Top Ten Links 2.44: eBooks, Digital Literacy, Transliteracy, Libraries & Quitting Google

My personally selected top ten from the links I shared on Twitter 10.30.2011 through 11.05.2011. In no particular order:

1. Free eBooks, Piracy & Secondhanding

Musing on ebook piracy and free downloads yesterday at Alan Baxter’s blog, I made a passing comparison between the digital distribution of books, whether legally or illegally, and the sale of second-hand hardcopies. In both instances, neither author nor publisher makes money on the transaction, but whereas the former practice is almost invariably viewed as foolhardiness where legal and theft where not, the latter is viewed as a benevolent, even positive, parallel economy – and the more I think about this distinction,  the more arbitrary it seems.

2. Digital Literacy in US Public Libraries 

 Excerpted from the Library Technology Reports August / September 2011 (vol. 47, no. 6) “The Transforming Public Library Infrastructure,” ALA Office for Resarch and Statistics. C

While information literacy has been well defined over the past two decades in our school and academic libraries, public libraries are newer to formal instruction in this arena. For many public libraries, teaching basic computers skills—in classes or as needed—has become a requirement as critical interactions with employers and government agencies demand it from those seeking resources and opportunities and as these individuals come to the library to access such resources. With computer skill classes now a regular part of the library landscape, it is time to raise the bar and expand patrons’ digital fluency and evaluation skills.

3. MediaShift . E-Book Publishers Must Provide Flexible Access to Avoid ‘Media Hell’ | PBS – From the PBS series Beyond the Book

 Consumers like me want to enjoy the digital version of a book when, where and how we want. We love to be able to read it from multiple screens, search it automatically, share annotations, even have the text read aloud as we drive or do dishes.

In theory that’s the promise of the new world of book publishing. But in practice, we’re blocked at many turns and end up looking for other solutions. For publishers and booksellers, that’s not a good thing, and can even be quite costly.

4. What libraries can do when they buy an ebook

 When a library buys (not licenses) a copy of an ebook, it is subject to the same copyright restrictions and allowances as when the library buys a hardback copy.  It has no more legal right to make 10 copies of Wikileaks and the Age of Transparency, to lend out to 10 patrons simultaneously, than if it had bought the hardback.

5 I can’t wait to read how this works out! Good luck! RT@librarianwilk: Life after Google – Follow along as Lane Wilkinson tries to quit Google

Remember when Google was just a search engine? Yeah, me neither. With the way Google has infiltrated every nook and cranny of our digital lives, it’s almost hard to imagine life before Google. For the past two years, I’ve used Google services like Search, Reader, Blogger, Alerts, News, and Buzz as my means of professional communication. I use Chrome on my PC and Android on my phone. I’ve used Picasa to manage photos, YouTube for entertainment, and Earth to explore. And I’m not even going to start with Maps, Calendar, Notebook, Scholar, Images…you get the idea. And now, I’m supposed to join Google+, the future of social media. A seamless integration and consolidation of existing Google services into a harmonious user-experience that addresses the beauty and richness of sharing in–

Damn it. No. Just no. I’m not having this social media crap.

6. Transliteracy, plain language & post-structuralism


So transliteracy is about being able speak, read, write, use sign language, and interpret messages from a wide variety of technologies, including those that come free with our own bodies, and to use those technologies to convey our own messages. In short, it’s about people talking to people however they choose to do so.

That made me think of transliteracy in a completely different way and brought me back to plain language. I think the key to all this is communication. Yes, there are more ways to communicate than ever before but it’s still communication

7. Does culture really want to be free? – Art in Crisis

Are new media companies “digital parasites”? The author of “Free Ride” tells Salon piracy is killing art

8. Change of Subject: Cut libraries? Shush!


A library today is less a destination for knowledge seekers as it is a portal — a point of entry to the ever more vast resources available at the click of a mouse.

The “fundamental function of all current public libraries is challenged by these Internet alternatives,” says “Confronting the Future: Strategic Visions for the 21st Century Public Library,” (pdf)  a 26-page analysis by consultant Roger Levien, a former ALA fellow.

Not just the function, but the funding, particularly when many municipalities are strapped for cash.

In June, the ALA reported in “New library study: demand up for technology, budget cuts limit access”  that 55 percent of urban library districts and 36 percent of suburban library districts have seen budget decreases this year, while 32 percent of urban libraries (16 percent overall) have recently had to trim their hours of operation.

9. the two most important things I know about public speaking Andromeda Yelton shares some great speaking and presenting tips.

10.  Library closures are adding to anxiety for the elderly, says report via @Fight4libraries:

 A charity report found that older people have trouble getting information about public services, such as details of libraries and public transport, because so much of it is kept online.




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