Libraries

The Reinvention of America's Libraries - The Atlantic

We’re still going! I have written detailed posts about many of them for TheAtlantic.com.  I’m still writing!

Here are links to the previous posts, which represent a large cross-section of towns around the country, from Maine to Mississippi to Oregon.  To me, each library showed a particular strength and focus, each one reflecting the wants or needs of the different towns.  Here they are, with links from each city’s name to the original post:

From The Reinvention of America's Libraries - The Atlantic

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libraries function as vibrant centers of America’s towns: technology, education, and community

The traditional impression of libraries as places for quiet reading, research, and borrowing books—and of librarians as schoolmarmish shush-ers—is outdated, as they have metamorphosed into bustling civic centers. For instance, Deschutes Public Library in Bend, Oregon, now cooperates with dozens of organizations, from AARP (which helps people with their taxes) to Goodwill (which teaches résumé writing). A social worker trains staff to guide conversations about one of the most frequent questions people trustingly bring into the library: Can you help me figure out how to meet my housing costs?

There are three areas where libraries function as vibrant centers of America’s towns: technology, education, and community.

From Deb Fallows on The Local Library - The Atlantic

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Never trust a corporation to do a library’s job

Google Books is still online, but curtailed their scanning efforts in recent years, likely discouraged by a decade of legal wrangling still in appeal. The official blog stopped updating in 2012 and the Twitter account’s been dormant since February 2013.
Even Google Search, their flagship product, stopped focusing on the history of the web. In 2011, Google removed the Timeline view letting users filter search results by date, while a series of major changes to their search ranking algorithm increasingly favored freshness over older pages from established sources. (To the detriment of some.)

From Never trust a corporation to do a library’s job — The Message — Medium

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Beyond Books: Why Some Libraries Now Lend Tools, Toys and More

Beyond boosting digital literacy and fostering intellectual curiosity, lending these items also ties into the broader trend of collaborative consumption or the sharing economy. “Seldom-used tools like the stud finders or soil testers are great because you use them once or twice a year, so there’s no point in purchasing them yourself,” Lent says. He adds that a colleague in Brookline, Massachusetts, a suburb of Boston where many residents live in small spaces, finds kitchen equipment to be in high demand. “[In Brookline], people have mostly apartments, and so they don’t want to have all this kitchen gear [when they’re not using it],” Lent explains. 

From Beyond Books: Why Some Libraries Now Lend Tools, Toys and More - US News

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A dark age ahead for lending libraries in India?

Owners of lending libraries find running them increasingly tough, primarily due to rising rental costs that take a huge chunk out of their overall expenditure. Another problem is that they are finding it difficult to hire librarians. Many also feel that the reading habit is waning among people.

From A dark age ahead for lending libraries? - The Hindu

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Karin Slaughter: Libraries saved me, now they need rescuing

Books provide access to a better way of life, and for many, libraries are the only way they can get to them. That is why I am campaigning to save them and you should, too

From Karin Slaughter: Libraries saved me, now they need rescuing | Books | The Guardian

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The inside poop on librarians' daily adventures

It’s safe to say that the library-going public was shocked and horrified by what he did. It’s also safe to say that nobody who has ever worked at a public library was the least bit surprised.

From The inside poop on librarians' daily adventures

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The facilitated collection

Collections have been central to library identity – we have discussed how library collections are changing in a network environment elsewhere (Collection Directions: The Evolution of Library Collections and Collecting – PDF). Support for the discovery, curation and creation of resources in research and learning practices continues to evolve. In this blog entry I discuss one element of these changes, the emergence of what I call the facilitated collection, a coordinated mix of local, external and collaborative services assembled around user needs

From The facilitated collection - Lorcan Dempsey's Weblog

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'Speak up before there's nothing left': UK authors rally for National Libraries Day

A week of events tied to the nationwide celebration on 6 February is drawing support from writers and campaigners, as libraries face closure around the UK

From 'Speak up before there's nothing left': authors rally for National Libraries Day | Books | The Guardian

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The secret world of membership libraries

Public libraries are a relatively new phenomenon. Before the 1880s, when Andrew Carnegie started funding the more than 1,600 library buildings that bear his name, most libraries in America were subscription-based, with members funding and shaping the collections. As free public libraries sprouted up across the United States, membership libraries mostly died off, but 19 non-profit membership libraries still exist, and are reinventing themselves as cultural centers and the coolest coworking spaces you could dream of.

From The secret world of membership libraries - Quartz

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