
"The terrain is a little tough, especially since I'm not an experienced cyclist, but I'm enjoying the challenge and can see myself improving every day,” Romagnoli said. “I am expecting to have a great ride."
Romagnoli is cycling across the county to each branch of the Warren County Library to raise money for the new main library facility at 189 Route 519 in White Township.
This 60-mile ride, called the Ride to Read, is presented by the Friends of the Warren County Library Headquarters. The Friends hope to raise $5,000 in sponsorships to purchase furnishings, such as comfy armchairs for quiet reading, as well as diner booths and stools, an mp3-player jukebox, and a neon sign for a diner-themed teen section. Romagnoli hopes that these items will help to make this building a true community center for library users.
As the decades pass, new generations of people who grew up reading and loving comics reach a point where they want to revisit something they enjoyed when they were young, and finally possess the means to acquire it, said Michael Zapcic. A sort of living comic book encyclopedia who appears on AMC show Comic Book Men, Zapcic helps run Kevin Smith’s store Jay and Silent Bob’s Secret Stash, where he evaluates prized possessions that customers are trying to unload.
EveryLibrary is launching today as the first and only national political action committee (PAC) for libraries. Focused exclusively on local library ballot initiatives and measures, EveryLibrary is dedicated to helping libraries win at election time. The organization, found online at www.everylibrary.org, will fundraise nationally to support local library ballot committees and PACs, and provide them with technical support and consultancy on how to run – and win – at the ballot box.
“EveryLibrary is built on the idea that any library ballot initiative anywhere matters to every library everywhere,” says John Chrastka, executive director of EveryLibrary. “EveryLibrary will allow us to raise funds and support specific ballot measures that keep libraries open and thriving. Elections are the “last mile” of library advocacy and this new PAC is an amazing opportunity for our community to talk directly to voters.”
EveryLibrary is conducting a $50,000 fundraising round from September 5 to November 7, 2012 to underwrite the fees associated with its legal filings and to create campaign toolkits, voter education materials, and messaging targeted to 2013 election initiatives. Visit http://rally.org/everylibrary to learn more and to donate today. Individuals, corporations, unions, and certain foundations are eligible to donate. EveryLibrary will use donations to support local committees and PACs while providing technical assistance to campaigns.
Interesting comment over on Reddit on who is making how much on different versions of books. "Bottom line, when in hardcover the author makes slightly better money if you buy the print book ($2.60 verses $2.27). When in mass-market paperback the author makes MUCH more if you buy an ebook."
This week's regular episode presents an essay. A news miscellany will be posted as a separate episode Wednesday.
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LISTen: An LISNews.org Program -- Episode #208 by The Air Staff of Erie Looking Productions is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 3.0 Unported License.
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