Public domain photograph by: US Navy, National Science Foundation. Link.
I’m back at home after meeting with a lot of terrific librarians in four different states. March is the busy month and after last month my plan is “not getting in a plane more than once a month for work.” I’ll be speaking with my good friend Michael Stephens at the Indiana Library Federation District Six conference next week. I’ll do a wrap-up of the talks I’ve been giving sometime later but news for me is mostly having more free time to actually attend things and not just speak at them. Getting to go to programs at the Tennessee Library Association conference and the National Library of Medicine’s New England Region one-day conference about social justice has really helped me connect with what other people are doing in some of the same areas I’m interested in. It’s sort of important to not just be a lone voice in the wilderness about some of this stuff, so in addition to the SXSW stuff (and talking to a great bunch of library school students in Columbia Missouri) getting to attend library events as an audience member has been a highlight of the past few weeks.
However I’ve been backed up on “stuff I read that I think other people might like to read.” Try as I may Twitter is still for hot potato stuff [i.e. Google's April Fools Joke specifically, I felt, for librarians] and not for things that I think merit more thoughtful or wordy presentation. So, as I enter the first Thursday in over a month where I get to hang out at home all day, I’m catching up, not on reading because there is tons of time for reading while traveling, but on passing some links around. So, here are some things you might like to read, from the past few months, newest first.
- For Archivists, ‘Occupy’ Movement Presents New Challenges – becoming part of history includes keeping track of history. Howard Besser and others have been working to make sure that activism is archived. See his group’s website at Activist Archivists.
- Are Privatized Public Libraries So Bad? – an interesting look at the good and bad parts of privatized libraries. Not particularly compelling to me, but worth understanding the viewpoints of people who argue that this is where the world of libraries is going.
- Three cheers for the digital divide? Ann Treacy responds to a controversial Thomas Friedman post which said that we should spend less time trying to close the digital divide and more time getting super-fast bandwidth to “the top 5 percent, in university towns, who will invent the future” Treacy’s response is very thorough and very worth reading.
- Five things we can do in the US to support the public domain – as cultural stewards, we should be working more on keeping cultural content in the public domain.
- How Big Telecom Used Smartphones to Create a New Digital Divide – we hear a lot about how the increase in mobile broadband usage particularly among various minority populations is going to close the digital divide. This article examines how that’s not the case at all.