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Library

ALA goes 3D in program for Midwinter Meeting
January 23, 2015 | 10:25 am

ALA Chicago 2015 The American Library Association has listed 3D printing among the agenda topics at the 2015 ALA Midwinter Meeting, to be held at the McCormick Convention Center in the ALA home base of Chicago, on January 3oth-February 3rd. Other topics include ebook policy, library funding options, national library public policy, and the  implica­tions of the November mid-term Congressional elections for American libraries. The 3D printing session of the Midwinter meeting, “Library 3D Printing—Unlocking the Opportunities, Understanding the Challenges," will cover the technological developments in 3D printing which "are empowering people to learn new skills, launch business ventures and solve complex health problems," and deal with the question:...

Where publishers ought to be behind libraries
January 20, 2015 | 12:25 pm

bookshelves-at-the-libraryAs a recent, rather vexed, letter to the UK Guardian points out, publishers and booksellers facing an apparent decline in appetite for the printed word ought also to be looking to their libraries - and supporting them more. Because it's a no-brainer to conclude that the more libraries are buying books, the more robust and healthy the book trade will be. In the context of a recent article in The Bookseller on apparent declining sales for adult print fiction in the UK, the letter writer, a Ralph Gee of Nottingham, asks: Has the editor of The Bookseller compared the fall of print sales...

Toronto Public Library Buying Used Books?
January 19, 2015 | 1:25 pm

Toronto Public LibraryA controversial story hit my newsfeed this weekend: it seems the Toronto Public Library has launched a new program aimed at reducing wait times for popular best-sellers: they are plumping up the catalogue by buying used copies from library patrons. As the Toronto Star explains: The books it has listed on its “Sell Books to the Library” website page are not books that the public does not want; their authors are not ones who, the great lie of media and festivals, stand to benefit from extra publicity. No, the list is comprised of books so popular that the library is having a...

Lincolnshire County Council goes outlaw in bid to eradicate Lincolnshire public libraries
January 19, 2015 | 12:25 pm

Lincolshire County Council appears to be acting in clear contravention of UK law in persisting with its plan to close many of the county's libraries. At least if the statement on the Save Lincolnshire Libraries website is anything to go by. Entitled "Astonishing Misuse of Public Money and Political Power," it reads: Lincolnshire County Council has published plans to implement its unlawful decision of December 2013 to close thirty libraries unless volunteers take them over. This not only ignores the High Court judgement of July 2014 that quashed this decision but also the Localism Act which gives charities and social enterprises...

Some more great photogenic libraries
January 6, 2015 | 6:25 pm

Business Insider, of all the surprising venues, has compiled and shared a rundown of 18 of the most splendid and photogenic libraries worldwide, with architectural details of what makes each one unique. Venues range from the George Peabody Library (above) in Baltimore, Maryland, to the Kanazawa Umimirai Library (below) in Kanazawa City in Japan, with libraries from all countries and time periods - though all of them architectural treasures (but perhaps not to everybody's taste). For traditionalists who prefer the classic library, there's always the likes of the Royal Portuguese Reading Room (below) in Rio de Janeiro, which once again shows...

Franck Bohbot captures the world’s grandest libraries
January 5, 2015 | 4:25 pm

Bohbot 1 French photographer Franck Bohbot has created a marvelous series of photographs of the great libraries of Europe - although Harvard Public Library does feature as well - as part of an ongoing project called House of Books which will eventually expand to embrace South America, Asia and North America. "This is about the places that we have learned and where the books stay for decades," states the photographer. "Paying tribute to the Architects. the light, the composition and the colors have to be coherent in all the series." Bohbot admits that he's hardly the first photographer ever to have chosen libraries as a...

Want read-aloud in Kindles and other readers? Use FCC’s easy online form by Jan. 9
January 3, 2015 | 2:52 pm

Amazon CEO Jeff BezosUpdate: See the most recent version of the LibraryCity post with mention of an unofficial Jan. 9 deadline and a link to the FCC's easy comment form. You need to submit formally. Please e-mail the FCC ASAP. The agency deals with accessibility matters and will soon make an important accessibility decision affecting Kindles along with other e-readers. Don’t delay! For years, I’ve been publicly begging Amazon to stop muting its E Ink machines and restore text to speech in the future. I may even have been the first commentator to break the news about the Paperwhite’s lack of TTS. This isn’t mere rhetoric. I sold my...

Campaign to save Newport Arthur Machen archive gathers momentum
December 30, 2014 | 2:25 pm

The threat to an unique archive of papers from Arthur Machen, the great Welsh writer of weird fiction, posed by cuts at Newport City Council appears to have released a growing wave of protest, progressing from local news reports to a BBC News item about the issue. The Friends of Arthur Machen, founded to commemorate and study the writer but now the focus of the campaign to protect the Machen archive held in Newport Art Gallery and Library, now numbers Alan Moore among its supporters, and is chaired by Ray Russell, founder of the independent British publisher Tartarus Press. The Machen papers are at...

Russia plans to launch national digital library in 2015
December 30, 2014 | 10:25 am

ebook-library-software2Soon Russians will be able to get digital books from their libraries. A new initiative has been set forth in Russia to transform local libraries into informational and cultural hubs, Minister of Culture Vladimir Medinsky recently said at a meeting, according to The Calvert Journal, an outlet on Russian culture. “Next year we will launch a national electronic library, set to be the largest collection of online texts, books, magazines and so on [in Russia],” Minister of Culture Vladimir Medinsky told regional governors, according to the article. “We will send you an approved model of a library, the implementation of which will...

Ten library systems pass one million digital checkouts in OverDrive in 2014
December 29, 2014 | 10:25 am

OverDrive logo The library is still the place to be – at least digitally. A few days ago, OverDrive announced that 10 public libraries surpassed one million digital checkouts for 2014. Six did it in 2013. Checkouts include ebooks, audiobooks, music and video streaming, and periodicals from OverDrive’s collection. Two libraries hit the two million mark. The percentage in parenthesis shows the growth from the previous year. 2 Million or more digital checkouts • Toronto Public Library (ON): (49% growth over 2013) • King County Library System (WA): (33%) 1 million+ • New York Public Library (NY): (42%) • Seattle Public Library (WA): (35%) • Hennepin County Library (MN): (33%) • Los...

Overpaid $266.5K city manager vs. library books
December 26, 2014 | 6:25 pm

Rashad Young: One of many overpaid city officials in the U.S.Wonder why your local public library is underfunded? Overpay of top city officials could be one reason. Here’s an example from my hometown, Alexandria, VA. The city manager’s $266,508 salary and additional benefits are almost as much as the entire substandard budget for library materials. – D.R Rashad Young, hired at $245K and now paid $266,508 a year, is leaving as Alexandria’s city manager to become city administrator for D.C. In my hometown of 150,000, Mr. Young has been pulling down a bigger salary than that of Vice President Joe Biden, paid $230,700. Across the Potomac, he’ll make $295K in his...

UK government responds to Sieghart library report, meets skepticism
December 23, 2014 | 6:25 pm

public lending rightFollowing the release of the Sieghart report on the UK library system, in full the "Independent Library Report for England," the current UK government has announced its official response. As reported in The Bookseller, Ed Vaizey, Minister for Culture, Communications and Creative Industries, has welcomed the report and agreed to the implementation of the libraries task force recommended in William Sieghart's review. Despite a few optimistic headlines here and there, such as Michael Kozlowski's claim over on Good E-Reader that "UK Libraries to Undergo a Renaissance in 2015," Vaizey's comments have been greeted with profound skepticism in many quarters. Despite his statement that "I...