International

Library troubles in Canada

Two LISNews readers sent in stories about Canadian libraries this week. Janet Clark points us to The Globe and Mail

Friendships in Claresholm [Alberta], a town of 3,622, have dissolved. Smiles on the street have been replaced by people who shuffle by with their heads down.

News of screaming matches and an anonymous leaflet campaign swept through the streets like a prairie grass fire. A flood of letters poured in to the weekly newspaper.

The municipality wound up in court recently, pitted against some prominent citizens.

All over a library.

Meanwhile, zamiel gives us a CBC item about library closings in Regina, Saskatchewan:

REGINA - The Regina Library System recently announced that it will close the Dunlop Art Gallery and three library branches in 2004. Patrons are questioning the decision, which will eliminate 27 jobs and a number of library services.

"I really feel that this is a blow to the city and the province," said art historian and Dunlop Gallery patron Annie Gerin. "To me, this is not just related to the library. There's a much broader cultural issue here that hasn't been discussed at all by the board."

Librarians Seek Improved Access to Foreign Journals

AllAfrica.com Says For many libraries in Africa without access to foreign journals, the problem may be one of a lack of communication rather than a lack of resources, according to a seminar for librarians which took place on 8 November 2003. The event, held in conjunction with a meeting of the West African branch of the Standing Conference of African Universities in Accra, Ghana, found that although many university libraries were no longer able to afford any international journals at their standard rate, awareness of opportunities to acquire them at special discounts, or even free of charge, is limited.

The West's Secret Marshall Plan for the Mind

Originally published in the International Journal of Intelligence and Counter Intelligence (vol. 16, no. 3 (July/Sept. 2003) pp. 409-427), The West's Secret Marshall Plan for the Mind by John P.C. Matthews is an article about a little-known operation under which more than 10
million books and journals were sent to scholars and professionals in
Eastern Europe and the Soviet Union during the Cold War. More than 500
publishers in Europe and the U.S. cooperated.

Mainland Chinese Visiting Hong Kong Buying More Banned Books

The Voice Of America News has This One that says Tourists from mainland China are coming to Hong Kong in increasing numbers. Many come to sightsee and shop and, on average, spend more than the typical European or American tourist in the city. But the money not only goes toward jewelry and designer labels. An increasing number of Chinese tourists are snapping up books banned on the mainland.

Role of Australian Libraries in the Online Environment

Sandra Henderson writes: "The Australian Parliament has released a major report "The Role of Libraries in the Online Environment". The report can be found here and submissions made to the Senate Committee which produced the report can be found here."

Neglect of Australian library resources a national trend

A Short One From Australia quotes Rupert Murdoch "Lack of public, private and government funding has driven our libraries to downsize and cost-cut at the very time they should be at their most productive," he said.

"The number of Australian students at higher education has steadily grown, but the staff at our university and research libraries have had to be reduced."

The majority welcomes us with open arms [Iraq Reality Check]

"I have been serving in Iraq for over five months as a soldier with Company A, 2nd Battalion of the 503rd Airborne Infantry Regiment, otherwise known as "The Rock."


More..., via Mefi. More Genuine Leadership!

Malaysian National Library to start digital library on Islam

A Short Piece Says The National Library is planning to launch the International Islamic Digital Library (IIDL) during the Organisation of the Islamic Conference (OIC) Summit.

Its director-general Datuk Zawiyah Baba said the National Library had been working on the project since 2001 in collaboration with the Multimedia Development Corporation and major institutions and also institutions on Islam in Malaysia.

The festival of school libraries

News From Russia has a Short Piece that says The wife of the Russian President, Ludmila Putin, has opened a festival of school libraries - "Bibliobraz." The aim of the festival is to draw the attention of the whole country to "the difficult but so important profession of librarians," said the wife of the President, as addressing the participants in the festival.
The festival of school libraries which will be held from September 30 to October 2 in Moscow, will be attended by the winners of the school-library contest from all regions of Russia, the workers of literature and art, schoolchildren and representatives of the Education Ministry.

Uzbekistan: Privatization In Publishing Means Books Are Often Out Of Reach

An Article From Radio Free Europe says the partial privatization of the publishing sector since independence has increased the price of books to the point where not all parents can afford them.
"Provision for textbooks needs a state-level, national policy. What does such a policy consist of? For this there must be state protectionism. Protectionism means favorable credits and donations. Value-added taxes must be omitted from the printing of textbooks and literature for children," Abakirov said.

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