Thursday, November 30, 2006

Experts Rate Wikipedia Higher Than Non-Experts

Given our Wikipedia topic for Monday, I found this ars technica article from Monday interesting. The basic finding in this small study: non-experts are more critical of Wikipedia's accuracy than experts are.

Yahoo vs. Google: Digital Libraries- New York Times Article

Yahoo Rebuffs Google on Digital Books

http://www.nytimes.com/2006/11/30/technology/30yahoo.html?_r=1&ref=technology&oref=slogin

By THE ASSOCIATED PRESS
Published: November 30, 2006

SAN FRANCISCO, Nov. 29 (AP) — Yahoo has rebuffed Google’s attempt to learn more about its efforts to create digital copies of books, dealing Google another setback as it prepares to fight a copyright infringement suit.
In rejecting Google’s request, Yahoo adopted the same stance taken last month by the Internet retailer Amazon.com, and called Google’s request a brazen attempt to pry into its trade secrets.
Google says it believes it can defend its plans to provide online access to millions of library books by obtaining more details about similar projects involving rivals.
A group of publishers and the Authors Guild sued Google in a New York federal court last year, claiming that the company did not get proper approval to make copies of books available to anyone with an Internet connection.
As it gathers evidence for its case, Google has subpoenaed Amazon.com, Yahoo and Microsoft, among others. Yahoo and Microsoft are part of a large alliance of businesses and libraries working together to create a digital database of books. Amazon.com has scanned a large number of books so consumers can read excerpts from books that they may want to buy.

Wednesday, November 29, 2006

WIkipedia Annotated Bibliography

Here is the annotated bibliography for our Wikipedia presentation.

General Wikipedia Information

Binkley, P. "Wikipedia Grows Up." Feliciter 52.2 (2006): 59-61.
The article provides information on Wikipedia, a multilingual Internet encyclopedia. Wikipedia aims to be a multilingual free encyclopedia of the highest possible quality. One of the disadvantages of Wikipedia that critics raised is its openness. However, Wikipedia has much to offer even in the realm of politics.

Graff, K. "Wikipedia Will Change the World." Booklist 102.16 (2006): 76.
The author explains how Wikipedia is democratic in nature. He believes the model of Wikipedia can be used in multiple settings and is an example to be followed (e.g., in classroom settings). Wikipedia is just one of many sources that can be used, and is not a threat to encyclopedias like Britannica.

“History of Wikipedia.” Wikipedia. 2006. Wikipedia. 4 November 2006.
The entry of “history of Wikipedia” on the Wikipedia website gives a brief overview of the history and growth of Wikipedia. This includes information on how the project began, the international expansion of Wikipedia, the marketing of Wiki- products in other forms of media, and some of the conflicts that have occurred in Wikipedia’s past.

Wikipedia as a Reference Resource and Educator

Barack, L. “A Wiki War on Vandals.” School Library Journal 52.5 (2006): 24.
This short article focuses on how Wikipedia vandals are dealt with. Those who intentionally insert errors can be faced with anything from a warning, to temporary blocking, or expulsion from the site if necessary.

Effert, Robert. “Wikipedia, the Review." School Library Journal 52.3 (2006): 82-85.
This SLJ review examines the accuracy, readability, and scope of Wikipedia compared to traditional online reference sources and examines a side-by side comparison. Although Wikipedia entries are general extensive and well-researched, the inconsistencies and confusing text and page structure make it unreliable as sole source of information.

Ishizuka, K. “The Wikipedia Wars.” School Library Journal 50.11 (2004): 24-5.
Again, this article stresses that although Wikipedia is more reliable than many other online resources, it should not be used in isolation. It can also serve as a teachable moment to help students develop critical thinking skills when using online information resources.

McPherson, Keith. “Wikis and Literacy Development.” Teacher Librarian 34.1(2006):
67-71.
This article examines four areas educators need to keep in mind when exposing students to public wikis: reading levels, internet access, learning objectives, and information quality. The reading level on public wikis may be high, but the interactive texts can encourage students to raise their literacy level. Again, the article discusses that if used, the teacher/librarian must make teaching how to evaluate the information a priority.

Miller, B. X., et. al. “I Want My Wikipedia!” Library Journal 131.6 (2006): 122, 124
Three Library Journal reviewers examine Wikipedia in relation to its information on pop culture, current affairs, and science. What they found was that Wikipedia entries on pop culture are extensive and well-researched and great care is taken to ensure the validity and objectivity of current affair entries. However, entries relating to science were inconsistent and poorly researched. The main idea here is that a user needs to consider exactly how they are intending to use this resource.

Wikipedia for Academic Research?

Rosenzweig, R. “Can History Be Open Source? Wikipedia and the Future of the Past.” Journal of American History 93.1 (2006):117-147.
In this article, Rosenzweig, a historian, examines the history of Wikipedia, explains its editorial process, and considers whether open-source internet projects, particularly Wikipedia, can work for the creation of a good historical resource. He argues that “professional” historians can’t simply dismiss Wikipedia; after all, their students use it (and even cite it) regularly. Instead, he offers a critique of its values and limitations, and asks his fellow historians to consider contributing to it. On the positive side, the author writes, Wikipedia is free and often accurate. On the negative side, many entries include quirky, interesting facts that aren’t necessarily important; he calls it “popular” history. Also, entries often include new, controversial interpretations of historical events, interpretations that haven’t withstood the test of time. This is a worthwhile, in-depth (30 page) article that future college and university librarians will find particularly relevant.

Nicholson, P. J. “The Changing Role of Intellectual Authority.” ARL 247 (2006): 1-5.
Peter Nicholson, in these remarks given at an ARL (Association of Research Libraries) meeting in May 2006, discusses sweeping changes in the information-seeking behaviors of students and faculty. He asserts that these changes are due to two main factors. First, as a society we are less willing these days to defer to any authority, including intellectual authority. Second, globalization and the World Wide Web have led to a glut of information that is increasingly difficult to manage, evaluate and synthesize. He calls our new information world an “infosphere” and identifies Wikipedia as a necessary “species” within it. Wikipedia, Nicholson concludes, “provides a great first cut at coherently organized material plus a good set of relevant links.” The role of research libraries is to take it from there.

