Tag Archives: Libraries

A Resource Guide to the eBook Revolution

Hello fair readers,

Today, big stuff happened on the libraries and ebooks front. And I tried to write an eloquent and stern “open letter to HarperCollins” type post. But so many people are doing it much better than I can. So instead, I will do something I am good at and point you towards the resources to educate yourself about what is going on and what you can do about it.

First, read the Library Journal article written by Josh Hadro who broke the story. It’s really great reporting. Thank you so much Josh.

HarperCollins Puts 26 Loan Cap on Ebook Circulations

Next, check out the hashtag that started the uprising of librarians in response to that great piece of reporting.


Now read the really amazing blog posts popping up all over the libraryland blogosphere.

The Publisher That Kicked the Hornet’s Nest by theanalogdivide

Library eBook Revolution, Begin by the Librarian in Black

Publishing Industry Forces OverDrive and Other Library eBook Vendors to Take a Giant Step Back by Bobbi Newman

I am altering the deal. Pray I don’t alter it any further. by LibraryRenewal

Questions That Need Answers by David Lee King

Okay you should be pretty briefed by now and also angry/upset/disappointed — however you choose to process this.

Finally, there is this:


That right there is the email HarperCollins has obviously set up specifically for our complaints and suggestions. So let them have it. Tell them what you think and what you have to say about it. Give them any suggestions you have for how to make this right and more importantly if you are angry about this decision (that’s right Librarians, it is okay to be angry) that was made without libraries and librarians having any place or opinion in the matter tell them about it.

You can also @ them on twitter. They live here: http://twitter.com/#!/HarperCollins

And that’s all for now. Have a lovely (but activist filled) weekend.


Shameless Marketing

Fair readers,

Have you checked out The Young Librarian Series yet?  Here is a little taste:

Head on over, tell your friends and tell the people who aren’t actually your friends but who you just talk to at work.  Tell the world!  You know what they say about word of mouth right?

Yeah. Me neither.

Have a lovely week!

Introducing the Young Librarian Series.

My fellow young librarians and library workers:

I am now accepting submissions for an idea that I have been bouncing around for some time now. The Young Librarian Series is is a multimedia project. The basis is going to be a series of video interviews and guest posts on a blog graciously being hosted at tametheweb blogs. (ty Michael!!) Our themes will be generations in the library and being a Gen Y and young Gen X librarian; our experiences, our triumphs, struggles, cool projects that you might want to highlight and so on.

Items the you might want to consider submitting: generational based posts, library inspired art projects, new media projects, such as videos, podcasts, or a created resource. Really the sky is the limit here and I’m very excited to see what people have to contribute.

The goal of The Young Librarian Series is to provide a sense of community for young librarians. A place for us to collaborate, to center ourselves in the field. To brainstorm. To think. To discuss and empower.

My guidelines are basic: you must be a part of Generation Y or young-ish Gen X, so 40 and under. If you just want to bounce ideas off me and send a proposal, that is more than welcome. I don’t care what font you use. I don’t care if there are one inch margins. I want to hear about your ideas, your experiences. And your fellow young librarians want to hear from you as well.

Please note: If I have spoken to you about doing an interview or contributing, its time to start formulating some ideas. Send me an email with any and all questions.

The email: younglibrarianseries[at]gmail[dot]com

I so look forward to hearing from you and please, lets spread the word.

leah the librarian!

Do you need anybody?

Hello fair readers,

Apparently Louisville KY was completely slammed yesterday with an absurd amount of rain.  And of course, we know what this does to libraries…

i assume, the remains of a bookmobile room

i assume, the remains of a bookmobile room

If you go to their website you can also see that their server is pretty much destroyed.

The blog See Also is taking up a collection of donations to help restore the library.  He writes “The initial estimate is $1 million in damage, but they must just be guessing at this point”.   You can also donate directly at:

The Library Foundation, 301 York St., Louisville, KY 40203, Attn: Flood.

Or call, 574-1709 for information.

If you have any spare change or even if you live in the Louisville area and can volunteer to help out, this is now a library in need.

Have a good week fair readers. And the best of luck to Louisville Free Public Library, you are in my thoughts and my prayers.

ALA 2009: A Perspective

Hello fair readers!

As promised, I wanted to go over a bit of what my experience at the American Library Association 2009 was like to endure. And yes, I used the word endure.  It actually did remind me somewhat of going to a outdoor festival.  But with less of this

from Pitchfork 2009

from Pitchfork 2009

And more of this…

From ALA 2009...see the difference?

From ALA 2009...similar right?

This being my very first ALA I wasn’t entirely sure what to expect.  I had several goals, being:

1) meet folks

2) learn stuff

3) have fun

Seems simple right?  Lets go over these starting with my most successful endeavor…1) meet folks.

here be folks!

here be folks!

