February 2007

Ready for Retirement and Ready to Read/Travel/Write…

The Nesses are a his and her couple of librarians. Mark Nesse, 63, has served as the director or the Everett WA library for thirty years; wife Sheila Nesse 64 is a reference librarian at Mukilteo Library, part of the Sno-Isle Regional Library System. Both are retiring today.

The two look back fondly at their careers and also take a look at how they will spend the years ahead at Herald Net.

Student Debt Survey

Michael McGrorty writes “I have put together a twenty-question survey for graduates of library and information science programs. The survey is intended to determine the degree to which student loan indebtedness affects that population. The results will be used in a study of the subject, and released when compiled. Thanks in advance for your participation.

Take survey at: surveymonkey.com

Posthumous novel becomes commercial hit

Some books sell because Oprah Winfrey wants you to buy them. Others get help from a major prize, a controversy, a movie tie-in, a famous author or an especially clever marketing campaign.

And some, such as Irene Nemirovsky’s “Suite Francaise,” sell because they’re great books.

Born in 1903, Nemirovsky was a Ukrainian Jew who emigrated to Paris as a young woman. She was arrested in 1942 during the Nazi occupation of France and soon died at Auschwitz, where her husband, Michael Epstein, was later killed.

Story continued here.

Ripped-Off Congressional Videos – Get it Here

Kelly writes “Today’s LISNEWs about C-Span dinging Nancy Pelosi using some of their footage reminded me of a story from today’s stash of Boing Boing articles. In this story, this guy is ripping Congress webcasts, which are streaming only, and archiving them! (Like a good librarian?) This is cool. Here’s the scoop from the article:

`The U.S. Congress provides webcasts for many of their hearings. In all cases, the hearings are streaming only, in many cases they are “live only” (no archive of the stream). In some cases, the committees even put a “copyright, all rights reserved” notice on the hearings! This is really dumb. So, I’ve started ripping all congressional streams starting with the house and posting them in a nonproprietary format for download, tagging, review, and annotation at Google Video and another copy at the Internet Archive (just to prove this is a nondenominational issue.

This is a Tom Sawyer hack, a la “painting this fence is *loads* of fun!” I intend to prove to the Congressional webmasters that it is so much fun doing their web sites for them that they’ll want to do it themselves so that I go away. Until then, look for “Carl Malamud on behalf of the U.S. Congress” for official news.

Link to Boing article
Link to ripped videos

Fire victim upset at library`s request

Bearkat writes “”A Maryville (Missouri) fire victim is outraged at a library`s request that came just days after his family`s home went up in smoke…(they) are upset with a letter they received asking that they get their insurance company to pay for books that burned in a fire.””

OpenCongress site launches

OpenCongress, launched yesterday, “brings together official government data with news and
blog coverage to give you the real story behind each bill.”


OpenCongress is a joint project of the Sunlight Foundation and the
Participatory Politics Foundation. It brings together on one site
congressional info from Thomas, news from Google News, blog posts from
Google Blog Search and Technorati, campaign contribution info from the
Center for Responsive Politics, and their own ‘congressional gossip’ blog.

House Republicans Need a Copyright Refresher

From today’s New York Times (via CNET):

The House Republican Study Committee issued a news release accusing Speaker Nancy Pelosi of “pirating” 16 copyrighted clips of House floor debate from the public affairs network C-Span by including them on her new blog, The Gavel.

I guess they missed the lesson on government works being generally immune to copyright restrictions. Meanwhile, GooTube is making headlines for aggressively removing fair use parodies and snippets.

Book disposal prompts librarian to action

Interesting Story from Cal Poly Pomona’s library, where Bruce Emerton started an online petition calling for a moratorium on the disposal of books, and got a visit from the cops. Emerton, a longtime Cal Poly librarian, launched the online petition called “Save Our Books” three weeks ago at www.calpolylibrary.com because he was upset about what he says are the dumping of books. He is calling for a halt to the disposal of books, journals and other printed materials and an independent audit of all items that have been discarded.

“We’ve gone beyond weeding. We’re dumping,” Emerton said.