Posts categorized "Advocacy" Feed

We've started partnering - International Librarians Network



screen shot: ILN

"The International Librarians Network (ILN) is a facilitated program aimed at helping librarians develop international networks. (They) believe that innovation and inspiration can cross borders, and that spreading our networks beyond our home countries can make us better at what we do.


ILN is run by volunteers all around the world. Program Coordinators match participants, support the partnerships, and manage the website."

Give it a never know who you may meet while giving back to your international library community!

Coalition Slams Net Neutrality Rules

Report from today by Chloe Albenesius

Net Neutrality (photo - PCmag)

A coalition of top Internet firms - from Google and Amazon to Facebook and Twitter - penned a letter to the FCC this week to express concern with the commission's proposed net neutrality rules.

See the entire article here. It's not too late...yet. Make your voices heard.

Net Neutrality - The Movie

Net Neutrality graphic-1Net Neutrality really is AT RISK. Tell your friends. Tell your neighbours. Tell your Librarian. Tell your local Pizza Shop.

The following is a direct quote from

We have until May 15 to make enough noise to stop the corporate takeover of the Internet. Watch on to see what’s at stake–and invite your friends.

The length of a sitcom episode, The Internet Must Go is funny, engaging, and full of truth. It stars Al Franken, The Daily Show‘s John Hodgman, and former Executive Director Eli Pariser, and it just won a Webby Award—the Internet’s version of the Oscars—in Online Film & Video for Public Service & Activism.


(Full disclosure: This award-winning video was made by a friend of MoveOn—Gena Konstantinakos, who in addition to being a terrific filmmaker is married to Eli Pariser.)

ALA Banned Books Virtual Read-Out on You Tube

2013 Banned Book Week"Join... celebrities, libraries and bookstores across the country in the Banned Books Virtual Read-Out!

For the third year in a row, readers from across the country and around the world will be able to participate virtually during Banned Books Week, Sept. 22 – 28, 2013.

Participants may proclaim the importance of the freedom to read by posting videos that will be featured on a dedicated Banned Books Week Virtual Read-Out YouTube channel."

how we think about what our taxes pay for / a Canadian in America

Manhattan-20120315-00426Since arriving here in these 'United' States of America nearly thirteen years ago, we have been astounded and frankly, gobsmacked by seemingly well educated people who tell us that Canada is a socialist country because we all support health care (with taxes) Now please note well that at the same time,  these same folk don't seem to understand that services  called: Police, Fire and Library are paid with...wait for it ... taxes! 

We have since become inured to this particular American brainfreeze issue; we can't educate a whole country.  We just do our thing and try to spread the news that libraries are good for democracy.  And we explain what taxes do with examples like this one: that when Katrina destroyed a whole portion of a state that was uninsured because the insurance companies (calculatedly and intelligently) stopped insuring properties Medieval Private engravingin such a high risk area, it was the U.S. Government (i.e. taxes) that paid for FEMA payments and restoration and grants to states.

ER-LouisXVILibraryVersAll this to say...once, there was no way to pool our efforts and when the problems became too large in scale or too far away, we accepted and used taxes  to help ourselves in ways that today we take for granted.TianYige1 oldest private libary in China

I'm talking libraries here of course, but the same applies to myriad social and infrastructure supports that help get us through our sunfilled, free days or our darkest hours.

This article touches on this issue and reminds us of the history we may have forgotten about our most cherished civic institutions. 

Give it a scan:

How Private Services Became Public - Things we take for granted today -- public police, roads and libraries -- were only achieved through long, hard political battles that lasted decades and sometimes centuriesby BY: | October 2012

here's an exerpt of the central thesis ...

"...Things we utterly take for granted today -- things that the left, right and center agree on -- were only achieved through long hard political battles, always lasting decades, sometimes for more than a century. I’m talking about really basic stuff, like public water and sewers, policing, public education, public roads and public libraries, to mention just a few."

attribution, link to

Library as Third Place - I Geek Global Literacy!

Just checking in on the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation  Gates Fndtn Logowork with US Libraries.

