A Publication of the Public Library Association Public Libraries Online
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The Aging Library Staff

These career library workers are part of a small but growing segment of Americans who remain in the workforce into their 70s, 80s and 90s.

Checking Out Securely: The Challenge of Staffless Libraries

Without physical staff, some questions are raised: Who monitors the cameras? Who responds to such emergencies? What will the blind spots in the cameras be (like restrooms), and how will they be dealt with? The prevention of theft is a significant concern as well. Certainly a card system and cameras help, but cards and pins can be stolen and hacked, and identities can be hidden from cameras.

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Big Brother Through the Library

On Monday April 3, 2017 President Trump signed a bill repealing internet privacy rules.

Promoting a Lifelong Love of Reading: PL Talks With Jenny Adams Perinovic

Jenny Adams Perinovic is taking public library outreach services to another level at the Free Library of Philadelphia.

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Managing a Multigenerational Staff

The next time you are pondering the point of view of a colleague from a different era, step back for a minute and reflect on all that they have to share with you, whether younger or older.

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National Library Week Launching Point for Advocacy

Library workers take action to stop proposed budget cuts from eliminating federal funding for libraries.

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Trend Alert: Stuffed Animal Sleepovers

Stuffed animal sleepovers provide the perfect mix of early literacy and fun.

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PBS Back on the Chopping Block

For as long as I can recall, it seems when budget cuts are going to be made, PBS is always named as a candidate for defunding.

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Digital Access Cards for Everyone, Please

If the library card makes a library more accessible, can’t we make the library card easier to get? Imagine if every resident in your community registered for digital access directly from your web site? Then imagine half of those patrons visiting the library to check out books, movies, and music. Wouldn’t that spell success?

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Libraries, Museums, and Fake News

Lately there’s been a lot of talk about fake news and “alternative facts.” As librarians, we help foster intellectual freedom, education and lifelong learning, and provide access to unbiased and accurate information for the communities we serve. All of these ideas originate from our professional Core Values, and we take pride in what we do to support them. That is why it was heartening to see libraries and museums participate in the successful “Day of Facts” campaign on February 17.

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Readers’ Advisory Secrets — A Conversation with Becky Spratford

Whether it’s learning to ski or how to sew a straight seam, a great teacher shows contagious enthusiasm while breaking down the skill into manageable pieces. Becky Spratford is no exception.

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ALA Partners with Sarah Jessica Parker on Book Club Central

The actress is partnering with the ALA to serve as the Honorary Chair of Book Club Central which is a new online podium of reading resources which includes endorsements, expert book lists, and other content for book club members.

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Toiling in Obscurity

The phrase “toiling in obscurity” is an interesting adage used by authors and writers. It is probably in the minds of many librarians—that they are engaged but obscured. Whether you are a new librarian or have been in the system for years and years, preparing books for the public in the back rooms or even at the top as directors and department heads, I suspect every one of you have had days of wondering, “Is this all there is?”

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Joe Scapellato On Fictionalizing Away From A Place That You Know

With his debut collection of short stories, Big Lonesome, Joe Scapellato demonstrates a confident grasp of plot and character that is equal parts Larry McMurtry and George Saunders. Each story examines some facet of America’s West—its characters, environment, and mythology—and celebrates the peculiarities of the region with mordant wit. Publisher’s Weekly praised Scapellato as “an exceptional surrealist” while Kirkus Reviews singled out his ability to be “unpredictable, witty, and self-aware while remaining heartfelt.” Joe Scapellato spoke to Brendan Dowling via telephone on February 2oth.

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The Importance of Understanding and Evaluating Research

As librarians we are not only on the front line of information sharing, we are also its guardians. I believe we need to hold creators accountable. If you don’t know or understand research methods – learn them! If a source or organization will not provide or support the process, don’t support it. We need to start treating data with respect or all information will soon become meaningless.