April 2011

Skimming Off the Top…for a Faux Fireplace??

From North Jersey News: The former director of the Haledon Free Public Library was arrested Friday on an official misconduct charge in connection with online purchases she allegedly paid with library funds.

Judith Erk, currently an assistant librarian at Manchester Regional High School in Haledon, is charged with one count of official misconduct and one count of theft by deception in excess of $75,000. Each charge carries a maximum penalty of up to 10 years in state prison. North Haledon Municipal Court Judge Harold Cook set Erk’s bail at $50,000. It could not be confirmed late Friday if she had posted bail and was free.

Authorities executed a search warrant of Erk’s home Friday morning, according to authorities, where evidence pertaining to the case was recovered. Items seized included electronics, kitchen appliances, jewelry and a faux fireplace.

Should we allow porn in libraries?

At Salon.com

We talk to librarians who disagree on whether smut viewing is a defensible First Amendment right

If you found this article while searching for porn that fetishizes bookish bespectacled women, you’re going to be sorely disappointed. In this rare case, we’re talking about porn in libraries, not librarians in porn. That’s because earlier this week, the Los Angeles City Council voted against filtering out all porn on library computers. Just the day before, the Brooklyn Public Library publicly defended patrons’ right to watch any legal adult content of their choosing. The first case was prompted by an incident in which kids were exposed to pornography being watched by an adult on a library computer; and the second followed a physical altercation between a man watching porn on a library computer and another man waiting to use said computer.

Full piece at Salon

Advocacy: public library as amenity and necessity

Lorcan Dempsey, Advocacy: public library as amenity and necessity
Downward pressure on the cost of public services creates issues for public libraries. A growth in advocacy is a natural response, and this in turn creates pressing questions about value, and in particular about how different stakeholders potentially perceive value differently. Who one is addressing, and with what message, has become very important.

Forget Goodnight Moon!

Forget Goodnight Moon! Frustrated father’s bedtime story titled Go The F*** To Sleep

It’s not exactly the kind of language you want your children learning at an early age. But a sleep-deprived father has expressed his frustration over his daughter’s reluctance to go to bed with an expletive-ridden new bedtime story.

Adam Mansbach’s new book, which is titled Go The F*** To Sleep is designed and illustrated like any children’s story – but a quick glance at the title (as well as a clear warning on the back cover) will confirm that the contents are strictly for grown-ups.

In an ode that empathises with fellow parents of young children, the 34-year-old takes in all the frustrating ruses kids will use to hold off sleep, such as requests for one more story, a glass of water, another bathroom trip or a different teddy bear.

Read more: http://www.dailymail.co.uk/femail/article-1381178/Forget-Goodnight-Moon-Frustrated-fathers-bedtime-story-titled-Go-F–To-Sleep.html#ixzz1KrBuummL

A Book Store. That’s Right. Book, Singular.

A Book Store. That’s Right. Book, Singular.
The book is Mr. Kessler’s account of NASA’s 2008 Phoenix Mars Lander mission, reported during 90 days inside mission control, in Tucson, alongside 130 leading scientists and engineers. Publishers Weekly calls the book a “slightly offbeat firsthand account of scientific determination and stubborn intellect” that “delivers a fascinating journey of discovery peppered with humor.”

The store is part marketing ploy, to be sure (Mr. Kessler is a creative director at an advertising agency), but also part meditation on the meaning of the book in an age of e-readers and a bankrupt Borders.

The Repurposed Library, Books as Objets d’Art

No repurposed librarians here, whew…From the New York Times:

Lisa Occipinti makes functional objects like lamps and sewing boxes out of old books, selling them on Etsy.

She now has a book of her own, “The Repurposed Library,” out this week from Stewart, Tabori & Chang. In it, she offers readers a how-to guide to making household objects from, well, books, like a mirror, a lamp and a fire screen, as well as the mobile shown on the cover:

Public Libraries: No Longer for the Literate

Elaine sent over a link to Public Libraries: No Longer for the Literate:
“With local and state governments facing significant budget challenges, it might be time to take a closer look at the non-essential services they are providing. Nobody is facing imminent death because they haven’t seen season one of Who’s the Boss? on DVD. Yet local libraries might be soaking the taxpayers to make watching Alyssa Milano’s pre-teen years a reality for all.”

Do we really need our libraries?

Do we really need our libraries?
“The e-book craze will wipe out 90 percent of bookstores in a decade, the Journal forecasts. This message has apparently not hit home with the people trying to save our financially struggling libraries here in Mecklenburg County, but it’s one being asked in a serious way in even broker places like Illinois, where Fox Chicago News recently questioned whether the state needed all of its 799 library branches, or even half of them. It’s a question we should be asking here, where it costs roughly $40 million a year to keep the library system running. After cuts, a whopping 20 branches remain open in Mecklenburg.”
{Thanks to Carla for the link!}

The days of the law library being a showpiece of a firm are over

Take These Books… Please
“A Chief Operating Officer in the crowd backed me up and said that the days of the library being a showpiece of a firm are over. I asked him what is the “touchstone” of a firm these days (some central place where everyone feels connected). Is it the library? Is it the break rooms? Conference Center? Bathrooms?? I think we finally agreed that in this day and age, the touchstone of a firm isn’t something that is based on a physical space.”