Dan G.

Tourists in the Library

Saw this article in the Univ. of Tennessee student newspaper titled “ Library not a place for frivolity “. It’s mildly satirical (in my opinion) but raises some valid points. For example, “why do you come to the library at midnight to get on Facebook?” Or “Why come to the library just to check it out in the middle of the night?”

I know, the newly remodeled Commons at Hodges Library is very nice.. And I’m familiar with the “Library as Place” idea that factored into it’s creation. But is the campus library really supposed to be the new student center? Or a computer lab? Maybe it’s the way libraries have to go in the 21st century but at times I miss the peace and quiet.

Ray Bradbury: Fahrenheit 451 Misinterpreted

Somebody writes LA Weekly Reports: Bradbury still has a lot to say, especially about how people do not understand his most literary work, Fahrenheit 451, published in 1953. It is widely taught in junior high and high schools and is for many students the first time they learn the names Aristotle, Dickens and Tolstoy.

Now, Bradbury has decided to make news about the writing of his iconographic work and what he really meant. Fahrenheit 451 is not, he says firmly, a story about government censorship. Nor was it a response to Senator Joseph McCarthy, whose investigations had already instilled fear and stifled the creativity of thousands.”

One Citzen’s Response to Mandatory Filtering

Anonymous Patron writes “Here’s a letter to the editor from a local citizen assailing the proposed Illinois mandatory filtering bill:

“If Joyce or Smith [the sponsor and a promoter of the filtering bill] wishes to censor things coming into his own home, that is their right. I respect that. But neither man was appointed or elected to be the official censor for this area.

The library is not your home. It is a public forum. The library exists as a repository for information in many forms and media. It is a public resource and is open to all. Censorship is antithetical to the basic function and purpose of a library.

I also wish that any would-be censor would have the courage to simply state that he or she does not believe in freedom of speech.

Just say that you do not trust your fellow citizens to decide for themselves what they can safely read, or see or hear. Just tell us that you have appointed yourself to be the official judge of what free Americans can do.”

Interesting commentary, given all the talk by some lisnews.org commenters that “the people” want filtering in the library.”

New FGI Discussions: December 11, 2006

This past week at Free Government Information (FGI)
(http://freegovinfo.info ), we continue new poll looking into reasons why we have over 1500 daily visitors yet suffer a dearth of comments.

Also this week, December BOTM Duane McCollum and the FGI volunteers posting the following stories:

Duane’s postings:

Volunteer postings:

If you use Bloglines (http://www.bloglines.com/) or some other RSS reader, consider subscribing to the FGI Feed at http://freegovinfo.info/blog/feed to get FGI stories as they are posted. 160 people already have.

Cybils blog book awards

tangognat writes “Almost every other organization has book awards, so why not bloggers? The Cybils are now taking nominations for outstanding books for children and young adults published in 2006. You can nominate a book in the following categories:

The graphic novel category in particular could use more nominations, but feel free to nominate whatever you want. One book per category please. Nominations close on November 20th!”

Texas Tech Library Theft – The Details Come Out

kctipton writes “The Sunday Lubbock Avalanche-Journal had a cover story about how a student staffer working under little supervision on the night shift sold approximately $75,000 (face value) of almost-new library books for close to $15,000.

Between March 30 and July 31 [2006], police believe Nunley sent or arranged to send more than 1,000 books to an Oregon-based online book buyer specializing in textbooks and nonfiction.


Only full-time employees handle the roughly 40,000 to 50,000 unmarked, brand-new books that the library adds annually. But as a circulation desk employee, Nunley could get the books in near mint condition, bearing only red stamps identifying them as the property of Tech and a library call number marked in the book’s first few pages.

His late-night shift gave him opportunity and little supervision.

In late March, a person using Nunley’s name, home address and an online payment system linked to a bank account offered five slightly used books to the online bookbuyer McKenzie Books. The account grew to be one of the business’s top 30 high-volume sellers, McKenzie Books owner Jim Smith said.

It’s a long article. Read on for more revelations.

What I find amusing and a little strange is that the reporter got Tech to admit that they aren’t intending to inventory their collection (which is supposedly 2.5 million books), and they hint that they never have. It’s very possible that they’ve been ripped off before and won’t ever know it.”