A Publication of the Public Library Association Public Libraries Online
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Weeding — Love It or Hate It

Whether a library employee has taken a collection development class or not, most people working in a library have either heard of the CREW method of weeding materials or use the acronym MUSTIE when removing items from the collection. However, judging by the number of pictures posted to Facebook (of outlandish items still found on library shelves), it seems that not as much weeding is being done in libraries as should be. The question is, why are some of these items still on shelves and does a lack of weeding mean something more than it appears on the surface?

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Wisconsin Adds Additional Libraries to Memory Cafe Program

The Oconomowoc (Wisconsin) Public Library will become part of a growing initiative to support people who have been affected by Alzheimer’s, dementia, or other mild cognitive impairments.

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Share, Write, Publish

It is both a blessing and a curse of public library librarians that we are busy. Whatever our title or job description, most of us wear many hats and juggle multiple and diverse responsibilities. For many, we consider ourselves lucky when we find time to go to a conference, read a list exchange, or even visit pages such as this.  Unlike our academic counterparts, most of us have no direct mandate to share our experiences, to present, or to publish. 

Nadine Burke Harris Author Photo

Every Single One of Us has a Role to Play in Solving this Crisis: Dr. Nadine Burke Harris on Childhood Adversity

When Dr. Nadine Burke Harris opened her pediatric practice in San Francisco’s Bayview-Hunters Point, she soon noticed a correlation between patients who had experienced some sort of trauma early in life and their physical health. Her resulting research, which built upon the Adverse Childhood Experiences study performed in the 1990s, led to her groundbreaking The Deepest […]

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The Public Spotlights Public Libraries and Homelessness

Emilio Estevez’ The Public, an earnest film about an eventful two days in the life of a public librarian, had its world premiere at the Santa Barbara International Film Festival on Tuesday night. The film centers around Stuart Goodson, a city librarian whose pragmatic and equitable approach to his job is seen from the film’s beginning. He diffuses a dispute involving a mentally ill patron with the same patience that he uses to mentor a colleague through a career transition. In these early scenes, Estevez captures the day-to-day actions in a library with an almost documentary-like quality. We see librarians interact with an array of patrons in a variety of ways, and a montage of absurd reference questions serves as a way to illustrate the breadth of services librarians offer as well as provide some comic relief.

illustration of books on a cart

More Than Just A Page

A customer calls on the phone to ask if her requested items have arrived yet. I ask for her name and place her on hold. A brisk walk over to the far wall, slip down to the ‘P’s and there is Mrs. Peterson’s books. Exactly where they should be! I’m able to do my job well because our library pages do their job well. So why do I still hear my coworkers saying, “Oh, I’m just a Page”?

Indie Book Reviews Art

Review – Housing Projects, Mansions & Schools: An Educator’s Odyssey by Roger Prosise

Our history is filled with examples of people who rose from difficult circumstances to achieve remarkable things. We often hear about them in politics,  sports, and entertainment. We don’t hear about them as often in other areas of life, but perhaps we should. This is why I found Roger Prosise’s book, Housing Projects, Mansions & Schools: An Educator’s Odyssey to be an interesting read.

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Health Resolution: Getting to Know Your Community to Improve Health Information Services

It’s January, a time when everyone seems to be motivated to improve their health and start making healthier choices. Your library can make a healthy resolution, too! It’s always a good time for librarians to consider new programs and ways to improve health information services … but where do you start?

November December 2017 Public Libraries Feature Article Header

Visual Merchandising – Applying Bookstore Insights to Public Library Collections

Looks at bookstore display ideas that can be implemented in libraries.

November December 2017 Public Libraries Feature Article Header

Efficient Librarianship – A New Path for the Profession

Author shares productivity and efficiency practices and explores how utilizing these ideas can positively impact librarianship.

image of an old manuscript

Artificial Intelligence Used to Search Handwritten Manuscripts

Adam Matthew Digital is a UK company that digitizes unique primary sources including periodicals, correspondences, photographs, and even handwritten manuscripts in archives around the world. They share their collections ranging from Medieval Travel Writings, World War Propaganda, and Eighteenth Century Journals with researchers, universities, and libraries. Last month, the company announced the launch of Handwritten Text Recognition (HTR), an artificial intelligence (AI) technology that searches the full-text of their handwritten manuscript collections.

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L.A. Teen Advocate Wins I Love My Librarian! 2017 Award

Annie Cipolla is a Master Gardener and the Young Adult Librarian at the Pacific Palisades Branch of the Los Angeles Public Library. Before becoming a librarian, she worked in television as a broadcast journalist, editor, and producer in Baltimore, San Francisco, New York City and Los Angeles. In recognition of how she weaves together her skills to enrich the lives of teenagers and their families, she is also one of ten librarians from throughout the United States awarded the I Love My Librarian! Award in 2017.

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Our Noble Cause: Reflecting On All We Do Right

The existence of public libraries is not guaranteed. In fact, public libraries continue to operate against a mountain of odds that would suffocate a lesser field. Doors continue to open each day due to the hard scrabble administrators, local officials, front line staff, and librarians who are driven by a sense of mission far greater than paychecks or pensions.

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Using Infographics to Enhance Reader’s Advisory

Barnes & Noble’s list of reads for the biggest travel day of the year wins big.

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Like Oil and Water: Infused Flavors Craft Class

Infused oils and waters are popular right now, with so many books and websites dedicated to this new delicious trend. And they couldn’t be easier to make and teach.