Library links: Grab bag

Just because we are so close to Christmas, doesn’t mean things aren’t happening in our libraries. Today I bring you another round of library links, as well as my thoughts one why these particular links piqued my interest.

Conferences are a great way to share ideas, but we need to come away more optimistic about our chances of successfully implementing these ideas in our own libraries!

Conferences are a great way to share ideas, but we need to come away more optimistic about our chances of successfully implementing these ideas in our own libraries!

  • As a new library assistant, I’m excited by the many ways our field is evolving and the opportunities for better serving our patrons. That’s why I love attending conferences where these new ideas are freely shared. But I often hear: “Oh, that’s a nice idea, but it would never work at my library.” Turns out I’m not the only one. Dorothea Salo wrote her recent column, “Beaten Before We Start,” on this common reaction.
  • Kentucky public libraries are facing lawsuits that say they unlawfully raised taxes to fund library programs. According to Kentucky law, any tax raise must be approved by voters in a referendum. If these lawsuits are decided against the libraries, they would have to pay back everything, a catastrophic loss that would lead to dozens of library closures. Many things about this story confuse me, including the fact that libraries actually have the power to raise taxes. If it is done by the state legislature like most states, this might not have become a problem.
  • Speaking of referenda, the American Libraries helpfully tracks referenda and votes every election. This year’s round-up offers some interesting updates from across the country. For example, voters in New Mexico approved the sale of bonds to fund various libraries across the state, revealed continued support for the value of libraries.
  • I hate when patrons preface an interaction in this way: “This is a stupid question, but…” There are no stupid questions, people. Indeed, there are no stupid patrons, either. A blog post about how some librarians think of the patrons is a wake-up call for the profession and worth a read.
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