Elizabeth May, MP for Saanich-Gulf Islands and Leader of the Green Party, investigates the legality of the recent culling of federal government libraries and collections:
The Act covering publications and records held by the Government of Canada is the Library and Archives of Canada Act. In reviewing it, it seems clear the act was not followed. The Library and Archives of Canada Act exists to protect and preserve our ‘documentary heritage’. The Act’spreamble makes it clear that Parliament recognizes the importance of protecting knowledge as a critical part of any democratic society.
The Act established a set of protections for all government records held by any and all departments. The mandate to protect and maintain the documentary heritage of Canada is held by the Librarian and Archivist for Canada. The current Librarian and Archist is Hervé Déry—appointed in May 2013 on an interim basis.
According to the Act,
12. (1) No government or ministerial record, whether or not it is surplus property of a government institution, shall be disposed of, including by being destroyed, without the written consent of the Librarian and Archivist …..
Under s. 16, all publications (even if surplus) must be moved to the care and control of the Librarian and Archivist.
I decided to phone the Librarian and Archivist of Canada, who has a very clear responsibility to protect the ‘documentary heritage’ of Canadians. It took over a week to get the current interim Librarian and Archivist on the phone. And when I did, it turned out two officials from Heritage Canada were in the room as ‘observers.’ Mr Déry confirmed that he has not provided any written authorizations for the destruction of documents. He claimed it is none of his business if records, books and research are destroyed as it is in the ‘discretion of the ministers.’
My library is introducing an e-reader lending program. The price of e-readers has dropped such that this is practical for a library in a community of our size. This is a good article about our new program, however it does adopt the cliche of libraries being strangers to new technology.
Library embracing new technology with e-readers
By SHERI REGNIER January 30, 2014 · Updated 11:48 AM
(Librarian Sam King demonstrated the versatility of the Trail and District Public Library’s new e-readers set for community circulation in a few months. Options on the portable device include large text and with the tap of a finger, a page can be bookmarked or turned. / Sheri Regnier)
How a future library will look is anyone’s guess.
But in this digital age, a library might become less about lending a book and more about transmitting text through less traditional sources.
The Trail and District Public Library reports an exponential increase of tech-savvy users in the last few years, aided by the addition of 12 public access computers, along with the circulation of electronic materials increasing by 63 per cent.
As local library users become more familiar with digitized information, the modern way to access materials through e-readers could mean books, CDs and DVDs become an antiquated resource for future readers.
The current 5,000-square-foot Trail facility is packed with countless tactile resources, so in response to not just a lack of space, but to keep up with the times, the library has added 10 e-readers to its stock of portable devices, and tens of thousands of books to its electronic library.
I came across this blog post in the Chronicle of Higher Education (http://chronicle.com/section/Home/5)
How to Index Your Book (And Why I’ll Never Do It Again)
In it, the author describes her steps in indexing her own book and how she has come to the conclusion that it is worth the cost to an author to pay for the services of a professional indexer.
The author also sums up why she feels indexes are still necessary for documents electronic or otherwise:
Despite the fact that books are increasingly becoming searchable in their electronic formats, the metadata that’s provided by a good index can have a great influence over how the book is discovered, and how it’s used. A good index is more than just an alphabetical list of all the text’s proper nouns and their locations; it’s a way of thinking about the ideas within the text that can guide a reader to the sections they most need to consult.
Overdrive is repeating it’s Big Library Read e-book program. This time it’s a J e-book
As part of the Big Library Read program, your library will be featuring “Nancy Clancy, Super Sleuth” in both eBook and audiobook formats from September 16th – 30th. During this two-week reading period, Book 1 from the Nancy Clancy series will be available for every patron that wishes to read it—no holds, no waitlists.
By participating in the Big Library Read, you can join a global movement of passionate readers and library patrons who support the availability of eBooks and audiobooks at your local branch.