MiT7 was a great conference – intimate, warm, stimulating, interdisciplinary, and cutting-edge. There were some brilliant minds at work. I plan to post a few comments on the conference later. For now, here are links to podcasts from the three topical plenary sessions: Media in Transition 7: Unstable Platforms Archives and Cultural Memory Power and … Read more MiT7 podcasts
Category: Public Sphere
Media in Transition 7 (MiT 7), a small conference at MIT, is starting Friday and running ’till Sunday. I will be there; if you will be there too please say hello. Anyone wanting to follow the Twitter hash tag can look for #mit7.
The attack on NPR during the present budget scare has been symbolic, but for more reasons than one. It’s been observed that the attack is symbolic because the proposed cuts in funding are not a very significant amount of money in light of the Federal budget problems. But the other reason it is symbolic is … Read more Say it isn’t so, NPR
There is an very good article by David Remnick in the February 28th issue of the New Yorker about Ha’aretz, the Israeli newspaper that has set the standard for accuracy in news there for many years while also providing the main support for pro-Peace viewpoints among Israelis. If you are interested in the role of … Read more Very good article on the Israeli newspaper, Ha’aretz
New book: The Culture of the Internet and the Internet as Cult: Social Fears and Religious Fantasies
The Culture of the Internet and the Internet as Cult: Social Fears and Religious Fantasies Author: Philippe Breton Translator: David Bade Price: $22.00 Published: March 2011 ISBN: 978-1-936117-41-3 Printed on acid-free paper French author Philippe Breton examines the Internet and the culture surrounding it through the lens of its philosophical and cultural background. Central in … Read more New book: The Culture of the Internet and the Internet as Cult: Social Fears and Religious Fantasies
I am not personally diving into the discussion of Judge Chin’s decision on the Google Settlement, because I am too war-weary of fighting it out with other librarians on issues where I feel like a lone dissenter, but I will go as far as to say that I like this post on the topic by … Read more Smart commentary on Judge Chin’s decision
Susan Maret sent an interesting link to the PLG listserv to an article about statutes that create new exemptions to FOIA. If you’re interested in access to government information, this is something you should be aware of.
Librarians interested in intellectual freedom should take note of a case of censorship by copyright lawsuit. Danish artist Nadia Plesner has used an image of a Louis Vuitton handbag in some biting artwork about the genocide in Darfur to show our culpability in not bridging the gap between the tragedy there and our shallow consumerist … Read more Nadia Plesner free speech case
Litwin Books will soon be publishing an English translation of Philippe Breton’s 2000 book, Le culte de l’Internet: Une menace pour le lien social?, under the English title: The Culture of the Internet and the Internet as Cult: Social Fears and Religious Fantasies. Here is a bit from Chapter Four that comes to mind for … Read more Selection from Philippe Breton, relating to Wikileaks
Folks at the Progressive Librarians Guild have put the full text of back issues of their journal, Progressive Librarian, online. Coverage goes back to issue number one, from 1990. I was on the editorial board of Progressive Librarian for a number of years, and consider them an important venue for library literature that works to … Read more Progressive Librarian in full text
We have posted the introduction to Beyond Article 19: Libraries and Social and Cultural Rights to our website. Julie Edwards’ introduction is a good read in itself regarding the United Nations Declaration of Human Rights, particularly Articles 19 and 27. We know about Article 19 as a fundamental support for intellectual freedom, but there is … Read more Introduction to Beyond Article 19
Petition to support NARA’s investigation into CIA destruction of records pertaining to torture sites
Recently, the Department of Justice (DOJ) decided to not bring criminal charges against the Central Intelligence Agency (CIA) for the destruction of federal records: videotapes of the torture of detainees at CIA black sites. The destruction of these records is a clear violation of the Federal Records Act, which DOJ should have pursued. The decision … Read more Petition to support NARA’s investigation into CIA destruction of records pertaining to torture sites
I don’t read a lot of blogs so I don’t know, but I would guess this story is being blogged like crazy: Yesterday the Washington Post reported a Bloomberg National Poll: “Poll shows Americans don’t know economy expanded with tax cuts.” The story starts: The Obama administration cut taxes for middle-class Americans, expects to make … Read more Americans largely mistaken about Obama’s record… librarians included?
Many large institutions, such as universities, are beginning to contract their email services out to Google. At the university where I work, we are in the process of switching our accounts over to Google now. All of our students, faculty, and staff will access their university email accounts through a Google interface. In order to … Read more Institutions are switching to Gmail, but are they discussing the fine print?
Beyond Article 19: Libraries and Social and Cultural Rights Editors: Julie Biando Edwards and Stephan P. Edwards Price: $28.00 Published: October 2010 ISBN: 978-1-936117-19-2 Printed on acid-free paper Beyond Article 19: Libraries and Social and Cultural Rights addresses the subject of libraries and cultural rights, a topic that has received relatively little attention in the … Read more Beyond Article 19: Libraries and Social and Cultural Rights
Recently I have rubbed some people the wrong way by speaking frankly about the problem of ignorance in civic life and people’s lack of concern and lack of shame regarding it. I argued that we should not be trying to increase voter turnout when Americans feel so little responsibility in the way of self-education on … Read more Christine O’Donnell is just what I’ve been talking about
“Library, Inc., by David Goldstein, in the new Chronicle Review, begins: From industry-backed research to CEO-style executive salaries and perquisites, the influence of corporate America on universities has been the subject of much popular and scholarly scrutiny. University libraries have largely escaped that attention. Yet libraries, the intellectual heart of universities, have become perhaps the … Read more Library, Inc. (Chronicle Review)
I just read and enjoyed this paper by MaryBeth Meszaros, “Who’s In Charge Here? Authority, Authoritativeness, and the Undergraduate Researcher,” in Communications in Information Literacy, vol 4, no. 1 (2010). It paints a more pessimistic picture of GenY students than we usually see. I wonder how GenY optimists would respond to her argument. I tend … Read more Undergraduates and the crisis of cognitive authority
Michael Bugeja wrote in Inside Higher Ed (a month ago – sorry for not blogging it sooner) about the proposed discontinuation and reorganization of the journalism school at the University of Colorado at Boulder: “Half-Truths on a J-School.” Readers will notice parallels between what journalism schools and library schools have been facing. I think it … Read more J-Schools in question – a familiar story
I am very serious in the view that we should not be trying to increase voter turnout, in this or any election. Let me explain why. Most of us have the idea that voter turnout rates are a measure of the success of our democracy. If people are “participating,” by voting, then the will of … Read more Get out the books, not the vote