Bronwyn's Library Blog

Thursday, June 29, 2006

The future of books

From Rob Hyndman

"...will books continue to be a place where immersive thought and extended time are required, or are they morphing into another channel in the always-on, million-channel universe, full of clicks and links and chats and tunes and videos; full of flashing lights and tinkling bells, an easy rest-stop for those who prefer to skim lightly over the surface of the world’s ideas? And of course, who decides?"

Read on


Wednesday, June 28, 2006

RFID: making inroads into Australian libraries


RFID: making inroads into Australian libraries


Suzanne Gately, Manager, Libraries, Hobsons Bay
Libraries Implementation of RFID at Altona-Meadows Library and Learning Centre.

Eoin Geaney, Product Manager, Security Systems Division, 3M Australia Pty Ltd 3M
RFID in the public, special and academic library environments.

Alan Butters, Principal Consultant, Sybis
What do you do first? Where do you begin? When do you approach the market?

These talks will follow the (brief) business of the Annual General Meeting of the Association.

Not a VALA member? Visitors welcome at VALA meetings- just come!

Venue Tutorial Room, Ground Floor, Baillieu Library, University of Melbourne
(On-site parking available - have gold coins available for the parking fee.
Public transport via tram.)

Date Wednesday 28 June 2006 5.30 p.m.

Drinks and nibbles 6.00 p.m. Meeting

Alyson Kosina
Email: VALA Secretariat

Librarianship is moving away from rules and regulations to a more flexible response to the user. Marketing has taken hold of our outlook and we need to respond to that user and meet his/her needs rather than standing in place relying on outdated systems that once read like a gospel.

It's the message in two disparate blogs recently.

Meredith in the Information Wants to be free blog gave a wonderful post about the possibilities of libraries using Myplace and similar social networking tools.

Building Presence in MySpace and Facebook

A lot of libraries have started building presence in MySpace and Facebook by creating profiles. And I honestly think this is a really good idea though unfortunately most libraries are doing it really badly.

When you decide to put up a library profile on MySpace or Facebook, what is your goal?

If it’s to look cool or to make students more aware of the library, don’t bother.

A profile that offers nothing but a picture of the library, a blog post or two and a cutesy thing about how we won’t shush you just looks cheesy. I think there is a big difference between “being where our patrons are” and “being USEFUL to our patrons where they are.”

I think some of the libraries in MySpace and Facebook have put a profile up, but they have not tried to make it useful to their patrons at all. Just putting up a profile does not make the library seem cool, nor does it make the library more visible.

And there's the outstanding post from the free Ranging Librarian. You will want to read the whole post, but here are excerpts.

You are not a format. You are a service.

The OPAC is not the sun. The OPAC is at best a distant planet, every year moving farther from the orbit of its solar system.The user is the sun.The user is the magic element that transforms librarianship from a gatekeeping trade to a services profession.

The user is not broken.Your system is broken until proven otherwise.

Most of your most passionate users will never meet you face to face.

Most of your most alienated users will never meet you face to face.

It is easier for a camel to pass through the eye of a needle than to find a library website that is usable and friendly and provides services rather than talking about them in weird library jargon.

Information flows down the path of least resistance. If you block a tool the users want, users will go elsewhere to find it.

You cannot change the user, but you can transform the user experience to meet the user.

Meet people where they are--not where you want them to be.

The user is not "remote." You, the librarian, are remote, and it is your job to close that gap.

The average library decision about implementing new technologies takes longer than the average life cycle for new technologies.

If you are reading about it in Time and Newsweek and your library isn't adapted for it or offering it, you're behind.

If we continue fetishizing the format and ignoring the user, we will be tomorrow's cobblers.

Your ignorance will not protect you.

What a wake-up call!!


Tuesday, June 27, 2006

Managing E-Resources

ALIA ARCoM and Libraries Australia are pleased to announce a seminar on Managing E-Resources.

Date - 27th July 2006
Time - 10.00am - 1.00pm
Venue - State Library Lecture Theatre
Cost - $30, Concession $15.
Morning tea included

The program will include presentations from

* vendors about electronic resource publishing and electronic resource management tools

* South Australian libraries and Libraries Australia about currentpractice in managing e-resources.

The seminar is a general information session exploring the management of e-resources , and is aimed at anyone who deals with electronic resources. A program will be circulated when finalised.

