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Sunday
Sep072008

Courage of our convictions


Two library bloggers have recently questioned the wisdom of particular acquisitions they have made for their school libraries. With VP nominee Palin being rumored to have tried to censor library material, I suspect many librarians are a bit sensitive about intellectual freedom right now.


Jeri Hurd has a thoughtful "rant" about how Arabs are treated in the media, whether a book with a great text but an inciteful cover belongs on her shelves, and questions the role of schools and libraries in teaching multi-culturalism and tolerance. READ IT!

And Cathy Nelson wonders if permanently checking out a book on teen-pregnancy to the guidance counselor is a form of censorship.


Members of ALA and AASL on their respective listservs are discussing whether member commentary about Palin places ALA's non-profit status in jeopardy.

Let's review:

We trust Americans to recognize propaganda and misinformation, and to make their own decisions about what they read and believe. We do not believe they need the help of censors to assist them in this task.  American Library Association’s Library Bill of Rights
Young people have First Amendment rights. American Library Association

These are deceptively frightening statements for a large percentage of our parents, teachers and administrators. It takes a deceptively large amount of courage to fight censorship, to defend a wide variety of viewpoints - especially in a politically charged climate.

In the late 70s when I was a high school librarian, the superintendent requested that I take the magazine Psychology Today off the shelves. He objected to the ads for condoms in the back, as I remember.  I didn't remove it, but I didn't make an issue of it either. He just never checked to see if I had actually complied or not. Had the issue been pressed, I'd like to think I would have fought for my students' rights to the information in the magazine. I'd like to think so...

Techs, this certainly not an issue the library alone owns. How will you respond when a parent asks you to block Planned Parenthood, PETA or The Flying Spaghetti Monster websites? Do you have a review process in place or will you be blown about with every political wind? Good time to think about it before the gales of campaigning get stronger...

Saturday
Sep062008

Five for fun

Following fellow columnist Miguel Guhlin's lead on Around the Corner, I here's a link to my latest TechProof column - a silly piece of work - on the Education World website.

A link to all three years of TechProof can be found here.

But read them only after you read Miguel's fine columns.

Saturday
Sep062008

Confundido

Now leaving readers confused at a higher level in Spanish!

BLOGGING Y EL ESPECIALISTA EN MEDIOS
por  Doug Johnson

¿Se ha dado usted cuenta de la transformación que esta ocurriendo en la Web? ¿Expresiones como blogs, wikis, podcasts, y lectores de RSS hacen parte ahora de su vocabulario común y de el de sus estudiantes? Si no lo son, deberían serlo. Estas formas de comunicación y de administración de la información hacen parte de lo que Tim O’Reilly describe como un cambio entre la Web 1.0 y la Web 2.0 [1]: un movimiento en la Web de pasar de un sistema estático de comunicación masiva y de una sola vía, a un medio interactivo y de comunicación personal. (Nota del editor: al final de esta columna y bajo el titulo ‘Recursos’, encontrará una lista de artículos de O’Reilly y de otros directamente relacionados con el tema).

En este documento nos enfocaremos en un solo aspecto del movimiento de la Web 2.0:  Weblogs o blogs como se conocen más comúnmente. Veremos la definición de Blog, mostraremos cómo encontrar los que le interese leer y daremos algunas ideas para mantenerse al día con ellos y adicionalmente ofreceremos una pequeña lista de blogs relacionados con una biblioteca profesional de Medios y de Tecnología [2].
from Eduteka <http://www.eduteka.org/EspecialistaMedios.php>

Cool (refried) beans.