Monday, June 18, 2012

The massive budget cuts of the last five years have forced school, academic, and public libraries to learn to function with fewer and fewer MLS holders, and library users don’t seem to notice the difference. Can they tell that there are fewer new books to choose from? Absolutely. Do they realize that there are longer and longer waits for popular ebooks? Absolutely. Do they notice when main library hours are slashed and branches are closed? Absolutely. Do they know when a professional librarian has been replaced with a paraprofessional or even a clerical person? Rarely, if ever. To the average American, a librarian is a person who works in a library.

Don’t be shocked that school boards, university administrators, city councils, city managers, library boards, and even library directors are taking close notice of this lack of perception. Yes, people still want libraries. That’s not the issue at all. No, I take that back. That is precisely the issue. People want libraries so desperately that they are quite willing to sacrifice the cost of professional staff to get full hours and robust book budgets restored.

So when a professional librarian resigns or retires, what should a library director do? The temptation is great to downgrade the professional position and put the resultant savings into books and hours. If the last five years have taught us anything, it’s that difficult choices have to be made. Administrators and trustees are under the gun to deliver the goods, and that basically means three things: computers, books, and hours.

My only surprise is that the library profession is slow to admit this reality and even slower to brainstorm new ways to train people to work in libraries.

Will Manley, “The Matter of the Master’s”, American Libraries, May/June 2012.

While the Forbes article is correct that recent MLS/MLIS graduates face a low growth and pay rank, it doesn’t really dissect why. Will Manley tackles this in his latest commentary on Will’s World.

Tuesday, April 10, 2012 Thursday, November 3, 2011
Yes, librarians are required to have master’s degrees.

Yes, librarians are required to have master’s degrees.

Tuesday, October 11, 2011
A day of nonstop awe and inspiration. Whenever any great song or album gets lost in the ether, someone is deprived of the joy of hearing it, and the great effort of those who created and recorded the work is damaged. Thankfully, the fanatics are there to make sure the jam session never stops.

Henry Rollins, The Column! Henry Speaks On His Consciousness-Expanding Trip to the Library of Congress With Ian MacKaye

This isn’t going to be what I do, but it’s still one of the many reasons what I’m getting into is important.

(via yellowdecorations)

I really love Henry Rollins.

Tuesday, September 6, 2011
Most significantly, integrating these materials into school curricula and into students’ leisure reading habits can promote a sense of belonging among immigrant and minority youth, facilitate student learning, foster acceptance of individual differences, and increase student knowledge about the world.

Denise E. Agosto, “Building A Multicultural School Library: Issues and Challenges”.

I feel as though this is a very “no shit” statement. (via morerobots)

Friday, August 12, 2011 Monday, April 25, 2011
Check out these librarian pasties from Craftster. The original poster states that they are made entirely from second hand materials — “The text is from a 1950s encyclopedia entry about libraries, and the  tiny sewn books are made with scrap paper, little squares from an old  Readers Digest book cover, and embroidery floss.”

Check out these librarian pasties from Craftster. The original poster states that they are made entirely from second hand materials — “The text is from a 1950s encyclopedia entry about libraries, and the tiny sewn books are made with scrap paper, little squares from an old Readers Digest book cover, and embroidery floss.”