In the meantime, for more information contact Tom Snook, ARCoM Convenor and Metadata and Acquisitions Services Librarian Flinders University

Ph: +61(8) 8201 2083Fax: +61(8) 8201 2508
Email: tom dot snook at flinders dot edu dot au

Web 2.0 and Library Boot Camp have been sung

A song for my friends in Library Boot Camp (in one take) Turn up those speakers!

Monday, June 26, 2006

Genealogy Roots Blog

(via the Librarian in Black)

The Genealogy Roots Blog is for finding online genealogy databases, records and resources.

The focus is on vital records (birth, marriage, divorce & death records), census records, naturalization records, military records and ship passenger lists.

The Genealogy Roots Blog is based in the USA, but online European, Canadian, and other records sources are sometimes included.

Mixed in with all this you will occasionally find a fun post or genealogy news.

Visit the Genealogy blog


Long Overdue: A Fresh Look at Public Attitudes About Libraries in the 21st Century

Via Resourceshelf

Source: Public Agenda

“In this survey of the public, we find Americans prize public library service and see libraries as potential solutions to many communities’ most pressing problems, from universal access to computers to the need for better options for keeping teens safe and productive.

But few Americans are aware of the increasingly tenuous financial picture faced by many libraries. Forty-five percent give an ‘A’ to their local community for maintaining well-run libraries, far ahead of any other community institutions, including schools, parks, and police.

Those who think public libraries are primarily used by folks who can’t afford bookstores are clearly mistaken — higher-income families are even more likely to use public libraries than low-income families.

Prepared with support from the Americans for Libraries Council and funding from the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation.”

Read the report

Sunday, June 25, 2006

SLA Annual Conference blogged

Via Resourceshelf

ITI blogcos SLA “coverage of the Special Libraries Association annual conference in Baltimore”

Read the posts


Tagging meets Subject Headings

From the Thing-ology Blog and Library thing

Tim has just announced a new LibraryThing feature - the addition of subjects. Now you can look at a book and see both the user-created tags as well as the librarian-assigned subject headings. This puts us in the middle of the age old debate: tags or subject headings? Folksonomies or taxonomies?

Ok, maybe the question isn’t quite that old, but it’s certainly debated. Subject analysis is a fuzzy discipline - decisions on "aboutness" are hard. But is it necessarily a question of one over the other? Can they work together at all?

Read on ...


Saturday, June 24, 2006

Reading - the great escape

Sara Nelson in her book So many books, so little time

"A friend of mine tells me that he likes to listen to tapes of Trollope novels while negotiating New York City traffic because he likes the clash of his inner and outer worlds: 'The lovely British voice on the tape is saying, "And the vicar went into the parish," just as I'm yelling in my best New Yorkese, "Hey Buddy, up yours!" to the cabdriver on my right.' Reading's ability to beam you up to a different world is a good part of the reason people like me do it in the first place -- because dollar for dollar, hour per hour, it's the most expedient way to get from our proscribed little 'here' to an imagined, intriguing 'there.' Part time machine, part Concorde, part ejector seat, books are our salvation."

books, reading, library

Friday, June 23, 2006

Fun Kids' Music Website

From Maureen McGee, Nantahala Regional Library, mmcgee at nantahalalibrary dot org

Recently I discovered a fantastic website for a rockin' radio showbthat's all music for kids.

The show is "Spare the Rock, Spoil the Child"from Valley Free Radio in Northampton, Mass.

The website is . You can download podcasts of the shows there, as well as read about new music, etc.

I like to listen atmy desk. Check it out - you may even get some ideas for collectiondevelopment. Enjoy!

children's music, library

Making “E” Visible

" ...Why are smart, well-educated, otherwise well-informed people so glaringly ignorant of what their libraries offer in the way of online research? And what are we doing about it?"

Read the whole article

National Simultaneous Storytime 2006

Friday 1 September 2006 at 11:00am AEST.

Good Night, MeWritten by Andrew Daddo, Illustrated by Emma Quay
Published by Hachette Children's Books ISBN: 0733621120

Things to look out for:

REGISTRATION AND ORDERING WILL BE AVAILABLE ON THE ALIA WEBSITE SHORTLY.......................Book and activity pack- a paperback copy of "Good night me"- a colour poster- blackline masters for a dream activity sheet and an orangutan craft - balloons and door hangers EXTRA balloons and door hangers will also be available separately.

An extra activity sheet on Emma Quay's website:

A promotional flyer that can be downloaded:

library, National simultaneous story time

Video: Katrina-hit libraries get big gift

Thursday, June 22, 2006

Are You Game?

