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Nancy Pearl's Publishing Deal With Amazon

Nancy Pearl and Amazon.com have struck a deal to republish some lesser recognized titles that are favorites of the Book Lust author and librarian hero.

However, not everyone is thrilled with the idea. As reported in The Seattle Times:

...Overnight, this 67-year-old Seattle grandmother has become a greedy betrayer of the small, sometimes-struggling, bookshops that so supported her. "Yes," says J.B. Dickey, owner of the Seattle Mystery Bookshop about such an assessment. "By aligning herself with Amazon, she's turning her back on independents. Amazon is absolutely antithetical to independent bookselling, and, to many of us, truth, justice and the American way."

If things sound like they've gotten a little heated over Pearl's latest project, they have.

On Wednesday, Amazon.com announced it was issuing "Nancy Pearl's Book Lust Rediscoveries series, a line of Pearl's favorite, presently out-of-print books to share with readers hungry for her expert recommendations."

About six books a year would be published in versions that include print books and eBooks, says the Seattle-headquartered merchandising Goliath that in 2010 had sales of $34 billion, or about $1,077 per second.

Is the Loss of Objective Search a Bad Thing?

Imagine a research database, that upon searching for "wind energy," gives top results about the benefits of turbine technology to one student, while another student (with a different search history, or in a different state) is instead shown articles that focus on the noise and vertigo that wind turbines produce. Sound fishy? Google has unveiled a more personal search that does exactly this sort of thing, called "Search, plus Your World. Is this more about advertising revenue than providing access to information? For a nice review of the issue, see a competitor's Escape your search engine Filter Bubble! When, if ever, would you want filtered results?

Ten Stories That Shaped 2011

It's time again to look back at the good, the bad, and the ugly library stories of the past year.

Wonderful Polish Christmas Tree Made from Books ...& a How-To

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Last Saturday we made first ever Christmas tree from books built in Poland. It is standing in the University Library of <a href="http://www.uwm.edu.pl/en/">UWM in Olsztyn</a>. It's 2,5 meter tall, and made from more than 1600 books. Mainly Orwell's 1984, and Picture this by Joseph Heller.

Canadian Library Association Dismayed by Seizure of Occupy Wall Street Movement Library

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http://clagov.wordpress.com/2011/11/18/ows-library/ The Canadian Library Association (CLA) is dismayed by the reported seizure of The People’s Library, which had been operated by the New York Occupy Wall Street movement, and echos the support of the American Library Association for the volunteers who are working to re-establish the library. CLA President Karen Adams stated: “The Occupy Movement libraries are meeting the information needs of specific communities, and are documenting the history of those communities. Libraries are critical to an open and democratic society.

Milwaukee budget proposal for 2012 would roll back library cuts

In a rare bit of good news, Milwaukee appears poised to restore some funding to the public library system,

"Milwaukee Public Libraries would be open longer hours and expand their educational programs for children, under the 2012 city budget that Mayor Tom Barrett will unveil Tuesday.

Barrett said he's seeking to roll back the library service cuts of previous years, in recognition of the libraries' importance in helping residents improve their lives.

As recent statistics show increasing poverty in Milwaukee, Barrett said, "I remain convinced that education, and access to education, and access to books, is one of the best things we can do to combat that. We're trying to foster a positive learning environment.""

Michael Hart, Project Gutenberg Founder Dies

From Infodocket, news of the passing of Michael Hart, creator of Project Gutenberg.

Here are two passages from an obituary written by Greg Newby:

Michael S. Hart left a major mark on the world. The invention of eBooks was not simply a technological innovation or precursor to the modern information environment. A more correct understanding is that eBooks are an efficient and effective way of unlimited free distribution of literature. Access to eBooks can thus provide opportunity for increased literacy. Literacy, the ideas contained in literature, creates opportunity.

In July 2011, Michael wrote these words, which summarize his goals and his lasting legacy: “One thing about eBooks that most people haven’t thought much is that eBooks are the very first thing that we’re all able to have as much as we want other than air. Think about that for a moment and you realize we are in the right job.”

Here is Michael Hart's obituary on the Project Gutenberg Website.

WorldCat Turns Forty

News today from OCLC that WorldCat has turned the big 4-0. Some more statistics are available.

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Did one invention lead to the decline of newspapers?

What led to the decline of news?
Look, this post has a point. By now it should be obvious: One invention did not lead to the decline of newspapers, and one firm did not do it either. The loss of readers and the loss of ads came from the accumulation of a number of events. Who is responsible? Let’s count. We have blamed Craigslist, other online classified sites, Overture, NSF funding, Silicon Valley’s ecosystem, the efforts of many clever computer scientists, and the efforts of many bloggers. And that is just the short version of the story. The problems with newspapers did not arise at the hand of a single invention or a single firm. It was a gang.

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Vatican to Digitize Prohibited Archives

Hot on the heels of their successful iPhone app/Apple Store and drive-through confessional, the BBC News reports that the Vatican has announced plans to digitize their pornography collection and make it available online to paying subscribers. Given what the church has planned for the project's profits, here's hoping they learn lessons from the the New York Times paywall loopholes. Is anyone in on the Indulgentia beta?

