Archive for August, 2009

Openness and Creativity (aka Librarians Like More Stuff)

Friday, August 28th, 2009

I was preparing a Pechua Kucha presentation for our library recently as part of a fun event before the start of a new semester that also was intended to remind us of why we do what we do. I ended up doing mine on the idea of openness, tieing it to Ranganathan’s Five Laws of Library Science and ALA’s statement of Core Values of Librarianship. I ended up talking about Open Source, Open Access, Open Data, and Open Educational Resources.  But the consistent theme that kept coming through – and I hadn’t set out with this in mind – was how openness in all these senses is the foundation for increased productivity and increased creativity. Librarians like openness because we like to have more stuff. More stuff for our communities to take and build on it to create even more stuff.

This idea is probably obvious to those who believe in the value of intellectual freedom, but it’s nice to have a reminder.

– Dan Lee

Google and Blogger Privacy

Monday, August 24th, 2009

Rosemary Port, the 29-year-old author of the blog “Skanks in NYC” is retaliating for a recent decision that ruled her site defamatory against model Liksula Cohen by suing Google, claiming that the company “breached its fiduciary duty to protect her expectation of anonymity” when they revealed her name to the requesting judge.

More here, here, and here.

— xima

Yale University Press “Does Not Negotiate with Terrorists”

Thursday, August 13th, 2009

What the press is doing, however, is anticipating protests against books and recommending content adjustment based on those anticipations.

Intellectual Freedom in the News

Wednesday, August 12th, 2009

The Oak Park, Illinois, public library has opened a transgender resource collection.

The ACLU has settled out of court with two Tennessee school districts that banned access to GLBT sites, but allowed access to “reparative therapy” sites.

A Federal Court has found that RealDVD, a software company that provides a means of copying DVDs and maintaining digital copies on the user’s hard drives, violates the DMCA.

The US Marines have banned social networking on the Marine Core Network.

ACRL & ARL have sent a letter to the Department of Justice’s Antitrust Division stating that the lack of competition for the Google Books project “could compromise fundamental library values such as equity of access to information, patron privacy, and intellectual freedom.”

You can see FCC Chaiman Julius Genachowski’s remarks on braoadband at the eGovernment and Civic Engagement Workshop here.

The Freedom to Read Foundation is urging the Supreme Court to reject a 1999 ban that would make it a crime to create, sell or possess any photograph, film, video or sound recording in which an animal is harmed or killed — even though these materials are First Amendment protected.

An Oregon rule that could go into effect as soon as September would require all milk producers that advertise their milk as hormone-free must also include a disclaimer next to the label that the U.S. Food and Drug Administration has found no significant difference between milk coming from cows treated with the hormone and those that are not. Two industry giants have filed lawsuits.

“Expert reviewers” appointed by the Texas state Board of Education have recommended the removal of César Chávez and former Supreme Court Justice Thurgood Marshall from the state’s Social Studies curriculum on the grounds that Chávez is an “unfitting role model for students” and Marshall is “not an appropriate historical figure.”
— compiled by X. Avalos