Wikipedia and False Information

Seigenthaler, J. “A False Wikipedia ‘biography.’” Wikipedia Watch. 1 Nov. 2006.
http://www.wikipedia-watch.org/usatoday.html
Seigenthaler, a journalist and fierce defender of First Amendment rights, was the victim of an incorrect, defamatory entry on Wikipedia, in which it was suggested that he was involved in the assassinations of John and Robert Kennedy. While many incorrect entries are corrected quickly on Wikipedia, this entry remained unchanged for 132 days. In this op-ed article, Seigenthaler argues that Wikipedia, with its “anonymous volunteer vandals” is an irresponsible enterprise. He also points out that other reference services, including answers.com and reference.com, take much of their information from Wikipedia, thereby reproducing any false information contained in Wikipedia’s entries

Bates, M. E. “Truth and Fiction on the Web.” Online 30.2 (2006): 64.
Bates, a private information professional, offers two examples of the spreading of false information on the Web. She suggests that one role of “info pros” is to help information consumers identify and verify the good, the bad and the ugly out there. One way to do this, she tells us, is by checking and correcting articles on Wikipedia.

Tuesday, November 28, 2006

Extended Bibliography of Patriot Act readings (Group 3)

Here is our full bibliography, in case you'd like to learn more about the Patriot Act debate:

Group 3 Bibliography


History of the Patriot Act as it pertains to libraries, section 215:

Civil Liberties in Times of War. Congressional Digest; Sep2005, Vol. 84 Issue 7, p193-193, 1p

Restrictions on Civil Liberties. Congressional Digest; Sep2005, Vol. 84 Issue 7, p194-195, 2p

: USA PATRIOT Act. Congressional Digest; Sep2005, Vol. 84 Issue 7, p196-224, 3p

Wheeler, Maurice B. “The Politics of Access: Libraries and the Fight for Civil Liberties in Post-9/11 America” Radical History Review. 2005.93 (2005): 79-95.

The author states librarians' concerns about section 215 of the PATRIOT Act within the context of the Bill of Rights and the current national political climate.

"New Bill by Sen. Leahy, Others Seeks to Restore Privacy and Civil Liberties Protections to Patriot Act." US Fed News Service, Including US State News (Mar 8, 2006): n/a, http://proquest.umi.com.ezproxy.library.wisc.edu/pqdweb?did=999763651&Fmt=7&clientId=65345&RQT=309&VName=PQD.

"NEWSMAKER: Straight Answers from Russ Feingold." American Libraries 37, no. 2 (Feb, 2006): 20, http://proquest.umi.com.ezproxy.library.wisc.edu/pqdweb? did=985446681&Fmt=7&clientId=65345&RQT=309&VName=PQD.

"Rep. Degette: American Values Remain at Risk." US Fed News Service, Including US State News (Mar 7, 2006): n/a, http://proquest.umi.com.ezproxy.library.wisc.edu/pqdweb?did=998991151&Fmt=7&clientId=65345&RQT=309&VName=PQD.

Two of the three readings above are press releases. The third, an interview with Russ Feingold in American Libraries – basically serves the same function: to publicly denounce the PATRIOT Act, and promise constituents that the politicians will keep fighting for civil liberties.

ALA position:

American Library Association. The USA PATRIOT Act.
http://www.ala.org/ala/washoff/WOissues/civilliberties/theusapatriotact/usapatriotact.htm
~This section of the ALA Website offers information on the PATRIOT Act from librarians’ point of view. It provides a brief overview of the origins and intent of the act, and describes the act’s relevance to libraries and library services. Also, the website provides a relatively detailed account of the act’s various challenges and changes, and gives a few suggestions for further reading and a link to the ALA’s e-advocacy site.

Freedom to Read Act:

Bernie Sanders: Vermont’s Independent Congressman. bernie.house.gov.
~The homepage of Bernie Sanders, the Congressman who introduced the Freedom to Read Bill in response to the Patriot Act; it’s updated regularly, and is a great source of information on impending legislation, as well as a source for other helpful websites.

http://www.ala.org/ala/washoff/WOissues/civilliberties/theusapatriotact/usapatriotact.htm
~This is the URL for the Related Links and Related Files from the ALA site.
You need to scroll almost to the bottom to find the list of sources, but a few examples they list are: Guidelines for Librarians on the USA PATRIOT Act, a tip sheet for librarians, and a selected bibliography with citations for articles by the ACLU and others.


Pro-Patriot Act Opinions/ Conservative Librarians

http://chronicle.com/free/v52/i06/06b01201.htm
"The Loneliness of the Conservative Librarian," by David Durant, Gov Docs librarian at East Carolina U. Chronicle of Higher Education, 30 September 2005.

SHUSH: a website for the conservative librarian. Moderator: Gregory McClay, Systems Librarian, Lowell, Mass. Site includes links to conservative librarian blogs. See the link to "Librarians for Victory", a petition with signatures of 75 U.S. librarians.
http://www.shush.ws/


Librarians in the field: practical responses, ethical questions

Bowers, Stacey L. "Privacy and Library Records." Journal of Academic Librarianship 32.4 (2006): 377-83.
~This source documents the history of privacy and its challenges in a library setting. It doesn’t focus just on the USA Patriot Act, but also delves into its predecessor in library privacy FISA.

"Civil Liberties in Times of War." Congressional Digest 84.7 (2005): 193-.
~This entire issue of Congressional Digest is dedicated to the topic of “Civil Liberties in Times of War.” A great overall summary of what the law entails is one of the many articles in this issue.

Dawson, Emily-Jane. “Library Ethics and the Problem with Patriotism.” Revolting Librarians Redux. Eds. Katia Roberto and Jessamyn West. North Carolina: McFarland & Co., 2003. 95-100.
~This essay raises a variety of issues concerning patriotism and the USA PATRIOT Act within public library systems and bookstores. Written by a library assistant, this article gives a first hand view of dealing with issues of patriotism in regards to co-workers, bosses, patrons, and government officials.

Flanders, Laura. “Librarians under siege” The Nation. 5 Aug. 2002: Vol.275, Issue. 5.

~Under an obscure provision of the USA Patriot Act, federal agents can obtain a warrant to acquire information about library users. The pressure librarians are under to provide information about users despite their determination to protect reader privacy is discussed.

Foerstel, Herbert. N. Refuge of a Soundrel. Westport: Libraries Unlimited, 2004.
~A vehement attack against the Patriot Act, Foerstel, a librarian, provides an overview of the Patriot Act and its impact on libraries; a recommended read according to Library Journal, Booklist, Libraries and Culture, College & Research Libraries, and Technical Services Quarterly.

