March 2004

Location, porn vex library

The Columbian ties together filtering and a failed bond request to expand library facilities in the greater Vancouver, Washington area.

Which “ography” was the biggest obstacle for the recent library bond?

Pornography, say many people who used the election to voice their opposition to the regional library’s Internet policy.

Geography, say those who analyzed the election results.

Vatican Library begins using computer chips to identify volumes

Thinking about cutting edge technology in libraries? Think, The Vatican. Catholic News Service Reports the Vatican Library has begun a different way of tracking and identifying its massive and precious collections.

Starting last year, the library began inserting so-called Radio Frequency Identification, or RFID, computer chips in books available on its open shelves as a way to find misplaced tomes.

used bookstore blames librarians for closing

deborah writes “The Avenue Victor Hugo Bookshop in Boston is closing, and they post a long list of people they blame, reprinted from John Usher’s The Hound. One of them is “Librarians–once the guardians, who now watch over their budgets instead–for destroying books which would last centuries to find room for disks and tapes which disintegrate in a few years and require costly maintenance or replacement by equipment soon to be obsolete.” Their list doesn’t include the fact that most locals thought they’d closed two years ago.”

Librarians are by no means the only group castigated by Mr. Usher. Writers, reviewers, publishers, teachers, and the general public are all stained with his rag of opprobrium.

Out-of-control kid patron gets zapped with Taser

librarydragon1 writes
Was a police officer in Chandler, AZ, justified in using a stun gun on a youngster during a disturbance at the public library? Absolutely, says a 15-member citizen’s panel, which recently ruled unanimously in favor of Police Officer Arturo Salazar using an electronic Taser to stun 13-year-old Dominique Laureano at the Chandler Public Library last September.”

Read more from School Library Journal.

Google user calls Google ” A library that’s successful- as opposed to real libraries which lose mone

mdoneil writes “A google advertiser and user refers to google as a library which makes money- as opposed to real libraries, which lose money.
The Tampa Tribune reports on the search engine with interviews with several people including a lawyer who googles his prospective clients and dates.
To balance the story a public librarian was interviewed who stressed the need for authority.”

Here’s the quote:

“I’m an advertiser on Google, but if I came along and posted an article on the benefits of using retractable awnings, I’d be treated like anybody else on Google,” he said. “It’s a library, an Internet library, that’s successful and makes money – as opposed to real libraries, which lose money.

C-Span’s silver anniversary

nbruce writes “My favorite TV program is Book-TV–a whole week-end just devoted to non-fiction.

“Back in 1979, Brian Lamb, the former editor of a media newsletter, was frustrated by the sound-bite coverage of government on the broadcast networks. So he began C-SPAN with a staff of four. Now the network employs 280 people. Its three 24-hour-a-day channels attract 34 million viewers a week. It has a satellite radio service along with 10 Web sites and, this month, a new book based on its signature “Booknotes” program. One out of five Americans tune into C-SPAN’s coverage of Congress at least once or twice a week, not to mention its news conferences, lectures, foreign news shows and archival tapes of Supreme Court arguments and Oval Office conversations.

All this material is produced on an annual budget of $40 million, less than the cost of airing a single TV sitcom. Every basic-cable subscriber pays a nickel a month for the network, which receives zero government funding.

Article at Wall Street Journal

Children’s Classics Being Abridge Too Far

dbryan writes “A story from [Note: You must either be a Salon subscriber, or watch a commercial to view the full article]
describes how the author felt upon discovering that some of her favorite books from childhood such as “The House at Pooh Corner” and “The Wind and the Willows” have been published and sold in ‘Disney-esque’ abridged and altered versions.”
The side-by-side reading of the original works with the Great Illustrated Classic versions are quite telling. Compare to the controversies over colorizing old films.