20 May 2024

Libfocus Link-out for May 2024

Welcome to the May edition of the Libfocus link-out, an assemblage of library-related things we have found informative, educational, thought-provoking and insightful on the Web over the past while.

Photograph of a woman, graphic of person standing on a library card reaching out for items, person in a headscarf looking at barricades, illustrations of a woman and a boy, painting of a man, graphic of a futuristic looking building, library buildings, cartoon character being chased by a paint roller covered in black paint, a logo that reads discover irish children's books
Images featured in this month's link-out articles

2024 Library Systems Report.
This Library Systems Report documents ongoing investments of libraries in strategic technology products during 2023.

Research Libraries Guiding Principles for AI.
A set of principles outlined by ACRL provide a framework for the ethical and transparent use of AI in research libraries.

The ARL/CNI 2035 Scenarios: AI-Influenced Futures in the Research Environment.
The Association of Research Libraries (ARL) and the Coalition for Networked Information (CNI) have chosen to apply scenario planning to imagine a future influenced by artificial intelligence (AI) and to explore the range of uncertainty associated with AI in the research and knowledge ecosystem. The strategic focus and critical uncertainties highlighted in the scenarios were identified through extensive stakeholder engagement with the ARL and CNI membership during the winter of 2023 and spring of 2024 and involved over 300 people. Input was provided through focus groups, workshops, and one-on-one interviews.

The Cover-Up: Under Pressure, Some School Librarians Alter Illustrations to Avoid Book Challenges.
Andrew Bauld interviews librarians who have taken to altering illustrations to avoid book challenges. But by redacting images are they taking part in censorship themselves as a result? From breastfeeding to nudity, Bauld looks at some of the images being covered and why.

Arrests over cross-Europe thefts of rare library books.
Europol announce nine arrests of suspected book thieves that allegedly posed as academics to gain access to the books in order to make counterfeits of “outstanding quality” and later return to swap the copies.

Author’s ‘poisonous’ books removed from Paris library.
A collection by a Limerick author is among a number of – quite literally – poison pen volumes put in quarantine by France’s national library. The library this week removed two volumes of The Ballads of Ireland by Edward Hayes, published in 1855, along with two other 19th Century books, from its shelves on account of their emerald green covers likely being laced with highly poisonous arsenic.

Report Finds No Correlation Between Social Media Engagement and Content Readership.
Some important reading contained in this report if you manage your library's social media.

Discover Irish Children’s Books.
Children’s author Sarah Webb, recent winner of the LAI’s President’s medal is a passionate advocate of literacy, children’s books and Irish libraries. She is leading the Discover Irish Children’s Books Campaign, which highlights and celebrates Irish children’s books. Read more about the campaign and find out how you can become an Irish Children’s Books Champion.

In a Portland Library, Activists Fortify for a Standoff.
In the New York Times Kimberly Cortez and Mike Baker report on the occupation of Portland State University Library. It has been taken over by pro-Palestinian activists who include a mix of students, staff, faculty and community members.

Elisabeth Bik, expert in scientific integrity: ‘We need to slow down scientific publishing’.
The Dutch microbiologist and scientific integrity consultant on why we need to publish less frequently.

Libraries struggle to afford the demand for e-books, seek new state laws in fight with publishers.
A telling example from the US of how ebooks' pricing and licensing impact on public library budgets.

Implementing a Library Services Platform Using an Organizational Framework.
The Florida Virtual Campus (FLVC), a statewide library consortium serving 40 public colleges and universities in Florida, implemented a new integrated library system for all libraries in 2020–2021. The scope and scale of the project were highly complex, requiring robust communication strategies and mechanisms for success. FLVC worked with its member libraries and other stakeholders to create an organizational framework for the project. After the completion of the project, FLVC surveyed project participants to assess the effectiveness of the organizational framework. Overall results were strongly positive, while some areas for improvement were identified.



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