Gorman, Michael. "Those Lost Liberties may be Your Own." American Libraries 37.6 (2006): 5-
~The current ALA president’s response to the USA Patriot Act and what it means.

Minow, Mary. “The USA PATRIOT Act.” Library Journal October 2002: 52-55.
~This article provides background information on the USA PATRIOT Act and offers librarians suggestions for protecting patron privacy. Found at:
http://www.libraryjournal.com/article/CA245044.html

O'Connor, Anahad. "Librarians Win as U.S. Relents on Secrecy Law." New York Times 155.53548 (2006): B1-6.
~A New York Times article about how in the Connecticut case, the judge ruled to allow the libraries to identify themselves as recipients of a request for patron records.

The Patriot Act: Opposing Viewpoints. New York: Greenhaven Press, 2005.
~A collection of essays by various authors’ on subjects related to the Patriot Act, several of which discuss libraries and the field of librarianship in depth, and offer some rather interesting perspectives. Attention is also given to impending legislation, including the proposed Freedom to Read Bill.

Monday, November 27, 2006

Wikipedia Readings for Group 2

Here are the readings for our presentation Monday. There are three readings but two are really short actual wikipedia entries and are a good introduction to what the presentation will be covering. The Library Journal article is a general background on what Wikipedia does well and what it doesn't do so well and some issues that have risen with the unique peer editing aspect of Wikipedia.

"I want my Wikipedia" by B.X.Miller
https://mywebspace.wisc.edu/dazwicky/web/450/ProQuest.pdf

The above article is up on our website but I figured most would appreciate a direct link.


History of Wikipedia
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/History_of_wikipedia

Criticisms of Wikipedia
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Criticism_of_wikipedia


Also here is a link to our website. We will be going over its contents in class but feel free to browse.
http://mywebspace.wisc.edu/dazwicky/web/450/main.htm

Ok and finally here is a bibliography of the articles we used in get this project rolling. They are not part of the reading for class Monday but some are pretty interesting if you have the desire for some extra (and not incredibly difficult) reading. Annotations will be posted shortly to allow an overview of the below articles.

Barack, L. “A Wiki War on Vandals.” School Library Journal 52.5 (2006): 24.

Bates, M. E. “Truth and Fiction on the Web.” Online 30.2 (2006): 64.

Binkley, P. “Wikipedia Grows Up.” Feliciter 52.2 (2006): 59-61.

Effert, Robert. “Wikipedia, the Review." School Library Journal 52.3 (2006): 82-85.

Graff, K. “Wikipedia Will Change the World.” Booklist 102.16 (2006): 76.
“History of Wikipedia.” Wikipedia. 2006. Wikipedia. 4 November 2006 < http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/History_of_Wikipedia>.

Ishizuka, K. “The Wikipedia Wars.” School Library Journal 50.11 (2004): 24-5.

McPherson, Keith. “Wikis and Literacy Development.” Teacher Librarian 34.1(2006):
67-71.

Nicholson, P. J. “The Changing Role of Intellectual Authority.” ARL 247 (2006): 1-5.

Richardson, Will. “WHAT’S A WIKI? A Powerful C

PATRIOT Act readings for Dec. 3

Here are the readings and websites to study for group 3's presentation on the PATRIOT Act. There are three listed, but don't worry: The first one is very short. In these readings, we seek to present both the pro-Patriot Act view and the more critical view. Also, we have included section 215 of the act, which is the section most salient to future librarians and information professionals.

http://www.patriotdebates.com/act-section-215
This shows Section 215 and sub-sections 501 and 502 of the Patriot Act. These are of interest to library and information professionals because they affect patron privacy and FBI access to library records. Remember: you only need to read sections 215, 501, and 502.

www.shush.ws
This calls itself "A Website for the Conservative Librarian." If you click on "Other Reads," you will find two articles that are especially relevant to our discussion under the heading, "Patriot Act," fittingly enough. No need to read both of the articles--just pick one that interests you most. There are also linked blogs and forums you could check out.

http://www.ala.org/ala/oif/ifissues/usapatriotactlibrary.htm
This is the ALA's response to the PATRIOT Act. Please peruse the site and check out any of the links you find most interesting.

We're looking forward to a lively discussion on Monday! See you all then.

Articles for group one presentation (Banned Books)

Book Banning in Boston:
Boyer, Paul S. "Boston Book Censorship in the Twenties," American Quarterly 15 (1963): 3-24
http://mywebspace.wisc.edu/hilieberman/web/boyer.pdf?uniq=w90wbu

Buddha at the Gate
James LaRue (2004, December). Buddha at the Gate, Running: Why People Challenge Library Materials. American Libraries, 35(11), 42-44. Retrieved November 19, 2006, from Social Science Module database. (Document ID: 761704191).
http://mywebspace.wisc.edu/hilieberman/web/larue.pdf?uniq=4fxpq0

The Internet Filter Farce: (discusses internet filtering)
Geoffrey Nunberg, "The Internet Filter Farce," The American Prospect
vol. 12 no. 1, January 1, 2001 - January 15, 2001.
http://mywebspace.wisc.edu/cycollins/web/Nunberg.pdf

Sunday, November 26, 2006

Follow up to the Fond du Lac Book Banning story

Earlier it was blogged here that a parent had objected to a student having to read " I Know Why the Caged Bird Sings". If you follow the link you can read the story from Channel 3 (WISC-TV) about the topic, and also an interesting non-scientific viewer survey which shows a significant support for letting the students read the book.

http://www.channel3000.com/news/10395297/detail.html

Questions for Monday

Rubin: Information Technologies
  • Copyright eInfringement?
    Given the restrictions placed on the flow of information by copyright laws, what is the realistic possibility for the networking of information? How can we as librarians make this possible without violating the law? How do the "rights management" or "access management" concerns of publishers affect the library that wants to "go digital"? How do we reconcile the obligations to the public and to the copyright holder?

  • Digital Disenfranchisement?
    Rubin writes that "the Internet is far from being conveniently accessible from everywhere" in terms of social and economic barriers. How do digital libraries accommodate those without access? According to the article, 95% of people live near a place where internet access is possible, but how many of those people have it in their homes? For those who don't, how convenient is the access? How is the digitization of libraries connected to the technological state of the community that the library serves? What should be in place in a community before the library that serves it goes fully digital? If a patron cannot afford paid access required by Rights Management to digital content at a public library, how do we ensure that they will have access equality?

