December 2022

Ten Stories That Shaped 2022

It’s again time (for the 20th time!) for a look back at the notable library stories from the last year.

The Good

10. Lizzo at LOC

In September, Lizzo toured the Library of Congress, stopping to play a crystal flute that once belonged to James Madison.

9. New Federal Open Access Memo

In August, another federal policy guideline was released encouraging publishers "to make the results of taxpayer-supported research immediately available to the American public at no cost."

8. More Institutions End Late Fees

Libraries continue to drop the policy of assessing late fees for books returned past their due date.

7. Controlled Digital Lending Gains Support

News flash: libraries are allowed to lend books. And there is no legal provision restricting the format for doing so. Controlled Digital Lending makes use of this, although the practice faces challenges.

The Bad

6. WorldCat Monopoly Continues

After making waves by announcing a new, free shared catalog service called "MetaDoor," Clarivate responded to a lawsuit against the plan from OCLC by shuttering the project.

5. Theft of Presidential Documents

Unless you were hiding under a rock this year, you heard the story of a certain former President making off with confidential records.

4. Library Vendors and Surveillance Capitalism

The practices of several companies in the library industry also profiting from the monetization of personal data have made for an uneasy mix with privacy advocates.

The Ugly

3. E-Book Licensing Hits Snags

Multiple efforts to curtail publisher moves at making more restrictive electronic book agreements, including in Connecticut, Maryland, and New York, resulted in limited success.

2. Labor Disputes Aplenty

As documented in multiple reports and studies, library workers are enduring many hostilities in their working environments. It’s little wonder, then, that many worker movements happened in response this year, including in Illinois, Texas, and Washington.

1. Book Bannings Continue

The ongoing and very widespread challenges to library materials is again this year’s top story. How has your library been impacted?