On my library school listserv I recently encountered an email that said that this article would be of interest: Librarians under new management – Yahoo! News.

Scary article… It basically talks about how, all over the country, many communities are choosing to outsource their libraries to a private, for-profit firm, as they can no longer afford to run the libraries. The private firms make changes such as staff reduction and open-hours reduction. So far, the local governments reserve the right to charge fines and decide other borrowing policies, but the books are chosen by the private firm. Let that sink in. Over time, how will that change how library collections develop? Will there be built-in, hidden-from-the-public censorship? How much do you want to bet?

I have been rereading a few of Madeleine L’Engle’s books, as mentioned in my previous post, as a way of honoring the memory of a much-loved children’s writer who died recently. (Although she wrote adult books as well, I really know her best as a children’s author. In fact she famously said: “You have to write the book that wants to be written. And if the book will be too difficult for grown-ups, then you write it for children. “) Read the rest of this entry »

Today I announced that on my coffee break I would be heading to the library across the street to return a couple of books, and possibly even browse a bit… (Hey, I had to remain true to my moniker, despite pressing homework for grad school!)

My co-worker, who is  a 1.5 generation Russian immigrant, and hasn’t visited a library in at least a decade, but loves books, perked up and asked if she could tag along. Read the rest of this entry »

More and more, I have heard through librarian friends and library school professors, librarians are being cast in the role of not just information specialists and educators, but also social workers. Libraries are often one of the few refuges for the homeless population. Some librarians see serving the homeless as part of their overall mission to serve the public. Others assert that libraries are not social service institutions meant to serve the homeless in any way further than in the way that they innately serve the general population and that local and state governments ought to pour more funding into shelters that are equipped precisely for this purpose, as they feel libraries are stretched to the max. Still others state that whether  Read the rest of this entry »

December 2019
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