  • Digital Collections: Better Than Physical?
    Rubin distinguishes between an actual physical library and a library collection and often appears to argue for the value of digital library collections. Do you agree with Rubin's assertion that digital library collections are far more convenient and cost effective or do you see more value in physical libraries that are both expensive to maintain and have inconvenient hours? Do you believe public libraries are underutilized due to their business hours?

  • Esoteric Information Without Support?
    Rubin touts the leveling quality of digitally-available information, saying that "information once available only to the professional is now directly available to all." However, is it an unambiguously good thing to give people unassisted access to esoteric information (for example, legal, financial, or medical) without a knowledgeable intermediary to help them navigate and interpret it? Can you imagine situations where we might actually do harm by setting people lose on information without guidance? On the other hand, given that the genie is out of the bottle on all of this, are there ways that LIS professionals and other professionals can make their help and guidance more easily accessible?

  • Implications for Searching?
    Rubin discusses different models of digital information searching. What are the advantages and disadvantages of keyword searching vs. subject searching? Rubin also writes that some people today believe that manual card catalogs have some distinct advantages over electronic ones. Do you agree with this statement? If so, what are some of these advantages?
Arms: Digital Libraries
  • Affects on Public Libraries?
    Arms makes little mention of public libraries in the chapter "Libraries, Technology and People." Instead he focuses more on academic and professional users. How do you think digital libraries will play into the role of the public library? Will they one day replace public libraries completely, as was suggested might happen to some profession-based libraries? What issues of Class does this raise?

  • Digital vs. Traditional Librarianship?
    Digital libraries have certainly grown out of the Library community, but often the core technological advances have been driven by the Computer Science community at least as much, if not more. Are there unique Librarianship concerns that are not addressed by thinking in terms of information science? How do we address these in an era of digitization? Arms defines "digital library" as a "managed collection of information". How does the concept of "managing" electronic resources differ from the traditional role librarians have played in the past?

  • Implications of Military Funding?
    In his chapter "Innovation and Research", Arms mentions DARPA as the biggest sponsor of computer science research and therefore in digital library research and he writes that, "ultimately its mission is to support the military." What implications does this have for digital libraries? How might it affect digital libraries in the lives of everyday users, if at all?

  • Does the Shift to Digital Change Textual Material? Change Us?
    Arms writes that "people do not change because a new technology is invented". Do you agree or disagree and why? What about Arms' statement that "words that are spoken have a different impact from words that are written, and online textual materials are subtly different from either the spoken or the printed word"?

  • How Openly Available Is It?
    Arms states that most of the "information on the networks has been made openly available, with no restrictions on access". Do you think Prof. Eschenfelder would agree with this assessment? How does an economic/consumer model of the Internet affect access?

Coffee and Kafka

From this morning's news — how some Pittsburgh area libraries are updating themselves "to remain relevant in the age of the Internet, instant messaging and YouTube."

Thursday, November 23, 2006

Intellectual Freedom in Wisconsin

A small group of parents in Fond du Lac, WI want Maya Angelou's I Know Why the Caged Bird Sings removed from the high school's curriculum, due to the discussion of Angelou's childhood rape trauma. Fond du Lac High School is the largest high school in the state.

Fond du Lac Reporter Article

I was home for Thanksgiving and saw this in the paper. I just thought it might be of interest. I'm told that the most effective speakers at the preliminary meeting were librarians from UW-Oshkosh.

Wednesday, November 22, 2006

Graphic Novels on WPR

This Sunday at 9:00 am, Wisconsin Public Radio is having a program about graphic novels. It's part of "To the Best Of Our Knowledge," and it features Chris Ware and Marjane Satrapi, two big graphic novelists. It should be interesting. You can tune it in at 88.7 fm, or you can find out more about the program at www.wpr.org/book. Click on "Show and Tell."
Happy Thanksgiving, everyone!

Tuesday, November 21, 2006

Google's Book Project -- A New Application?

Slate presents an article on a new use for the searchable text provided by Google's Book Project: spotting plagiarism. New technologies lead to unforeseen uses. I thought it was particularly interesting to note that there were several published authors who are now thought to have lifted sections of long-dead authors' works.

Monday, November 20, 2006

Tasers, racial profiling, and university libraries

By now most of you have probably heard a bit of the news story coming out of the UCLA campus library, or seen the "shaky footage of a student, 23-year-old Mostafa Tabatabainejad, being tasered — repeatedly — in the library of the University of California, Los Angeles by campus police officers last Tuesday evening."

The NYT weblog "The Lede" has a nice summary of the coverage: "According to most published reports, Mr. Tabatabainejad had been using the library peaceably, but was asked to show an I.D. after 11 p.m., as was policy. His refusal, or reluctance or inability to produce identification — and/or leave the library — escalated into the melee."

The report continues, with video, at The Lede.

Saturday, November 18, 2006

"Double Fold" by Baker- discussion questions

Hello! Hopefully everyone is staying sane in their end-of-semester crunch time, and you've got enough brain power left over from all your hard work to ponder some questions on this week's reading.

1) Baker defines the difference between conservation and preservation in that conservation aims to preserve or repair the original document, preservation aims to maintain or preserve the words or images from the original document (107-108). Do you agree with this distinction? If so, if your goal is to preserve a book, is it also possible to conserve it?

2) With the Google Book project and UW’s participation in it, according to the UW website there are three main reasons that are listed for joining the project, storage, preservation and access. Do these motives differ from the motives that created the push to move newspapers, periodicals and books to microfilm? Do you think projects like Google Book learned from the past and the first push to move text from being bound to being available in Microfilm? What do you think Baker would think of Google Book? Do you think librarians as a profession and our society as a whole are doing enough to keep digital books and PDFs from being the next version of microfilms and optical disks?

3) The title of the book is Double Fold, based on the test that is used to determine the brittleness of a book. Baker dismisses that test because he believes it doesn’t test the true factor in deciding whether a book is in usable condition and offers his own test to determine the viability of a book. Do you think the double fold test is valid? If not, is Baker’s test valid? If it’s not valid, then why has the double fold test almost universally been accepted as reasonable libraries?

4) Baker quotes G. Thomas Tanselle in stating that Tanselle believes libraries should “aspire to the condition of museums. All their books are treasures, in a sense; the general stacks become a sort of comprehensive rare-book room – not staffed and serviced as rare-book rooms are,obviously, but understood as occupying the same kind of unreformattable sensorium.” Baker also quotes Philip Mores and his view of the modern library “cannot now be operated as though it were a passive repository for printed material.” Which statement do you think lines up more with the purpose for the library today?