By Aaron Schmidt -- 6/1/2006

Thanks to electronic games, attracting teens has never been easier
Current Issue "

Via Stephen Abram who comments: Loads of food for thought.
It's practical and is a good place to start thinking and debating about how your library might jump on this trend. It's not a fad. There's a reason why these games outsell book, magazines and newspapers. There's a reason why they comprise a big part of military training. They do belong in learning and community spaces.

You’ve heard the buzz about how hosting gaming events will have young patrons beating a path to your library.

Marianne Kruppa, a Web developer librarian at St. Joseph County (IN) Public Library (SJCPL) has seen it happen firsthand. “Game nights grow exponentially,” she says. “When one kid has a great time, she brings one or two friends to the next event. Then those kids bring their friends!”

Kruppa, one of SJCPL’s resident techies and a major Nintendo fan herself, helps organize game events at the library, an eight-branch institution that serves a suburban, middle-class community of 250,000 in South Bend. Launched as a single exhibition event in December 2005, SJCPL’s gaming program now boasts regular gatherings around popular video and computer games like Mario Kart DS, Double Dash, Metroid Prime, and Animal Crossing.

Back in December 2005, the debut drew a ragtag bunch of about a dozen observers, but since then, SJCPL’s game events have attracted more than 30 enthusiastic and extremely focused youngsters every couple of weeks.

You’re probably wondering how you can make this happen at your own institution. Like many librarians, you may be a little intimidated by the hardware. But only a few things are needed to stage a gaming event, and they don’t cost a king’s ransom. So let’s get the geeky stuff out of the way... Read on ...

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Libraries committed to equitable online access

The Australian Library and Information Association would like to work with the Federal Minister for Communications, Information Technology and the Arts and her Department on the implications for Australia's public libraries and their users of the Protecting Families Online program, announced today.

The Australian Library and Information Association supports the provision of free internet filters to Australian families and the increased support for community education on safe internet use included in the Protecting Families Online package.

The Association's Executive Director, Sue Hutley, said that the increased funding for NetAlert, the government's internet education and advisory body is welcomed as it will allow NetAlert to expand its community education activities.

Australia's public libraries play a significant role in addressing the need for equitable community access to online information. TheAssociation is concerned that requirements for the National Library ofAustralia and other State, Territory and Local Government libraries to provide filtering on public access terminals may restrict access for adult library users to legitimate online information, while not guaranteeing that children are protected from offensive or illegalcontent.

'While we agree with the government's move to provide parents withfree, accredited filters for their home computers to allow parents to set access limits based on their own family values and needs, it is difficult to see how public libraries could meet the widely varying information needs of all their users if they are required to use filters on all public access internet terminals' Ms Hutley said.

'Public libraries provide information access to all members of thecommunity, including children, and they take their duty of care veryseriously' she said.

A recent survey by the Australian Library and Information Association of public library internet services found that the majority of libraries have policies and guidelines for the use of the internet. Many libraries meet the special needs of children by providing separate internet terminals and websites for children and young adults that link to resources specially tailored for them.

Qualified professionals in libraries provide training and advice on internet use as an integralpart of library services.

For further information:

Auslib Conference 2007 Call for Papers

Following the success of its March 2006 library buildings conference, Auslib Conferences is planning its second Adelaide conference for 9-10 March 2007.

'Learning futures: public libraries for the newgenerations in Australia and New Zealand' will profile the achievements and potential of public libraries from both sides of the Tasman for babies, children and young adults 0-18.

A call for papers is being mailed to all public libraries, and is also available online.For further information, email the conference convener Dr Alan Bundy, alan.bundy at auslib dot,

Tuesday, June 20, 2006

Intereted in Communication?

Books and writing, reading, communication, speaking, conversation, meetings and much more at the Pivotal Communication Blog ...

Sunday, June 18, 2006

Australians Feature at French Book Festival

From AustLit

Australia was the featured country at the 2006 Comédie du Livre in Montpellier, France. The festival, which ran from 19-21 May, debated Australian Indigenous culture, Australian literature and the influence of Australian culture on the global stage. Guest writers included Robert Dessaix, Nikki Gemmell, Janette Turner Hospital, Michelle de Kretser and the French writer (now resident in Perth), Catherine Rey. The guest of honour was Thomas Keneally.In the lead up to the festival France's main daily newspaper, La Monde, sponsored a literary contest. Questions included 'Which film of Stephen Spielberg is drawn from a novel written by an Australian author?' and 'Which detective novel of Douglas Kennedy has a framework in Australia?' (The answers are: Schindler's List and The Dead Heart.)The festival is now in its 21st year and attracts up to 300 writers and audiences of 100,000. Australia's participation was supported by the Australia Council and the Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade. Australia will continue to build its international profile when it is the featured country at next year's Kolkata Book Fair.


