- 1 BiblioNews.org -- Beyond Books: News, Literacy and Democracy in America's Libraries
BiblioNews.org -- Beyond Books: News, Literacy and Democracy in America's Libraries
Boston, April 6-7, 2011 at the MIT Center for Future Civic Media
A one-and-one-half day convening (Wed. afternoon/evening, all day Thursday) preceeding the National Conference for Media Reform (Fri-Sun) in Boston. Location: Cambridge, Mass., at the MIT Center for Future Civic Media, Bartos Theatre and Building E15 Lower Atrium .
To develop the concept of libraries as community information centers beyond books and facilitating citizen journalism. Librarians want to expand public access to accurate information, particularly local news. So do journalists. Each is facing diminishing resources.
How can libraries, educational institutions and reporters/editors collaborate using the web to foster the values, principles and purposes of journalism?
How might public, university and school libraries expand their role as community information centers to inspire and perhaps equip citizens who want to practice and support the values, principles and purposes of journalism?
- The latest national data from the Institute of Museum and Library Services show that library visits and circulation climbed nearly 20% from 1999 to 2008. Since then, experts say, technology has continued to drive in-person visits, circulation and usage.
- Now, the digital sphere is expanding: 82% of America's more than 16,000 public libraries have Wi-Fi up from 37% four years ago, according to the American Library Association. A growing number of libraries are launching mobile websites and smart-phone applications.
- The John S. & James L. Knight Foundation is backing initiatives to improve information access via libraries. The Knight Commission on the Information Needs of Communities includes a specific recommendation about libraries and makes repeated references to them. Followup research for the commission cites the increasing civic-information role of libraries.
- In Oakland, Calif., the legal daily newspaper partnered with the city and the West Oakland Public Library to install a community-news center. PDF-DOWNLOAD BACKGROUNDER
- The Seattle/Puget Sound Civic Communications Commons cites the "vital work of libraries as conveners, connectors, and providers of information and civic space," in its convening work.
- A 2007 study by the Pew Center found that Young adults are heaviest library users, even though they are also on the web.The Pew Internet and American Life Project and the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign conducted the study jointly. One anecdotal finding: Libraries are increasingly creating social spaces within their walls. Pew's Lee Rainie tracks and speaks on library usage.
Collaborators so far(alpha order): Joe Bergantino (New England Center for Investigative Reporting), Jessica Durkin (New America Foundation fellow), Mike Fancher (RJI / Seattle Times-retired), Fabrice Florin (NewsTrust), Marsha Iverson (ALA board and King County libraries), Library Leadership & Management Assn. (LLMA), Alan Inouye (director, Office of Info Tech Policy, ALA), Nancy Kranich (Rutgers Univ., chair ALA Center for Public Life), Lorrie LeJeune and Andrew Whitacre (MIT C4FCM), Leigh Montgomery (Christian Science Monitor librarian), Donna Nicely (Knight Commission/Nashville Public Library), Patrick Phillips (Vineyard Voice), Josh Stearns (FreePress.net), Colin Rhinesmith (Univ. of Illinois), Bill Densmore, (New England News Forum/Media Giraffe Project).
Wednesday -- Convene for afternoon networking session about 3 p.m. on Wed., April 6. Buffet supper at MIT, then an evening panel/program. Thursday -- Continental breakfast at 8:30 a.m.; program start at 9 a.m., run through 5 p.m. with snack breaks and box lunch. Birds-of-a-feather Dutch Treat (you pay) dinner arrangements facilitated.
SUGGESTED COST (assuming some sponsor underwriting)
- Wed/Thurs. -- $75.00
- Thurs. no lunch -- $45.00
- Thurs. inc. lunch -- $60.00
Inclusive registration with Free Press
- Through Jan. 14: $175.00. (we pay FP $100)
- After Jan. 14: $225.00 (we pay FP $150)
EXAMPLES OF INTEREST
"The Office for Information Technology Policy (OITP) at the ALA Washington Office is working on a policy brief on the evolving newspaper industry and the implications for libraries. In a number of communities, the ability of newspapers to provide local community information is declining. At the same time, informal sources of local information are rapidly increasing. What are libraries doing to foster improved access to community information in the context of these changes?"
- Empowering patrons to create their own news and media at the grassroots level. Such endeavors might include enhancing patrons’ skills in creating do-it-yourself forms of media using technology tools and resources available at the library
- Generating news-like content via community documentation projects hosted at a library
- Partnering with other like-minded organizations to create news collectives, non-profits, or citizen journalism projects
(Atrium is bigger than photo suggests)
- Topix.net RSS feed for library news
- Topix.net search on "libraries and democracy"
- Washington Post speaker sees libraries/news link (Dec. 2009)
- "The Library in the New Age," (by Robert Darnton, Harvard library director, in the New York Review of Books, June, 2008)
- Libraries and journalism: Why not more connected?
- Libraries, journalism and community informatics (by Taylor Willingham)
- Could we have a national digital library?
- "The Fall and Rise of Libraries," Amanda Korman in The Berkshire Eagle, Jan. 2, 2010 (a)