5)A reoccurring theme in Double Fold is the idea that those involved in the destruction of newspapers and books to be microfilmed are destroying important public historical artifacts without the publics knowledge or consent. Is Baker overstating this, or are the advocates of microfilming and digitizing documents really robbing us of our heritage?

6) Baker spends a lot of time discussing how funding was procured for projects like Brittle Book and attempts to “deacidfy” books, using both private and government funds. In Double Fold, was motivation for these projects ways to get funds for the library or did the people running these programs truly believe in their programs cause? How much does the drive to fund libraries and library projects determine what projects are taken up in the library world?

7)Baker claims that storing books and newspapers is less costly than microfilming them, and that library professionals are overselling the "space limitations" quandary. Are libraries really that pressed for space? If so, are there other alternatives for storage than Bakers "large building near Washington"?

8)Do you think his ideals of having multiple copies of each bound item in the library is something that can be achieved? Think in terms of our society today: one bound (pun not intended) by budget cuts and job cutbacks...is this something that can happen?

9)How can ordinary citizens who are opposed to the destruction of newspapers and books for microfilming get involved? What political recourse exists for them?

10) Contrast Baker's work with Levy's "Scrolling Forward". One noteworthy factor in comparing the two authors and their point of view is their background and experience. While Baker is a well-known novelist, Levy has real-world experience both as an IT expert (working at Xerox PARC) and a print culture expert (working with historic forms of calligraphy). How do you think their divergent backgrounds have an impact on their viewpoints?

11) Every great story has its villains. Baker has no shortage of evil henchmen in this book- Verner Clapp comes to mind as the Lex Luthor of "Double Fold". However, more often than not, the key players in the microforms push often come across as characters and not real people. Do you think there's more to their opinions than simply a displeasure for old books, a desire to save space, and a love of new gadgets? Do you think that a desire for heightened academic and professional standing factored in their viewpoints? Do you think that these "villains" would have been as successful at their public awareness-raising and corresponding funds-getting if they would have pushed for simply more storage space or improved conservation?

12) What do you think of the fact that Print Culture History as a valid field of academic study has practically no mention in "Double Fold"? Keep in mind that the field rose to prominence in the late 1970's, yet the film "Slow Fires" was developed in the late '80s and its subsequent result on discarded collections didnt happen until the 1990s. In addition, Baker constantly laments the fact that technology enthusiasts ("preservationists"?) far outnumber those with actual bookbinding and paper chemistry experience ("conservationists"?). Do you think the Print Culture Historians and conservationists in the world would benefit from a piece of PR like "Slow Fires"?

13) After all his huffing and puffing, Baker comes up with a pretty simple, concise list of recommendations for improving the current state of library affairs. What do you think of the viability of these suggestions- specifically the idea of libraries keeping their discard records public, and the LOC adding more shelve space to hold everything they're sent?

Friday, November 17, 2006

Graphic Novels in Libraries

Graphic Novels in Libraries have been causing a stir according to one recent article. Take a read and see what you think.

http://www.richmondtimesdispatch.com/servlet/Satellite?pagename=RTD/MGArticle/RTD_BasicArticle&s=1045855935241&c=MGArticle&cid=1149191693034&path=!news!vaapwire

Monday, November 13, 2006

Group 1's Annotated Bibliography

Here is our annotated bibliography. It's substantial; the reading list for our class presentation will be much smaller.

~Group 1

A little satire for Monday morning

Here is an article from MSNBC by their "futurist".
http://msnbc.msn.com/id/14823087/?GT1=8717

Sunday, November 12, 2006

Even more discusion questions!

Modeling the Information Seeking of Professionals

1)Does the broadness of the Leckie et. all model help, as the authors propose, to create a over-arching model for all professions and a foundation for more in depth studies in the field of information science, or does it extreme broadness limit its application due to the myriad of other major factors that the authors argued are present at each step of the model? Additonally does this model actually serve to capture the complexity of the information seeking habits of professionals as the authors claim or does it underplay the multiple factors at work?


Opening and Cooperative

2)In his “Cooperative” Chapter Willinsky proposes that both research libraries and scholarly associations and publishers should work together to create and improve online journal repositories like JSTOR, with the research libraries focusing on the “hosting, indexing and archiving of literature” and the scholarly associations and publishers focusing on the “management of peer review, editing, and layout”. Do you think that this, as Willinsky states, would this also help to alleviate some of the costs of creating and maintaining such repositories? Additionally do you think that this would provide research libraries a way to be more actively involved in the development and availability of such repositories?

More Discussion Questions

"Modeling the Information-Seeking of Professionals: A General Model Dervied from Research on Engineers, Health Care Professionals and Lawyers."

1.) What is the danger of trying to generalize about all professionals? What's missing from the model? Would a different set of professionals have yielded at different model?

2.) What use is the model to librarians? How can it be used? Is it different from how others search?

Saturday, November 11, 2006

Discussion Questions 11/13/06

John Willinsky’s “Opening” and “Cooperative”
Group 3

Willinksy makes a fairly thoughtful and passionate case for widening access to scholarly works. Are there any obstacles or issues that you think Willinsky does not consider? Do you think Willinsky does a good job of addressing the arguments he does bring up against open access?

Willinsky mentions Janet Mansbridge's point that the "public good" is a necessary and positive but "dangerous concept", as the idea of what should be done for the good of the public is often created in large part to serve the interests of the powerful. Is it possible to view libraries in this light?

In Chapter One Willinsky uses the metaphor of a lighthouse when explaining the concept of "for the public good"- because a lighthouse illuminates all ships that pass, equally. Why wasn’t a public library used for this metaphor, do they not attempt to serve the same purpose, and illuminate all equally?

Willinsky proposes a publishing and archiving cooperative model as a viable means to provide open access to scholarly publications. Is this model feasible?

Friday, November 10, 2006

Discussion Topics for 10.13.06

Modeling the Information Seeking of Professionals: A General Model Derived From Research on Engineers, Health Care Professionals, and Lawyers

The authors of this article have created a model to help us understand the information seeking behavior of individuals in a variety of professions. Does the model presented lend itself to use within a variety of professions? In the changing corporate world of today, many employees move around the structure of a company when working on a different project. Does the redefinition of work roles or tasks change the way an individual might look for information?

In the sample professions listed, the authors noted that use of libraries was often lacking as the professionals tended to find their information from interpersonal sources. Looking at the barriers listed (time, lack of current resources, no professional library on site), how could a librarian work within the existing fields to get these information needs met? Are there creative ways that could be utilized?