Saturday, June 17, 2006

ABC to launch new book club programme

Via AustLit

ABC Television will soon launch the First Tuesday Book Club hosted by journalist and publisher Jennifer Byrne.

A panel of book lovers and book clubbers will join Byrne to 'consider titles from all genres including fiction, non-fiction, biography, thriller, romance and history.'

ABC Television's Head of Arts and Entertainment, Courtney Gibson, said, '[t]his will be a book-obsessed beast of a show where viewers can get involved by reading the book beforehand and participating in on-line discussion forums.'

Jennifer Byrne, who hosted the ABC's one-off special My Favourite Book in December 2004, says, '[f]or a book addict like myself, this is like rolling in clover ... Our book club will hunt out the best and liveliest of the new [and] the most memorable of the old.'

First Tuesday Book Club is currently in production and will be screened for the first time on 1 August 2006. It will continue to air, as its name suggests, on the first Tuesday of each month.

book clubs, library

Thursday, June 15, 2006

Pre Book Week Extravaganza

ALIA Children's and Youth Services (NSW) Group


...Pre Book Week Extravaganza 2006

Themed 'Book Now' this year's extravaganza is sure to be bigger and betterthan ever!

Find out what other libraries suggest for displays, competitions, readers'theatre, storytime and class visits.

Be inspired and take away lots ofgreat ideas.

Date: Thursday 22 June4:00pm - 8:00pm (for a 4:30pm start)

Light refreshments available on arrival

Fee: ALIA Members $15 (one per institutional membership), Non Members $18

RSVP: Judy Drayton

e-mail:Judy_Drayton at

library, ALIA, Children's Book Week

What is the ubiquitous librarian?

The Ubiquitous Librarian is everywhere!

The Ubiquitous Librarian constantly seeks new ways to interact with users.

The Ubiquitous Librarian is all about participation. It’s about stepping outside of the library and interacting with patrons wherever they may be: online, in the classroom, in the hallway, at football games, in the cafeteria, off campus.

Instead of trying to force them into the library, into our world, the ubiquitous librarian is embedded into their world.

It’s about not pushing the library agenda, but rather about participating in the larger community we serve.

Put simply: Instead of trying to make your library seem cool, be a librarian and do cool things.

Read more of the Ubiquitous Librarian


Wednesday, June 14, 2006

Beyond the library walls- estabishing an information literacy program for a dispersed user group

By Paul Verlander

The Information Services of the Health and Safety Executive (HSE), the UK government agency responsible for health and safety at work, has always endeavoured to educate its users.

The HSE employs some 4,100 staff dispersed across a network of 32 offices from a broad range of scientific and technical disciplines, as well as inspectors, policy makers and administrators. With such a large and diverse usergroup it is little surprise that most efforts at user education have been demand-led.

Staff of the service regularly provided support to users on sourcing appropriate information and using our online resources. Similarly, library induction sessions have always been available for staff.

However, such an approach tended only to cater for active users of the service and, given that efforts were based largely within the library, catered only for those staff based within our main headquarters. Read on ...


Tuesday, June 13, 2006

School Library 2.0

(School Library Journal Via Thomson Dialog NewsEdge)

A group of students from Lakeview High School in Battle Creek, MI, is sitting down to a discussion of Elie Wiesels Night (Hill & Wang, 1960). Its a fairly typical exercise the Nobel Laureates haunting memoir of the Holocaust has been widely read in high schools (long before being tapped for Oprahs book club earlier this year).

Not so typical is the discussion itself. It will take place entirely online, in the form of a blog. Read on …

educational blogs, education, education and technology, library

Sunday, June 11, 2006

Presentations from the 2006 Information Highways Conference Now Online


Saturday, June 10, 2006

U.S. Book Production Plummets 18K in 2005

U.S. Book Production Plummets 18K in 2005; Smaller Publishers Show the Largest Drop in New Titles

UK Now Leader in English Language Publishing

Bowker, the world’s leading provider of bibliographic information, today released statistics on U.S. book publishing compiled from its Books In Print® database. Based on preliminary figures from U.S. publishers, Bowker is projecting that U.S. title output in 2005 decreased by more than 18,000 to 172,000 new titles and editions.