Here's the latest link form the foundation web site about their work to foster the community library as a safe Third Place in our lives.

Gates Fndtn libary work



and don't forget the GEEK Your Library program sponsored by OCLC and the Gates Foundation.

GeektheLibrary-PosterTemplate_Colin Palmer_running_2821








Americans lose their way. LIbrary funded by foreign interests.

People actually think that this is a happy story.

Spear Library, Shutesbury MAIt is a common story.  In the long run, it is not a positive tale and unfortunately for the children of this country it is one that is played out with regularity.

Here's the story line; tiny, miserably funded, inadequately supported and ill provisioned local library goes for a funding vote.  Short sighted community (I use the term loosely) votes down a budget to bring the library up to a standard that allows it's staff to do their jobs.

Here's the twist.  Pathos in the wings...library supporters do a video, put it on the web...presto! DONATIONS ROLE IN....FROM PEOPLE IN OTHER COUNTRIES.

We in the U.S. have turned upside down and inside out our priorities, our sense of responsibility to our society and even lost the ability to discern a pathetic situation when we see it with our own eyes.

This is not a happy story.  It is a pathetic story.  Even though the state was ready to fund 60% of this project, less than half of the citizens who did vote knew what a library is for and what a really good one can  do for a small community.

I am not made jubilant by this report.  I am profoundly saddened by it.  It is not the first one I have heard and it won't be the last.  America you are in danger of total and irreversible collapse.  You have lost your ability to stand up and support your own democracy - at your peril.


Story about the M.N. Spear Memorial Library, Shutesbury, MA.  reported by: Zak Stone in

it's unnanimous...get out into your community NOW


We watch and cringe as some libraries loose ground with their communities.  Funding votes are lost and users are crammed into out of date, overcrowded little libraries.

Overworked and discouraged librarians are missing the chance to get out into their communities to build up their position and BE SEEN as an 'outstanding contributor' and 'valuable asset' in their community.

 This topic is universal within the library community and becoming larger and more urgent as each day passes and technology plows on, with our without libraries.  Here are two related articles from Library Journal.


Users Don’t Know What Libraries Are Talking About, Studies Find 



 That Sound You Hear? It’s The Library World Changing


Oscar Nominated...Animated Short...based on the BOOK....

ALA and every associated organisation should adopt the rights to this Oscar nominated animated short and have it up on their website.  It is that good.

Mr. Morris Lessmore

This website will only be open for a limited time.  If you ever wanted to show people how important are words and the spirit of the book - this is the way to do it.  The Fantastic Flying Books of Mr. Morris Lessmore.


couldn't have said it better ourselves


Eleanor Crumblehulme_LibrariesRecessionPlague_publish

In fact we have at least one thing in common with the Canadian librarian who coined this phrase.  We too are nearly driven wild when we see library funding cut and communities who will not support the library. 


The catch phrase that we use and one that we like to think hits legislators and the public with a certain effectiveness is: 

Libraries will get you through

Times of No Money

better than

No Money will get you through

Times with No Libraries

You are free to quote to anyone within hearing distance!

Special thank you to:

Marilyn McIntosh, the Executive Director at Monroe Free Library in Monroe, New York and her intrepid, stalwart and intelligent staff.


Eleanor Crumblehulme.

ProQuest offers free .pdf promotional materials for your Library

ProQuest has just published a Public Library Toolkit.

There are easy to edit .pdf files for your library to use.  You will also find sample Tweets!

You can "access...complimentary bookmarks, customizable posters and fliers, digital commercials, and other tools designed to help you promote your public library’s on-line resources" here on the ProQuest site

Here are some examples of posters and book marks designed to get your library users' attention and promote your library...

   ProQuest PDF BookMark1  Happy editing.

ProQuest PDF Poster 2

Library Systems roles and value explained

Library Systems are poster children! 

Librarians have always known how to work together collectively to deliver high quality service to the maximum number of people for the least amount of money.  Library Systems help librarians achieve those lofty goals every day, 24/7.