Group 3 Bibliography

History of the Patriot Act as it Pertains to Libraries, Section 215:

Civil Liberties in Times of War. Congressional Digest; Sep2005, Vol. 84 Issue 7, p193-193, 1p

Restrictions on Civil Liberties. Congressional Digest; Sep2005, Vol. 84 Issue 7, p194-195, 2p

USA PATRIOT Act. Congressional Digest; Sep2005, Vol. 84 Issue 7, p196-224, 3p

Wheeler, Maurice B. “The Politics of Access: Libraries and the Fight for Civil Liberties in Post-9/11 America” Radical History Review. 2005.93 (2005): 79-95.
~The author states librarians' concerns about section 215 of the PATRIOT Act within the context of the Bill of Rights and the current national political climate.

"New Bill by Sen. Leahy, Others Seeks to Restore Privacy and Civil Liberties Protections to Patriot Act." US Fed News Service, Including US State News (Mar 8, 2006): n/a. http://proquest.umi.com.ezproxy.library.wisc.edu/pqdweb?did=999763651&Fmt=7&clientId=65345&RQT=309&VName=PQD.

"NEWSMAKER: Straight Answers from Russ Feingold." American Libraries 37, no. 2 (Feb, 2006): 20, http://proquest.umi.com.ezproxy.library.wisc.edu/pqdweb?did=985446681&Fmt=7&clientId=65345&RQT=309&VName=PQD.

"Rep. Degette: American Values Remain at Risk." US Fed News Service, Including US State News (Mar 7, 2006): n/a. http://proquest.umi.com.ezproxy.library.wisc.edu/pqdweb?did=998991151&Fmt=7&clientId=65345&RQT=309&VName=PQD.

~Two of the three readings above are press releases. The third, an interview with Russ Feingold in American Libraries – basically serves the same function: to publicly denounce the PATRIOT Act, and promise constituents that the politicians will keep fighting for civil liberties.

ALA Position:

American Library Association. The USA PATRIOT Act.
http://www.ala.org/ala/washoff/WOissues/civilliberties/theusapatriotact/usapatriotact.htm
~This section of the ALA Website offers information on the PATRIOT Act from librarians’ point of view. It provides a brief overview of the origins and intent of the act, and describes the act’s relevance to libraries and library services. Also, the website provides a relatively detailed account of the act’s various challenges and changes, and gives a few suggestions for further reading and a link to the ALA’s e-advocacy site.

Freedom to Read Act:

Bernie Sanders: Vermont’s Independent Congressman. bernie.house.gov.
~The homepage of Bernie Sanders, the Congressman who introduced the Freedom to Read Bill in response to the Patriot Act; it’s updated regularly, and is a great source of information on impending legislation, as well as a source for other helpful websites.

http://www.ala.org/ala/washoff/WOissues/civilliberties/theusapatriotact/usapatriotact.htm
~This is the URL for the Related Links and Related Files from the ALA site.You need to scroll almost to the bottom to find the list of sources, but a few examples they list are: Guidelines for Librarians on the USA PATRIOT Act, a tip sheet for librarians, and a selected bibliography with citations for articles by the ACLU and others.



Pro-Patriot Act Opinions/ Conservative Librarians


http://chronicle.com/free/v52/i06/06b01201.htm
"The Loneliness of the Conservative Librarian," by David Durant, Gov Docs librarian at East Carolina U. Chronicle of Higher Education, 30 September 2005.

SHUSH: a website for the conservative librarian. Moderator: Gregory McClay, Systems Librarian, Lowell, Mass. Site includes links to conservative librarian blogs. See the link to "Librarians for Victory", a petition with signatures of 75 U.S. librarians.
http://www.shush.ws/


Librarians in the field- Practical Responses, Ethical Questions:

Bowers, Stacey L. "Privacy and Library Records." Journal of Academic Librarianship 32.4 (2006): 377-83.
~This source documents the history of privacy and its challenges in a library setting. It doesn’t focus just on the USA Patriot Act, but also delves into its predecessor in library privacy FISA.

"Civil Liberties in Times of War." Congressional Digest 84.7 (2005): 193-.
~This entire issue of Congressional Digest is dedicated to the topic of “Civil Liberties in Times of War.” A great overall summary of what the law entails is one of the many articles in this issue.

Dawson, Emily-Jane. “Library Ethics and the Problem with Patriotism.” Revolting Librarians Redux. Eds. Katia Roberto and Jessamyn West. North Carolina: McFarland & Co., 2003. 95-100.
~This essay raises a variety of issues concerning patriotism and the USA PATRIOT Act within public library systems and bookstores. Written by a library assistant, this article gives a first hand view of dealing with issues of patriotism in regards to co-workers, bosses, patrons, and government officials.

Flanders, Laura. “Librarians under siege” The Nation. 5 Aug. 2002: Vol.275, Issue. 5.
~Under an obscure provision of the USA Patriot Act, federal agents can obtain a warrant to acquire information about library users. The pressure librarians are under to provide information about users despite their determination to protect reader privacy is discussed.

Foerstel, Herbert. N. Refuge of a Soundrel. Westport: Libraries Unlimited, 2004.
~A vehement attack against the Patriot Act, Foerstel, a librarian, provides an overview of the Patriot Act and its impact on libraries; a recommended read according to Library Journal, Booklist, Libraries and Culture, College & Research Libraries, and Technical Services Quarterly.

Gorman, Michael. "Those Lost Liberties may be Your Own." American Libraries 37.6 (2006): 5-.
~The current ALA president’s response to the USA Patriot Act and what it means.

Minow, Mary. “The USA PATRIOT Act.” Library Journal October 2002: 52-55.
~This article provides background information on the USA PATRIOT Act and offers librarians suggestions for protecting patron privacy. Found at:
http://www.libraryjournal.com/article/CA245044.html

O'Connor, Anahad. "Librarians Win as U.S. Relents on Secrecy Law." New York Times 155.53548 (2006): B1-6.
~A New York Times article about how in the Connecticut case, the judge ruled to allow the libraries to identify themselves as recipients of a request for patron records.

The Patriot Act: Opposing Viewpoints. New York: Greenhaven Press, 2005.
~A collection of essays by various authors’ on subjects related to the Patriot Act, several of which discuss libraries and the field of librarianship in depth, and offer some rather interesting perspectives. Attention is also given to impending legislation, including the proposed Freedom to Read Bill.

