BiblioTech: Why Libraries Matter More Than Ever in the Age of Google by John Palfrey [review]

Libraries | Advocacy | Digitization | Data preservation | Book review

Reviewed by Stephanie L. Gross, MSLIS

BiblioTech: Why Libraries Matter More Than Ever in the Age of GoogleBiblioTech: Why Libraries Matter More Than Ever in the Age of Google by John Palfrey

My rating: 4 of 5 stars

Reviewer bio:
I am an academic librarian whose main responsibility has been to establish and maintain a large database for electronic reserves. I have a solid background in public service, and have mentored library school students and recent graduates for over 10 years. I am conversant in issues relating to access and technology relating to digitization of materials as well as those born-digitally. Since I follow library news on a daily basis, I read this book more as a review of the known, while noting sources for future use. Most of those concerned digitization of material and aspects relating to institutional repositories. A second focus was based on a new work responsibility, that of personal librarian to undergraduate honors students.

Review:
This volume was written by a “feral” librarian with a law degree. It included the major areas where and how libraries are ever-relevant today: users, spaces, platforms, hacking, networks, preservation, education and copyright. Noteworthy highlights for me were the discussions of how some librarians and advocates are reinventing libraries while acknowledging their tradition roles in democratic society. Public, academic, school and special libraries were included. The ‘hybrid-ness’ of libraries is emphasized, along with the innovative factor of digitization of a variety of materials. Risks are involved when print is not saved to backup data. “Data rot” happens when technology fails, but also when newer forms outpace older, obsolete ones. Budgets are stretched to accommodate both digital and analog materials. The author calls for the ‘collaboration’ among librarians, the establishment of library networks, consortia, and private as well as public funding. The conundrum of copyright, data rights and collection policies was briefly examined.

Additional Subject headings might include:

Digital libraries
Web archiving
Digital preservation
Archival materials – Digitization
Library materials — Digitization
View all my reviews

Emerging Trends in Libraries for 2016 Stephen Abram, MLS

ALA Will Posthumously Award Aaron Swartz With James Madison Award | LJ INFOdocket

Filed by on March 14, 2013

Well done. This is something many of us wanted to see.

From the American Library Association:

On Tuesday, March 15, 2013, Rep. Zoe Lofgren (D-CA) will posthumously award activist Aaron Swartz the American Library Association’s (ALA) 2013 James Madison Award during the 15th Annual Freedom of Information Day in Washington, D.C. Swartz will receive the award for his dedication to promoting and protecting public access to research and government information. Read more…

Picture of Aaron Swartz

Picture of Aaron Swartz (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

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“Aaron Swartz embodied the ALA’s principles that value open and equal access to information,” said Lofgren. “Aaron’s passing is a significant loss of an outspoken and passionate advocate.”

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Open University research explodes myth of ‘digital native’

Gerald Haigh visits his alma mater to learn that a good attitude to technology correlates with good learning habits

Girl drawing on touchscreen

Is there a digital native? Not according to new Open University research

A new research project by the Open University explores the much-debated concept of “the digital native”. The university does this by making full use of the rich resource which is its own highly diverse student body.

It concludes that while there are clear differences between older people and younger in their use of technology, there’s no evidence of a clear break between two separate populations.

Is there really a distinct group of younger people who are not only easy with technology because they’ve grown up with it, but actually think and learn differently as a result? The idea gained quite a bit of traction after Marc Prensky wrote about the idea ten years ago in Digital Natives, Digital Immigrants,  with other writers weighing in, such as Bradley Jorgensen with Generation X and Generation Y.

Since then, the concept has often been questioned, and even Prensky’s own ideas have changed somewhat. The notion persists in the public imagination though. After all, it seems to bear the fatal hallmark of “common sense”. On one side of the divide is the young person who uses technology like she drives her car, without the need for conscious attention to the process. On the other side sits a grizzled and mature individual, maybe a would-be ‘silver surfer’, frowning impotently at a keyboard and calling for his granddaughter.

This isn’t, though, just a saloon bar debating point, or material for yet another Grumpy Old Men TV programme. If there really is a clear generational separation of brain process, then we need to know more about it because there are important implications for learning. Read more…

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Why We Miss the First Sale Doctrine in Digital Libraries

By on March 8, 2013 Leave a Comment

From

 

This is the fourth in an occasional series of articles that will explore issues surrounding the efforts to launch and expand the Digital Public Library of America.

 


 

John PalfreyPublishers, ebook vendors, and libraries are engaged in a “tug of war” over the lending of electronic books, according to Library Journal’s recent ebook survey. This clash inhibits most libraries from fulfilling their important institutional missions to provide access to knowledge and preserve our cultural heritage. In the best case, this tug of war will be a temporary struggle. The best outcome is not a winner who holds all the rope and another lying on the ground with rope-burned hands. If there must be a winner of any kind, it ought to be the reading public.

 

In this article, the fourth installment in a series on the initiative to build a Digital Public Library of America, I examine the underlying role of law in the ebook lending debate, explore potential solutions to the problems, and consider how the DPLA can contribute to solutions for those we serve. At the core of this issue is the way the copyright law works–or doesn’t–when it comes to books, libraries, and readers in the United States today and into the future. Read more…

 

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Episode 104: Professor Sees ‘Moral Imperative’ for Open Access – Tech Therapy – The Chronicle of Higher Education

Podcast link : http://chronicle.com/blogs/techtherapy/2013/03/06/episode-104-professor-sees-moral-imperative-for-open-access/?cid=wc&utm_source=wc&utm_medium=en

March 6, 2013, 3:12 pm

David Parry

David Parry, an assistant professor of emerging media and communications at the University of Texas at Dallas, argues that scholars have an obligation to publish their research in journals that make free copies available online. The Tech Therapy team talks with him about how the debate over open access to research has heated up in recent months, and invites journal publishers to give their views on next month’s podcast.

Links discussed in this episode: Memorials for Aaron Swartz Turn to Discussion of How to Honor His Legacy | Knowledge Cartels v. Knowledge Rights

Each month The Chronicle’s Tech Therapy podcast offers analysis of and advice on what the latest gadgets and buzzwords mean for professors, administrators, and students. Join your hosts, Jeff Young, The Chronicle’s technology editor, and Warren Arbogast, a technology consultant who works with colleges, for a lively discussion—as well as interviews with leading thinkers in technology.

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