This is generally what I’m good at…meeting people. I actually enjoy running around a room and introducing myself to people…hopefully not totally weirding them out in the process.  And I can say, 100%, that networking was hands down the best thing I came away from ALA with.  I figured out how to get my card to people, how to start talking about potential future projects with people and most importantly I meet some really amazing peers that make me proud to be a librarian…

this pic is a link to some really rad librarians that you be emulating!

this pic is a link to some really rad librarians that you should be emulating!

So for this, ALA, I will thank you.  I met many people I probably never would have encountered on my own.  And I thank you for that.

So lets get to pesky #2, as this is where my reality check came in.  My goal to “learn stuff” was modest but in reality I wanted to learn a lot.  But when it came to sitting down in a session and listening to people try to teach me?

Well, lets put it this way…..seriously librarians?

I had sessions where the “presenter” didn’t even bother to freaking show up.  There was a powerpoint presentation with an audio recording over it.  And quite frankly, research methods aren’t going to be too enthralling in the first place.  But if you remove that human interaction, I will almost guarantee a zero learning factor.  I went to one insanely brilliant session with The Shanachies (click on the pic above) and really…that was about it.  I did hear that the Neil Gaiman & Craig Thompson session was amazing.  So I will be fair to that.  And I am sure there were some really amazing sessions that I just didn’t go to…

but I learned the following things at what I stupidly chose to attend:  you can publish the same thing over and over again as long as you change it a little; you can publish research that others have already done, just change it a little; you don’t even need to research things you are genuinely interested in…as long as you get published.

As boring as Circle Cats...

As boring as Circle Cats...

Excuse my language but f*ck that.  My reality check was that I saw the librarian I never want to become.  And quite frankly, it scared the hell out of me.  Next ALA I will have to pay special attention to what sessions I go to because I left on Saturday feeling like I was in the wrong profession.

Thankfully my #3 goal came to rescue at just the right time…

Sunday was the day.  It was the day that I remembered why I wanted to become a librarian in the first place.  I met with like-minded people, heard about brave exciting new services and policies, and interacted with people who get the mind going!! Who are doing new and amazingly beautiful things in the library world.  And this, my fair readers, is insanely fun.

Overall ALA was totally worth it.  Even with the reality check.  In fact I would go so far as to say especially with the reality check.  At several points during the conference I had people tell me that I look like a children’s librarian.  And I never really knew how to respond to this…but now I think I do.  Children’s librarians go at things with spunk, energy and a child like positivity that is not to be matched in the profession.  If I can continue on my path in libraries and stay this way…then I am doing something right.  I am happy I went to ALA.  I am happy I came off as a children’s librarian instead of an academic one.  And I am so blessed and pleased to have met with all of you.

It was a lifechanger.



Have a lovely week fair readers.  And stay tuned 🙂

Sensible Shoes

Hello fair readers,

Oh its that time.  It is.  Do you know what time it is???



Oh yeah it’s annual conference time! Woot!

So for reals, this is the time when apparently hordes of librarians in sensible shoes and a driving thrist for galleys decend upon an innocent city doing nothing but minding its own business.

And then look what the library cat dragged in…

You are just another stat to us...

You are just another stat to us...

So actually this is my first conference.  I’m not entirely sure what to expect although the one thing seriously every librarian has told me is to wear sensible shoes.

Leave your manolos at home kids.

Leave your manolos at home kids.

And to pace myself.  And still, I have managed to find 3 things during every time slot that I would like to do.  Here are some of things I am most interested in:

Open Gaming Night 2009

Friday, July 10th, 7-10pm, Hilton in International South ( i have no idea where that is)

Did you doubt for a second that I would miss a chance to meet with fellow librarians *and* gaming nerds? Pssh.  I will ownz the microphone on Rock Band 2.   Dibs on Maps!!

Librarian/Scholar: from reasearch question to results

Saturday, July 11th, 1:30-3pm, Hyatt Regency McCormick in Conf. Ctr. 10 c/d (again, where?)

Since my first article was somewhat of an opinion piece I would really like to get into some concrete research.  I have an idea.  I have some resources.  I have no idea what I’m doing now.  Seriously this session couldn’t be better timed.

Emerald Pimm’s & Canapés Reception

Saturday, July 11, from 5 – 7pm, at the Blackstone, invite only (psst click on that link!)

A really awesome woman I would like to meet will be here.  Nuff said.


Sunday, July 12th, 8pm-2am, Clark St. Ale House

I’m not presenting.  My poster session wasn’t accepted. (cry) But I can still plan a drink-a-thon with some fellow librarians!  Its networking, with beer!

Listening to the Customer: Using Assessment Results to Make a Difference

Monday, July 13th, 8am-10am, McCormick Place West in W-179

But of course I planned for a night of drinking and then promptly at 8am the next morning there is a session I *really* want to attend. No problem…none.

I can handle it all….

hi ya!

hi ya!

So those are just a few of the things I plan on doing…which doesn’t include other dinners, the exhibits and the friends crashing at my place and the 5 other sessions during each of these that I would like to go to….

sensible shoes, sensible shoes, sensible shoes….

taken from CVerwaals flickr page

taken from CVerwaal's flickr page

I can do this.