Thursday, November 09, 2006

Gaming @ Your Library

I mentioned this in a previous entry, but just found an ALA News Release about a new book about the benefits of gaming. For those of us interested in public and academic libraries, we are certainly going to have to think about this issue.

Press Releases
Chicago, IL, November, 07 2006 -

ALA TechSource is pleased to announce the publication of its latest issue of Library Technology Reports, “Gaming and Libraries: Intersection of Services” by Jenny Levine, librarian, author of the popular The Shifted Librarian blog, and an avid gamer.

Libraries and Gaming Case Studies Numerous detailed examples of what libraries are already doing—including public, school, and academic libraries—provide Levine the springboard to illustrate how librarians can reap positive gains by proactively, creatively, and (above all) affordably integrating gaming into the services and programs already offered at your library.

Read the section “But They're Not Books!” to discover how things look when you turn the question “Why gaming?” on its head.
Focus on educational value as she shows how these “cognitive workouts” are proven to enhance the development of learning and literacy skills.
Get insights into the social value of gaming—an activity that cuts across age, socioeconomic groups, gender, and technical know-how—from “Meet the Gamers.” (Did you know that the biggest group of online gamers is women older than 40?)

Learn how other libraries, with creative planning and little money, have incorporated gaming services for a big return on investment. In addition, Levine briefly looks at the popular and rapidly growing virtual-reality online community Second Life and the library services now being offered there.

http://www.techsource.ala.org/pr/getting-game-your-library.html

Blog mania!

I just found this site, LISZEN, which is a search engine for library blogs (over 500 of them). I haven't played around with it much yet, but it seems potentially useful for all sorts of library-related information-seeking.

Wednesday, November 08, 2006

Group 2 Bibliography

Barack, L. “A Wiki War on Vandals.” School Library Journal 52.5 (2006): 24.

Bates, M. E. “Truth and Fiction on the Web.” Online 30.2 (2006): 64.

Binkley, P. “Wikipedia Grows Up.” Feliciter 52.2 (2006): 59-61.

Effert, Robert. “Wikipedia, the Review." School Library Journal 52.3 (2006): 82-85.

Graff, K. “Wikipedia Will Change the World.” Booklist 102.16 (2006): 76.

“History of Wikipedia.” Wikipedia. 2006. Wikipedia. 4 November 2006 <>.

Ishizuka, K. “The Wikipedia Wars.” School Library Journal 50.11 (2004): 24-5.

McPherson, Keith. “Wikis and Literacy Development.” Teacher Librarian 34.1(2006):
67-71.

Miller, B. X., et. al. “I Want My Wikipedia!” Library Journal 131.6 (2006): 122, 124.

Nicholson, P. J. “The Changing Role of Intellectual Authority.” ARL 247 (2006): 1-5.

Richardson, Will. “WHAT’S A WIKI? A Powerful Collaborative Tool for Teaching and Learning. That's What!” Multimedia and Internet@Schools 12.6 (2005): 17-21.

Rosenzweig, Roy. “ Can History Be Open Source? Wikipedia and the Future of the Past.” Journal of American History 93.1(2006): 117- 147.

Seigenthaler, John. “A False Wikipedia 'Biography.'” Wikipedia Watch. 1 Nov. 2006. .

Shariatmadari, David. “Is a million articles of proof authentic information.” Intermedia 34.3 (2006): 17-19.

Yannie, M. “Wikipedia Watch and Google Watch: http://www.wikipedia-watch.org and http://www.google-watch.org [Web site review].” Journal of Information Ethics 15.1 (2006): 93-4.

Tuesday, November 07, 2006

From the UW-Madison Offices of the Dean of Students: Toward a Bias-Free Campus

As we reflect on the place of the library in the community this week, with regard to all of its normative purposes and diverse patron populations, and as we think about the constitutional results of Tuesday's election in Wisconsin, I would like to remind students that it is official UW-Madison policy to work toward "a bias-free campus." The Offices of the Dean of Students encourages all UW-Madison students to "Explore & Appreciate Diversity" and suggests some good ways of doing so:

Take time to reflect on your own biases and stereotypes. Accept responsibility for your prejudices and behavior.

Broaden your horizons by regularly attending the many lectures, conferences and events that the campus has to offer. Stretch yourself beyond the familiar.

Ask a librarian for the histories and biographies of people different than yourself. Relate their histories and experiences to your own.

Listen to the evening news as if you had a different skin color, sexual orientation or gender. Notice what would be relevant to you.

Listen to music from another culture. Share it with others.

Participate in ongoing training and workshops that focus on eliminating racism, sexism, homophobia and other forms of discrimination.

Attend an event where you are a minority. Take friends along to the many programs at the Multicultural Student Center.

Watch films and TV programs by and about people of different backgrounds and experience.

Report incidents of harassment to an on-call Assistant Dean in Student Advocacy & Judicial Affairs (263-5700 or dean@odos.wisc.edu).

Don't tolerate racist, sexist or homophobic remarks or "jokes." Speak up!

Group 4 Bibliography

Here is our (tenative) final list of sources for the "One City" topic. We went for a variety of viewpoints (big picture vs. case study of one city's program), variety of sources (more professional or academic vs. stuff for the general public) and a combination of digital and print sources.


Case Study Presentation - "One City, One Book" Bibliography

Cole, John Y. "One Book Projects Grow in Popularity." Library of Congress Information Bulletin. Vol. 65, no. 1 (01//, 2006): 30-31.

The article discusses the growing popularity of the One Book community reading promotion project in the U.S. Usually organized by libraries, the One Book project brings together readers and authors to discuss a book. It started in 1998 through Nancy Pearl, executive director of the Washington Center for the Book in the Seattle Public Library in Seattle, Washington. In June 2002, there were 63 One Book projects in 30 states. This figure jumped to 350 in December 2005, spanning 50 states.

Herrera, Luis. "Toward a Literate Nation." Public Libraries 43, no. 1 ([YEAR]): 9-9. Library, Information Science & Technology Abstracts, EBSCOhost (accessed October 30, 2006).

This one deals with the literacy in America and the role the public library plays using programs like OCOB.

Shulevitz, Judith." The Close Reader; You Read Your Book and I'll Read Mine". New York Times, May 19, 2002.

This article is somewhat more cynical about the one book one city program. Ms. Shulevitz prefers Oprah's book club because it is simply Oprah choosing books she likes without any agenda of community benefit. The author feels that because each book is selected to attract as many readers as possible while offending no one, the choices will be mediocre. This author does not think that reading literature is good for a society. She has an interesting take on reading, and not about "coming together" but of "breaking apart" as beneficial.