Library Systems in New York, and in other states and provinces are the support system to librarians and library users.  People who work for a Library System often do so in the background to provide all manner of services from inter library loans; cataloging and automated on line catalogs; trustee training and help with grant applications and processing funds from state aid.  Library systems help our librarians provide the services to a public who expects excellence 24 hours a day, 7 days a week, on line and in the library.

Title page Albany Hearings still


This  video   was taken 29 November 2011 in Albany, NY. Play time is 25m 45sec.

It is an excerpt from a Public Hearing: Funding Public Libraries in New York State under the New York State Assembly Standing Committee on Libraries & Education Technology, Chair, Assemblyman, Bob Reilly. 

The speakers are, in order of appearance: Robert Hubsher, Executive Director of the Ramapo Catskill Library System (RCLS), Middletown, NY RCLS Facts  ;  Marilyn McIntosh, Director/Librarian, Monroe Free Library, Monroe, NY MONROE  and James Mahoney, Director/Librarian, Nyack Library, Nyack, NY The Nyack Library| Welcome .


Shareable: How Libraries Are Doing More With Less

PIC_1357 crop centerI just saw this on Twitter - good article.

Nothing we don't already know but important to share with those who don't appreciate the depth of commitment shown every day by librarians and their boards.

An overview of libraries reveals that some library systems are hanging on to a thread for their survival while others are thriving. The overall trend, however, is one of increased usage and circulation of materials, both electronic and traditional, coupled with decreased funding.

 Neil Gaiman - chair Nat lib wk 2011 video in link below...

from:  Shareable: How Libraries Are Doing More With Less.

Geek Posters - Wallkill Public Library, New York

I have had the pleasure of producing the 'Geek Your Library' posters for the Wallkill Public Library.  Wallkill Public Library Home Page    It's been a blast, maily because the Chief Librarian, Lou Carolan is herself a 'Force for Librarianship'!

Here are the posters:


I love doing volunteer effort for my community, except everywhere is my community!

Library talk live and on Skype - world wide interest grows with new librarians

                                 Just in case you think the future of libraries is a dead topic...think again and follow these links! LibraianInBlack TwitterImage

I found Michiel Laan today on Twitter, this energetic and passionate young librarian is interviewed on This Week In Libraries (link below).  I discovered TWIL through a discussion on LinkedIn.

Here is Ms.Laan's conversation with Erik on TWIL:LibrarianInBlack

And so the spiral of world wide discussions about libraries and their futures continues!  gives us hope and stimulates the brain. Watch this lovely interview: cycling unconference out of IFLA

We are particularly interested in the space planning and architectural programming aspect of how the physicall environment provided in new libraries and renovations meet the needs of communities that want their service needs met with spaces that serve as a community Commons.

New York Court Declares That Libraries Are Educational Institutions

Good news.  Library Journal home dt.common.streams.StreamServer

New York Court Declares That Libraries Are Educational Institutions.

"The judge said it perfectly: libraries are an inherent public good," said Kevin Verbesey director of the Suffolk Cooperative Library System.

"This decision recognizes that libraries are not cultural amenities. They are educational institutions and are an essential public service," said Michael Borges, the executive director of the New York Library Association (NYLA).

Libraries - resources to get us through these tough times

It's no secret.  Demand for library services has risen steadily these past two years as people struggle to stay afloat through this ' economic downturn ' - a polite way to reference this International RecessionSlow Economy Fuels Surge in Library Use

Perversely, the local, state, provincial and federal governments have continued to decresase funding to libraries and systems steadily and mercilessly

Libraries face rising costs:

  • increasing wages and benefitsincreasing demand for print and AV materials
  • increasing demand for digital resources
  • the high cost of telecommunications and need for higher bandwidth
  • the high cost of maintaining computer systems
  • population growth and diversity
  • demands for increased hours and services

People and Libraries are fighting for their lives.  Advocating in aTough Economy - TOOLKIT.

People are beginning to notice how important the library is in their communities.  (...) the Library,a cozy place to look for a job

We particularly like this little sound bite - you can use it to your hearts content - it usually makes people think for a second.

Libraries will get us through times of no money better than money will get us through times of no libraries!