Have a lovely week fair readers! And enjoy ALA 2009!

This is just to say…

Hello fair readers!

Just a little note to say that I love love love this post:

Getting deeply local at our libraries

And I definitely think you should read it.  I love it when articles/postings can relate not just to the public arena but to academic and special libraries as well.  Her points are well made, pertinent and extremely useful.  Fodder for your local cannon.

pew pew pew!

pew pew pew!

Enjoy and have a lovely Wednesday!

Open forum on technology in libraries.

Hello fair readers!

Over there in the wide world of Facebook, a pretty grand discussion about the influence of technology in libraries has been going.  It was suggested that we move it over to a more user-friendly format that doesn’t restritct you in terms of how long you can rant!

Yes, I mean you Facebook.

Whats with the comment cutoffs guys?

What's with the comment cutoffs guys?

So here is a little background info and then you are more than welcome to go at it in the comments.

I placed a link to this article:

Not-So-Splendid Isolation

An opinion piece written for Library Journal in 2007 about the melding of library services with technology.  It sparked a wonderful conversation/debate on the role of libraries.  I referred to it as “A disturbing article by the guy who wrote a particularly nasty letter to the ed. about my article. He is obviously not a fan of technology…or even delivery of materials at home for seniors…which is a bizarre thing to be against. I think he needs to head back to library school and refresh himself on the ALA Code of Ethics.”

But there are really good arguments on both sides.  Most put a little more eloquently than mine. 😉 One commenter has noted:

i think technophiles and free-market drones are causing restructuring where educators and librarians would do better. and i think too in a wider sense, the issue is ‘should markets be the core of society, market aesthetics or logic?'”

And then it spread into videogames and literacy and beyond.  One commenter noting:

“Regarding the Wii issue, I just don’t think it’s the job of a librarian to decide that kids shouldn’t be allowed to play video games. I’m not a politician, or a clergyman, or any other role involved in imposing rules on society.”

So do you have anything you would like to add to this debate?  Do you think that technology in the library is about more than just the spread of information?  I welcome this debate onto La de da and as I’m sure we all know, keep it friendly folks.

Taken from Olivanders flickr

Taken from Olivander's flickr

An Argument for More, Not Less, in Tough Times

Hello fair readers,

An annoucement today has really made me sit back and think.  Chicago Public Library is considering laying off workers and I’m sure they are not the  only ones.  What library isn’t suffering from massive budget cuts right now?  The economy is hitting its bottom, correct?

I blame you...and you...and you.

I blame you...and you...and that short one in the middle.

And  this has been going on for awhile now.  A quick Google News search pulls up many articles from the past year or so commenting on libraries during tough economic times, with headlines like: Patrons flock to libraries as the economy struggles.  The news is the same.  Patrons needs are increasing.  Meanwhile library budgets are being slashed.

This, my fair readers, is a huge mistake.

This is the first image that comes up when googling huge mistake

This is the first image that comes up when googling "huge mistake"

Libraries, in every setting, are invaluable during these times.  What has led us to this point? Ignorance and a lack of common sense or knowledge.  I’m not saying the people responsible are undereducated.  In fact many have their MBAs I’m sure.  But there is a degree and then there is knowledge.  And these can be two different things.

Libraries provide information.  They are the safety net in times of woe and in times of need.  We are here to arm citizens with knowledge and information to prevent future economic crises.

Knowledge is power...not just a cliche.

Knowledge is power...not just a cliche.

Slashing budgets, cutting corners, laying off workers, decreasing hours.  These are not the answer.  Not right now.  I am not saying that all libraries are in perfect fiscal working order.  I’m sure some need fine tuning.  But that is certainly not the case when CPL has announced it may be laying off over 100 workers, which is sure to hit every branch and every neighborhood.

And for those people who think this isn’t possible, that people will not want to continue to fund libraries in times of need.  Let us take an example, one I commonly turn to, with Kalamazoo Public Library.  As mentioned in a previous post, this library went up for a millage renewal at a time when most libraries would never want to and this millage passed on May 5, 2009.   This is a perfect example of a community that realizes it needs the library in times like these.

And they do.

So this is my argument for more, not less, when it comes to supporting our libraries in tough economic times.  This is when people need us the most.  This is our time to shine.  But in order to shine, we need our funding and staff protected and maintained.  Because we are not just the preservers of the past but also the building blocks for the future.

library addition at CSU - Dominquez Hills

library addition at CSU - Dominquez Hills

If your library is having funding issues, contact your elected representatives and let them know about the importance of this issue.

Have a great weekend fair readers.

Good News for People Who Like Good News (vol. 2)

Hello fair readers!

Just a small note to celebrate


My first article is being published in the May 1st edition of Library Journal.  Here is a linky for your viewing pleasure:


I hope you enjoy it. ❤

Have a lovely weekends fair readers!