Van Dyke, Debby. “Building a Community of Readers: A One Book Program.” Library Media Connection, v. 23, no. 5, p. 20-22, Feb. 2005.

Author talks about her experiences launching a one book, one school program. Discusses subjects to be taken into consideration when implementing such a plan. Also talks about what she found troublesome and wishes she had considered before the implementation.

http://www.loc.gov/loc/cfbook/one-book.html

“One Book” Reading Promotion Projects . Center for the Book: Library of Congress.
This website lists past and current “One Book,
One City” participants by location, date, and what book each city chose for that time period. It also lists the most popular books and authors chosen overall.

http://talk.greatbooks.org/tcr/block14

Reading Melancholy in One Book Cities By Marta Segal Block

A frank and critical analysis of Chicago's One City program from a reader who thinks that less depressing or boring books might be more useful for the program's goals.

www.ala.org/ala/ppo/onebookguide.pdf

"Planning Your Community Wide Read"
A booklet compiled by the Public Programs Office of the
ALA to help librarians and novices set up a community wide read.

Monday, November 06, 2006

Group Five Bibliography

Our topic is "Big Box Coffeshop Bookstores". We started with a pretty broad list for our preliminary bibliography this week. We'll prune it down a good deal by the time final bibliographies are due.

http://www.giesler.net/Bibliography.doc

Sunday, November 05, 2006

Vending Machine Books

I read this article in London Transport's free daily newspaper, Metro: Tuesday, Oct. 31

Book Rush: Instant books could be printed and sold in vending machines thanks to a technological breakthrough. A printer has been designed to spew out 1,000 pages a minute. The best machines can currently produce only 50 pages a minute and are limited by the size of their printer head. The new JeTrix machine has a head designed to be as big as the page and can eject all the ink in one go. The team in Israel say it could be on the market in two years.

I don't know how reliable this information is or who the so-called "team in Israel" may be, but nevertheless, I thought this was a very interesting development in book publishing. Also, would this technology be used exclusively for books or would it include magazines and newspapers?

Saturday, November 04, 2006

Discussion Topics for 11/6

Long Overdue: A fresh look at public and leadership attitudes about libraries in the 21st century

Is the library's top rating as a public service representative of the service's success or does it represent a lower standard held for a service perceived to be less vital? People claim to value libraries but they do not receive much support; they are not seen as vital.

Should libraries be involved in implementing standards, rules and measures for the internet, since it is perceived as a service they are obligated to supply or are they doing enough by simply offering it as a free resource to the general public?

What explains libraries vulnerablity to budget cuts even in the so-called "information age?"

The Public Agenda study lists four services that respondents indicated they would appreciate, but are rarely offered. Those services are teen activities, adult literacy development, government information services and public computer access. All four are undoubtedly worthy of time and money but resources are typically limited. Of the four which service or services should get priority and why?

What are some possible reasons why people who rarely use libraries still see them (or at least answer that they still see them) as important to their communities?

In Madison only the Central Branch library is open on Sundays, and this branch is not even open on Sundays in the summer. In light of our class discussion and the Public Agenda article what do you think about this?

Looking at the graph on page 33 "Top Community Priorities" how can you imagine the public library best filling these needs? Have you heard of innovative programs that correspond to these priorities?

Differences Between Real and Virtual Libraries by Thomas Mann

Is it in the interest of knowledge for the internet to be organized as a librart or does this restrict it as a conduit to free publication?

Could a virtual library that adheres to all of Mann's guidelines perform to the same level as the libraries it mimics?

Mann makes the point in his article that computer cataloging is inefficient and unnweildy compared to traditional methods available through so-called "real" libraries. In the eight years since this article was written computer cataloging has grown by leaps and bounds and search technology has been greatly redefined. Does Mann's criticism hold true?

Mann believes that readers will always feel more comfortable reading books that are published in a traditional paper format (that is, if readers are reading as opposed to searching for information). Do you think he is right?

Remember Kevin Kelly's article "Scan this Book!"? Who do you think makes better arguments, Mann or Kelly? Who do you think will end up being right about the future of books? Who do you hope will be right and why?

On page 134 Mann states that copyrights are the solution to the problems faces by libraries in reagrds to the internet; looking at things like Google's book scanning project does it still seem like copyrights hold any power over controlling information or are they simply a roadbump in the road to information?

According to Mann there will always be some sort of restraint on access to information, based on what, who and where restrictions. Is there a way to eliminate all these restrictions and if not which would be the msot inclusive restriction to have in place?

Thursday, November 02, 2006

Science of the Internet

For those of us interested in the growing amount of information that is available electronically, scientists are now prepared to study the World Wide Web in an official way:

A Science of the Web Begins

From the article: "The initiative hopes to tackle a number of key questions: What features of current Web protocols make the system work? How do Web users represent the meaning, or semantics, of Web content? Can developers exploit the statistical patterns and distribution of content to understand meaning and relevance? What properties of the Web result in social effects? How do users address online privacy protection, intellectual property rights and security? What trends could fragment the Web?"

Reading At Risk

Going along with our discussion of literacy, I found a survey conducted by the National Endowment for the Arts which doesn't give us very sunny news. Below is a link and the first paragraph of the Preface in order to spark some interest.

http://www.nea.gov/pub/ReadingAtRisk.pdf

Reading at Risk is not a report that the National Endowment for the Arts is happy to issue. This comprehensive survey of American literary reading presents a detailed but bleak assessment of the decline of reading’s role in the nation’s culture. For the first time in modern history, less than half of the adult population now reads literature, and these trends reflect a larger decline in other sorts of reading. Anyone who loves literature or values the cultural, intellectual, and political importance of active and engaged literacy in American society will respond to this report with grave concern.

Wednesday, November 01, 2006

a radio station online mailbag as a search engine?

So my fav online radio station is called "the current" - its the Minnesota Public Radio alternative pop radio service.

Whilist perusing the site today and listening to the station, I found the mailbag and noticed that people were asking MPR some normal and not so normal questions - and the station was actually answering back, posting the most interesting questions and answers online. Take a look for yourself at some of the questions asked by Minnesotans and by listners around the world. Goto http://minnesota.publicradio.org/your_voice/mailbag to check it out and ask a question yourself - like maybe what ever happened to the early 90's Minneapolis band Zuzu's Petals? I know I'm seriously curious.