This is the first decline in U.S. title output since 1999, and only the 10th downturn recorded in the last 50 years. It follows the record increase of more than 19,000 new books in 2004. Great Britain, long the world’s per capita leader in the publication of new books in any language, now replaces the United States as the publisher of most new books in English. 206,000 new books were published in the U.K. in 2005, representing an increase of some 45,000 (28%) over 2004. Read on ...

books, publishing, library

Thursday, June 08, 2006

NCLIS Announces Grand Prize Winner

South Carolina Program Reduces Health Disparities

By Improving Access to High-Quality Information about Diabetes

What are the best library programs in the country addressing health and wellness issues?

From 50 state winners, a grand prize winner has been chosen by a Federal panel, receiving $20,000 for its innovative work to reduce the risk of diabetes.

An all-day forum featuring the ten finalist libraries took place at the National Library of Medicine on May 3rd. The grand prize winner was announced at a reception that evening. NLM is pleased to have provided some support to six of the finalist winners through the National Network of Libraries of Medicine.

And the winner is:The "REACH 2010" Charleston and Georgetown (South Carolina) Diabetes Coalition's Library Partnership.

Read on ...


Wednesday, June 07, 2006

Mass Digitization:Implications for Information Policy

Report from"Scholarship and Libraries in Transition:A Dialogue about the Impacts of Mass Digitization Projects

"Symposium held on March 10-11, 2006University of Michigan, Ann Arbor MIU.S.

National Commission on Libraries and Information Science (NCLIS)May 9, 2006

The project announced in December 2004 for a partnership between Google, Inc. and five major research libraries (the "G5") to digitize over 10 million unique titles launched a new era of large-scale digitization heretofore not imagined feasible or affordable.

In the year or so since that announcement, many stakeholders have raised issues about the legal, social, economic, and other impacts of this and similar projects that will inevitably follow Google’s lead.

The project and the reactions to it inspired the idea of a public forum at the University of Michigan to allow scholars, librarians, publishers, government leaders, and others an opportunity to come together and discuss their concerns and issues.

The symposium was held March 10-11, 2006.

The Webcast of the entire symposium may be found on the symposium Web page:


Tuesday, June 06, 2006

Growing your Organisation

If you are interested in ways to grow your organisation - leadership, public relations, communication and organisational management, visit the Pivotal Organisation Management Web Pages.

Tags:, ,

Monday, June 05, 2006

LibX - the firefox extension for libraries

"LibX is a Firefox extension that provides direct access to your library's resources.

LibX is open source.

LibX is a framework from which editions for specific libraries can easily be created.


Sunday, June 04, 2006

To mentor or to monitior _ Copyright

About the Presentation:

This presentation will review legislative and judicial (limited) developments in the area of copyright law as well as industry initiatives that are shaping the role of information intermediaries such as libraries and schools from one of "mentor" to one of "monitor."

Recent legislation such as the DMCA (Digital Millennium Copyright Act) and TEACH (Technology, Education and Copyright Harmonization) Act at the forefront of this change is analyzed (facial content analysis), including the respective documentary (legislative) history.

The presentation highlights the increased burden placed upon the intermediary library or educational entity and should be of interest to those individuals concerned with the increasing legal leverage of the copyright owner, as well as those institutional stakeholders that face responsibility for compliance with the new requirements.

Presentation slides (powerpoint)

Thanks to the Librarian in Black and Mary Minow's Library Law Blog

library, copyright

Saturday, June 03, 2006

Connecting the digital dots: Literacy for the twenty-first century

"Literacy today depends on understanding the multiple media that make up our high-tech reality and developing the skills to use them effectivelyBy Barbara R. Jones-Kavalier and Suzanne L. FlanniganPrior to the 21st century, literate defined a person’s ability to read and write, separating the educated from the uneducated. With the advent of a new millennium and the rapidity with which technology has changed society, the concept of literacy has assumed new meanings."

Read on …


Friday, June 02, 2006

Common errors in English

The aim of this site is to help you avoid low grades, lost employment opportunities, lost business, and titters of amusement at the way you write or speak. Check it out …





Thursday, June 01, 2006

Wellington city Libraries and Web 2.0

From the Valis blog ... by Simon Chamberlain

Wellington City Libraries already had an RSS feed from their front page, now they have a dedicated blog.

library, Library 2.0