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From the ALA Press office:
WASHINGTON, D.C.—In a new budget released today from Representative Paul Ryan (R-WI), the House Budget Committee Chairman denounces the critical role that the Institute of Museum and Library Services (IMLS) plays in supporting civic engagement, literacy and lifelong learning in more than 123,000 libraries nationwide. Rep. Ryan recommends that the federal government not have a role in libraries and that Congress shift the federal agency’s responsibilities to the private sector in his 2015 fiscal year budget resolution.
Today, American Library Association (ALA) President Barbara Stripling released the following statement in response to Rep. Ryan’s budget (pdf):
“We were shocked to learn that Representative Paul Ryan recommended eliminating the Institute of Museum and Library Services, the agency that administers the primary source of federal funding to libraries. Libraries depend on the support they receive from the Institute of Museum and Library Services to help patrons learn new skills, find job opportunities and access reading materials that they otherwise could not afford. More than $180 million has been allocated to the Institute for Museum and Library Services through September 2014 to help libraries make information available to the citizens they serve. -- Read More
The six, including a library employee, were attacked by the two red-shouldered hawks, but only three of the people suffered scratches to their heads when the birds dive-bombed at them outside the Port Orange Regional Library, said county spokesman Dave Byron. No one was hospitalized, he said.
Teleread asks if authors should be using the Snapchat social media platform to promote themselves. Why?
"In this article on Brand Driven Digital, Nick Westergaard gives Snapchat a look and explains why it matters. Here’s why young adult authors and publishers should pay attention: “nearly half of Americans 12–24 use Snapchat.”
Oh? The exact audience that young adult writers crave."
This begs the question: Should libraries be using Snapchat?
"Reading is really important, and we worked really hard on these," said 7 year-old Anna Twilling.
It was the kind of project her troop, Troop 4, had searched for.
"You could learn in a book," said 5 year-old Sadie Twilling.
Today teens and young adults are using libraries, Shannon says, "in a variety of ways: from homework help and school support, to accessing print and downloadable books, and engaging in creative and innovative programs which help them pursue interests, connect to mentors and other teens and expand learning in the after-school hours."
In other words, libraries and librarians are teaching teens a valuable lesson: Know thy shelves.
Way, way back in the 20th century, American teenagers turned to the local public library as a great good place to hang out. It was a hotspot for meeting up, and sharing thoughts with, other like-minded people – in books and in the flesh. It was a wormhole in the universe that gave us tunnels into the past and into the future. It was a quiet spot in an ever-noisier world.
The library was a gentle mentor. It accepted us as we were and let us grow at our own pace – as teens are wont to do. It taught us about sports and sex. About fashion and finance. About life and death.
It showed us how to search for information. How to bring intelligent, like-minded people together. Even how to build and program computers.
This is not to say that Americans who love libraries—nearly all of us apparently—shouldn’t be alert to the threats to those libraries. The recession catalyzed several consecutive years of budget reductions, which in turn were aggravated by the automated federal cuts that came in last year’s sequestration, a particularly big hit to libraries, especially those in schools. With its library threatened by closure in 2012, one city in Michigan was left to host a “Book Burning Party”—a clever hoax that is credited with saving a vital community resource. Eight states don’t give a single penny to public libraries.
"Following on from my lecture in the Netherlands, here is a list of things that I feel you should be able to do in a local library. With acknowledgement to Thomas Frey from the Da Vinci Institute in the USA, who also spoke at the conference."
Listen to music
The rage is to compare everything in creation to a business. But be careful when doing so with America's public libraries. They are civic and service institutions, not profit-making corporations. A major caveat!
Just the same, in a library context, I was intrigued when President Obama once again singled out Costco for its success. It's delighted shareholders in recent years while paying hourly workers around $21 per hour on the average. Granted, Costco isn't your typical retail chain. It focuses on upscale markets (and bulk purchases). By contrast, public libraries need to serve everyone, especially the poor. That's yet another caveat.
Still, in Costco, I see a few lessons for public libraries in the digital era: