While having a library card typically means borrowing materials free of cost, many of us were made aware young that we would have to pay a fine if we missed the due date. Many libraries across the United States have implemented a fine-free borrowing structure, which encourages more people to utilize the library’s resources.
Historically, redlining refers to the practice of banks using maps to withhold loans for certain areas, usually poor communities of people of color. Now redlining takes digital form as Internet Service Providers (ISPs) get to choose where to build their networks and what types of plans are available. In today’s society, a reliable internet connection is a necessity, often required for job applications, scheduling travel, connecting with others, online education, and more recently working remotely from home. Those without an affordable high speed internet plan are at a distinct disadvantage, and communities with limited ISP options will again face obstacles for growth. Poor communities, often people of color, are being denied options for reliable internet plans when compared to white communities in the same area.
Libraries have always been a forum for ideas, a place for people to come and speak. I think that this is where libraries can make a difference. The public not only wants a chance to hear the issues but also the opportunity to deliberate with their fellow citizens on what those issues mean.
It also demonstrates cowardice and intolerance. If you disagree with someone’s viewpoint, you should have the courage and respect to share and discuss the reasons behind your beliefs. And more importantly, you should have the courage and respect to listen to ideas other than your own.
ALA Editions published a book of essays in 2016 by Rick Anderson called Libraries, Leadership, and Scholarly Communication. The author also has a new book out called Scholarly Communication: What Everyone Needs to Know. I’ve worked with Rick Anderson for nearly a decade now and have read many of his scholarly communication-related articles. I wanted to take the chance to read other essays that I may have missed, especially those about libraries and leadership in general.
by: Andrea Jamison Recently, Forbes posted (and subsequently removed) an opinion editorial that sent librarians and library supporters on a social media tirade. The now archived article, written by Panos Mourdoukoutas, […]
We, as librarians and information specialists, can use our skills and our platform as a center of the community to educate our patrons about the immigrant experience and what it means for children and families to leave behind everything familiar for an unknown country.
By: guest blogger Scott Garner
Dubbed self-censoring, there is a growing concern that many librarians are purposefully omitting certain books and content from library collections due to personal bias opposed to professional judgment. According to an article in the School Library Journal, self-censorship is “a dirty secret that no one in the profession wants to talk about or admit practicing. Yet everyone knows some librarians bypass good books—those with literary merit or that fill a need in their collections.”
To fully understand intellectual freedom, it seems crucial to consider what kinds of barriers to these activities might exist in our local communities and broader American society. The ones I initially think of include self-imposed determinations — I can’t question that! — to outside restrictions — library users in this district can’t access this book! — but perhaps there are others.