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All The News That's Fit To Sell

The New York Times is again playing with online subscriptions. A new model unveiled today gives you 20 article views a month before you hit a paywall. Other online papers have tried to charge for access with limited success. It's been interesting to watch the news models and industry develop over time.

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Small Fire Extinguished at Library of Congress

Washington Post : The Madison Building at the Library of Congress in Washington has reopened Friday after being briefly evacuated because of a small electrical fire in the basement.

The fire broke out in the morning and was contained to a basement. D.C. fire department spokesman Pete Piringer says the fire stemmed from an electrical problem involving a generator, but the exact cause has yet to be determined.

U.S. Capitol Police say there were no injuries and no immediate reports of damages. The building on Independence Avenue was evacuated and neighboring streets were shut down.

Additional details from The Hill.

Lost Jewish Texts Show Up in New York

As the Nazi's power grew in the early 1930s, a Jewish librarian living in Frankfurt published a catalogue of of 15,000 books he'd collected.

When the war hit, large portions of the collections disappeared, a frighteningly common occurrence with Jewish literature and writing in Germany just before and during World War II. Yet somehow many of these books made their way to America, to the shelves of the Leo Baeck Institute where they were recently re-discovered.

More from the New York Times.

Are libraries finished? Five arguments for and against

The BBC News Magazine asks the question and provides both yea and nay answers.

"But no matter how eloquently Poet Laureate Carol Ann Duffy or author Colin Dexter extol their virtues, the fact is library visitor numbers - like their budgets - are falling.

So what can the internet provide that a library can't, and when is there simply no online substitute for a trip to your local library? Here are five examples on either side"

Ten Stories That Shaped 2010

It's time again to take a look at the memorable headlines of the year.

10. YouTube Sensations

Although viral videos are nothing new, libraries found themselves involved in a few catchy clips this year, and even got Old Spice guy involved in their cause.

9. Libraries and DVDs and Netflix, Oh My

Libraries check out a lot of movies, in case you haven't heard. A library touting their use of Netflix, however,

Eighteen Popular Library Stories of 2010

via WestchesterLibAssoc (@wlany)

18 Popular Library Stories of 2010

Here’s a list of the library-related articles which have most interested iLibrarian readers over the past year.

2010 State of America’s Libraries Report
ACRL 2010 Top Ten Trends in Academic Libraries
IFLA World Report 2010
Top 30 Library iPhone Apps – Part 1
Top 30 Library iPhone Apps – Part 2
Top 30 Library iPhone Apps – Part 3
5 Things the Library of Congress is Archiving Online
British Library to Offer Free eBook Downloads
Top Ten Social Media Competencies for Librarians
12 User Points of Need – Where to Place Your Services Online
Libraries and Cloud Computing
10 Librarian Blogs To Read in 2010
October 1st is Follow a Library Day on Twitter
Online Tools Your Library Needs Now & Why
11 Ways to Promote a Great Top 10 Book List
13 Ways (and 147 Tools) to Help Your Library Save Money on Technology
Congrats Movers and Shakers
31 Cataloging and Metadata Blogs in 2010

This entry was posted on Friday, December 10th, 2010 at 12:52 pm and is filed under Libraries, Library 2.0, Library Services, Lists. You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0 feed. You can skip to the end and leave a response. Pinging is currently not allowed.

Amazon Selling Kindle Version of Wikileaks

Among its many services, Amazon.com offers hosting for websites in the form of data storage. When Wikileaks dumped a massive cache of diplomatic cables onto the Internet, it didn't take long for some technologically minded people to find out that Amazon had been hosting Wikileaks' data and content for quite some time. Yet, after the blow up over the cables, Amazon tossed Wikileaks from their servers, siting violations of their terms of service.

So make of this what you will, but Amazon UK is selling a Kindle version of the Wikileaks data. You can also have a look at the customer comments.

2010 I Love My Librarian Award Winners

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FYI - Just released today http://www.ilovelibraries.org/lovemylibrarian/2010/10winners.cfm Congratulations to the 10 winners of this year's I Love My Librarian Award! Thank you to the 2000 library supporters who sent in nominations. Read on to learn more about this year's winners.

Library of Congress Blocks Wikileaks

From The Guardian:

The Library of Congress tonight joined the education department, the commerce department and other government agencies in confirming that the ban is in place.

Although thousands of leaked cables are freely available on the Guardian, New York Times and other newspaper websites, as well as the WikiLeaks site, the Obama administration insists they are still classified and, as such, have to be protected.

Smithsonian Censors Itself at the Behest of the Government

The Smithsonian Museum has been under pressure from Catholics and congressmen to pull pieces of an exhibit focusing on homosexuality and homosexual Americans. From NPR:

At least one critic has accused the Smithsonian of caving in to pressure from Catholics and from two Republican members of Congress. Representative Eric Cantor of Virginia called the exhibition "an outrageous use of taxpayer money." A spokesperson for incoming House Speaker John Boehner told The Hill newspaper that "Smithsonian officials should either acknowledge the mistake or be prepared to face tough scrutiny beginning in January."

More from NPR.

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