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E.L. Doctorow Awarded American Fiction Prize

“E. L. Doctorow, author of such critically acclaimed novels as “Ragtime,” “World’s Fair,” “Billy Bathgate,” “The March” and his current novel, “Andrew’s Brain,” is the second recipient of the Library of Congress Prize for American Fiction. He will receive the award during this year’s National Book Festival, scheduled for Aug. 30 at the Walter E. Washington Convention Center in Washington, D.C. The annual Library of Congress Prize for American Fiction is meant to honor an American literary writer whose body of work is distinguished not only for its mastery of the art but for its originality of thought and imagination. The award seeks to commend strong, unique, enduring voices that—throughout long, consistently accomplished careers—have told us something about the American experience. Winning the award last year was author Don DeLillo.” (via Library of Congress Blog)

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NLM and Wellcome Library Establish Agreement to Make 150 Years of Biomedical Journals Freely Available Online

“Representatives of the US National Library of Medicine (NLM), a component of the National Institutes of Health, and the Wellcome Trust recently signed a memorandum of understanding to work together to make thousands of complete back issues of historically-significant biomedical journals freely available online. The terms of the MOU include a donation of £750,000 ($1.2 million) to the NLM that will support coordination of the three-year project to scan original materials from NLM’s collection at the article level, and Wellcome’s work to secure copyright clearances and permissions for electronic deposit from publishers. NLM will undertake conservation of the original material to ensure its preservation for future generations.” (via NLM)

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SFPL Partners with Hoopla Digital During National Library Week to Give Patrons Online and Mobile Access to Free Movies, TV Shows, Music and Audiobooks

“San Francisco Public Library today announced public availability of thousands of movies, television shows, music and audiobooks, all available for mobile and online access through a new partnership with hoopla digital (hoopladigital.com). The announcement comes in the wake of National Library Week (April 13 – 19, 2014), a national observance, celebrating the contributions of libraries and librarians, while promoting library use and support.” (via SFPL News Releases)

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Authors Guild asks US court to rule against Google

“Saying Google Inc. is stealing business from online book retailers, the Authors Guild asked a federal appeals court Friday to reinstate its lawsuit contending that the Internet giant is violating copyright laws with its massive book digitization project. The Guild filed papers with the 2nd U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals in Manhattan, saying that Google’s effort to create the world’s largest digital library was violating the rights of authors and stifling competition in the busy Internet book sales market. Google declined to comment on the Authors Guild’s effort to reverse a November ruling in favor of the Mountain View, Calif.-based company.” (via AP)

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Libraries are dying? Think again

“Like many visitors in Seattle, Glenn Nagel found himself in the city trying to avoid the rain. After wandering around, he eventually made his way to the Seattle Public Library to escape the dreary weather. Little did he know that stepping into Seattle’s Central Library would spark his curiosity. The library’s geometric glass and steel interior with its sprawling “books spiral” grabbed ahold of him. “It’s just an incredible building,” he said, still remembering his awe during that 2013 trip. “I spent an hour and a half just taking pictures, and while doing that, I was getting the idea that I should visit other libraries.” (via CNN.com)

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Multnomah County Library to hire security manager in response to rising rate of incidents

“The Multnomah County Library, with its mission to be a haven for everyone, for years has resisted following other urban libraries in ramping up security. But when windows at downtown Portland’s Central Library are broken twice in a single week, something has to change. That’s the story Central Library director Dave Ratliff told this week, when he asked the Multnomah County Board of Commissioners for permission to hire a safety and security manager for the library system. The new hire will help develop a set of security policies and procedures for all 19 library branches. Ratliff said the manager will focus on “preventing things from happening, rather than just responding after the fact.” (via OregonLive.com)

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Oxford Public Library finding vital new roles

“The kids come in their PJ’s. They curl up with stuffed toys and munch on popcorn. And, while their parents are watching a grown-ups’ movie at the Granada Theater next door, youngsters at the Oxford, Nebraska, Public Library are enjoying a G-rated kid-friendly movie on their own big screen, helping the library fulfill its mission to be a vital, vibrant educational, entertainment and social hub of the community. “We’ve done movie night all winter. It has become very popular,” says library director Danielle Burns, who has, with her teen board, board of directors and “Friends of the Library,” created other new programs and activities that are keeping the public library in residents’ minds and hearts.” (via McCook Daily Gazette)

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‘Captain Underpants’ doesn’t sit well with some

“The potty humor of “Captain Underpants” children’s books and the mature exploration of race and family violence by Nobel laureate Toni Morrison in “The Bluest Eye” would seem to have little in common. But among some parents, educators and other members of the general public who worry about what books are stocked at their local libraries, the works fall into the same category — they’re just too offensive and should be restricted or removed from the shelves. The American Library Association published its annual “State of the Libraries” report Sunday, which included its list of works most frequently “challenged” last year at schools and libraries.” (via AP)

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Queens Library Controversy Prompts Pols to Introduce Reform Bill

“Following the recent high-profile controversy surrounding spending and oversight at Queens Borough Public Library, a group of elected officials gathered on the steps of Borough Hall last week to announce the introduction of legislation that they said would reform the library’s Board of Trustees and overall governance at one of the busiest library systems in the country. The move last Thursday came after reports that Queens Library CEO Thomas Galante made a six-figure salary while jobs were being outsourced. Additionally, reports have highlighted that expansive reconstruction projects were also being process around that time.

The embattled Galante, who earns nearly $400,000 annually, has also come under fire for part-time work he does with Long Island’s Elmont School District. There, he earns about $100,000 a year. (via The Forum Newsgroup)

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In Prince William budget process, focus is on libraries

“At Tuesday night’s public hearing on Prince William County’s fiscal 2015 budget, a parade of representatives of various county services, including firefighters, nurses and librarians, lined up to tell county supervisors why they need more money next year.A second line of residents formed to say that they didn’t want to pay higher taxes. The back-and-forth discussions have centered most recently on the county’s libraries, after other meetings that focused on schools and public safety.” (via The Washington Post)

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