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HarperCollins UK, now on Scribd

“Hail, Britannia! We’re excited to welcome HarperCollins UK to Scribd. Our UK readers now have access to some of our all-time favorites, including Fahrenheit 451, Play It As It Lays, and The Devil Wears Prada, along with more than 3,000 others, all ready to read right now. Here’s what Charlie Redmayne, CEO of HarperCollins Publishers UK, has to say: “We are delighted to be part of this new route to market for our backlist titles. This new business model offers excellent value for book lovers, while allowing HarperCollins authors to enjoy extended reach, increased discovery and improved royalty streams.” (via The Scribd Blog)

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Mayoral donor spared the ax in Queens library scandal

“Mayor de Blasio and Borough President Melinda Katz spared only one Thomas Galante backer when they axed eight other trustees who had supported the disgraced Queens Public Library honcho — and it turns out that lucky survivor has ties to both pols. De Blasio and Katz didn’t lay a finger on Mary Ann Mattone, 66, who happens to be the wife of developer Joseph Mattone, and whose family has donated tens of thousands of dollars to Democratic races, including those of Katz and Hizzoner. Mattone’s son, Carl, 55, even headlined a Katz fund-raiser in Douglaston, Queens, this summer.” (via New York Post)

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Even wired tribal libraries are lagging behind on tech

“As much as some places in the United States have struggled to get good, affordable, accessible Internet connectivity, one type of spot on the map has struggled even more than most: tribal lands. Broadband deployment in the whole of the U.S. stands at about 65 percent, the Federal Communications Commission found a few years ago, but on tribal lands the official rate is just 10 percent, with “anecdotal evidence suggest[ing] that actual usage rates may be as low as 5 to 8 percent.” (via The Washington Post)

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Google Wants to Save Our Schools—And Hook a New Generation of Users

“The old “dog ate my homework excuse” is about to become a thing of the past. And kids will have Google to thank. The search giant has just released Classroom, a free tool that allows teachers to do everything from assigning projects to collecting and grading assignments, all online. Classroom uses Google’s own products such as Docs and Drive to manage and organize the often chaotic classroom workflow.” (via WIRED)

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Queens Library carrying out expensive probe of leaks about director Thomas Galante’s salary, spending

“The Queens Library is spending big bucks to investigate leaks of confidential information about board meetings to the Daily News. Lawyers for six former trustees suing to get their positions back after they were kicked out by Mayor de Blasio and Queens Borough President Melinda Katz revealed in court papers the library has retained a high-powered former federal judge to probe leaks that led to a series of stories in The News about library director Thomas Galante’s $392,000 salary and his free-spending ways. Brooklyn Federal Judge Roslynn Mauskopf recused herself Monday from presiding over the suit because she is a close personal friend of the former federal judge, Barbara Jones, who served on the bench in the Southern District of New York for 16 years before leaving to become a partner at a white shoe law firm.” (via NY Daily News)

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Omaha’s proposed budget would cut funding for libraries

“If you’ve been patiently waiting for a library copy of a best-seller like “The Fault in Our Stars,” the City of Omaha’s proposed budget for next year might come with some bad news. The plan headed to the City Council for a public hearing Tuesday comes with a cut for the city’s libraries; the department’s $13.1 million budget is down about 5 percent from last year. To avoid cutting staff or library hours, officials have plans to reduce the library’s materials budget — which means fewer opportunities to buy new books, e-books, DVDs and other materials, and longer wait times for some of the most popular titles.” (via Omaha.com)

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Detroit library could be site of another Batman v Superman shoot

“Access to parts of the Detroit Library’s main branch was limited Friday because of what library personnel said were preparations for the filming of a scene for a major movie production. The 149-year-old library’s ornate third floor will be the site of more Detroit filming for “Batman v Superman,” security guards told patrons as they turned them away from elevators and staircases Friday.” (via MLive.com)

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Proposed Dallas budget would cut cops, boost streets and libraries

“In a rare decision during a nonrecession year, Dallas’ city manager is proposing a slight reduction in the number of police officers next fiscal year. Under the proposed budget unveiled Friday by City Manager A.C. Gonzalez, the Police Department’s sworn ranks would shrink by about 35 through attrition. That modest reduction — the force has more than 3,500 officers — is part of a broader effort to shave the department’s budget and use the savings to pay for other services that have shrunk in recent years, Gonzalez said.” The beneficiaries would include libraries, streets and animal services.” (via Dallas Morning News)

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How Target is Infiltrating Public Schools to Build Customers for Life

“I am the teacher-librarian in one of two San Francisco school libraries remodeled by the big-box chain Target, in partnership with the Heart of America Foundation (HOA). HOA, which coordinates corporate volunteer programs focused on literacy, provides a few different options, including the one Target picked: the READesign® Library Makeover Program. On its website, HOA promises to handle all the details for the sponsoring partner, making the experience simple but meaningful: “As soon as we know your desired market, we do the rest.” (via Alternet)

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This Librarian Is Not Impressed With Your Digital, No-Books Library

“I’m young for a librarian — 34 in a field where the median age is over 50. It should go without saying then that I’m not the least bit afraid of technology. Digital tools make me far more productive at what I do. However, as a member of the only profession dedicated to mastering, or at very least thinking about, the epistemology of all human discourses, I can tell you that books on a shelf arranged by the Dewey Decimal System (or Library of Congress Classification or UDC or Bliss or any other well-developed scheme) are an essential and invaluable architecture of human discovery and understanding.” (via NextCity)

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