215: William Ottens

Steve chats with William Ottens, author of Librarian Tales: Funny, Strange, and Inspiring Dispatches from the Stacks, about his path to librarianship, starting Librarian Problems on Tumblr way back when, and fun / maddening librarian stereotypes.

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William Ottens is a librarian and the creator of the library-centric Librarian Problems Tumblr. Described by Library Journal‘s Tumblr-in-Chief, Molly McArdle, as the GIF-king of all librarian tumblrs, William’s Librarian Problems blog pairs common librarian situations, frustrations, and stereotypes with animated reaction GIFs. His public library experience includes work in reference, administration, cataloging, and collection development. He served as Director of the Oskaloosa Public Library in Oskaloosa, Iowa from 2012 to 2015, and is currently a Youth Services Associate with the Mid-Continent Public Library in Kansas City, MO.

SHOW NOTES:

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Librarian Tales: Funny, Strange, and Inspiring Dispatches from the Stacks

214: A Librarian’s Guide to Engaging Families in Learning

Steve chats with Elena Lopez, Bharat Mehra, and Maggie Caspe, editors of A Librarian’s Guide to Engaging Families in Learning, about how they first got involved with libraries, the benefits of family engagement, and adapting in times of crisis.

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M. Elena Lopez is an independent researcher whose work focuses on the ecology of learning, which includes the home, school, and community. She has published extensively on family and community engagement in learning and has served on the Mountain View (CA) Library Board.

Bharat Mehra is a professor and EBSCO Endowed Chair in Social Justice in the School of Library and Information Studies at the University of Alabama. Among his many research interests are diversity and inclusion advocacy, intercultural communication and action, social justice in library and information science, community-engaged scholarship, and critical and cross-cultural studies.

Margaret Caspe is a senior research consultant with NAFSCE who focuses on how families, early childhood programs, schools, and communities support children’s learning. Her work has appeared in Public Library Quarterly, Early Childhood Research Quarterly, School Community Journal, Young Children, and Childhood Education.

SPONSORS:

Syndetics Unbound, from ProQuest and LibraryThing
Syndetics Unbound helps public and academic libraries enrich their catalogs and discovery systems with high-interest elements, including cover images, summaries, author profiles, similar books, reviews, and more. Syndetics Unbound encourages serendipitous discovery and higher collection usage, and was recently awarded Platinum distinction in the LibraryWorks 2021 Modern Library Awards. To learn more about Syndetics Unbound, visit Syndetics.com. While there, be sure to visit their “News” tab to check out the Syndetics Unbound Blog for news and analysis, including a break-down of 2020’s most popular titles in public and academic libraries.

SHOW NOTES:

A Librarian’s Guide to Engaging Families in Learning
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213: Meredith Farkas – Slow Librarianship

Steve chats with Meredith Farkas, faculty librarian at Portland Community College in Oregon, about her path to librarianship, the concept of slow librarianship, avoiding techno-saviorism, and why she ended her long-running American Libraries column.

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Meredith Farkas (she/her) is a faculty librarian at Portland Community College in Oregon, a perpetual beginner, and a recovering workaholic. From 2007-2021, she wrote the “In Practice” column for American Libraries, focusing on accessible technologies, collaboration, values-driven work, antiracism, and reflective practice. She has also authored the blog Information Wants to be Free since 2004. Meredith was honored in 2009 with the LITA/Library Hi Tech award for Outstanding Communication in Library and Information Technology, and in 2014 with the ACRL Instruction Section Innovation Award. She’s been in many different leadership and management roles in her career, but her favorite role is working with students and faculty as an instruction librarian.

SPONSOR:

Syndetics Unbound, from ProQuest and LibraryThing
Syndetics Unbound helps public and academic libraries enrich their catalogs and discovery systems with high-interest elements, including cover images, summaries, author profiles, similar books, reviews, and more. Syndetics Unbound encourages serendipitous discovery and higher collection usage, and was recently awarded Platinum distinction in the LibraryWorks 2021 Modern Library Awards. To learn more about Syndetics Unbound, visit Syndetics.com. While there, be sure to visit their “News” tab to check out the Syndetics Unbound Blog for news and analysis, including a break-down of 2020’s most popular titles in public and academic libraries.

SHOW NOTES:

Information Wants To Be Free
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212: Donald Cohen

Steve chats with Donald Cohen, co-author of The Privatization of Everything: How the Plunder of Public Goods Transformed America and How We Can Fight Back, about how he defines privatization, why public goods are vital to a functioning democracy, public-private partnerships that work, and what individuals can do to fight back against privatization.

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Donald Cohen is the founder and executive director of In the Public Interest (ITPI,)  a national research and policy center that studies public goods and services.  His opinion pieces and articles have appeared in the New York Times, Reuters, the Los Angeles Times, The San Diego Union-Tribune, The New York Daily News, The New Republic, The American Prospect, The Nation and other online and print outlets.  He’s the co-author of The Privatization of Everything: How the Plunder of Public Goods Transformed America and How We Can Fight Back, out November 23, 2021.

SPONSORS:

EveryLibrary
This episode is sponsored today by EveryLibrary, the national political action committee for libraries. EveryLibrary helps support the funding formula for public and school libraries so our public institutions can employ great people. You can see more about their pro-bono support for libraries on the ballot and school librarians in crisis at everylibrary.org and SaveSchoolLibrarians.org.

Syndetics Unbound, from ProQuest and LibraryThing
Syndetics Unbound helps public and academic libraries enrich their catalogs and discovery systems with high-interest elements, including cover images, summaries, author profiles, similar books, reviews, and more. Syndetics Unbound encourages serendipitous discovery and higher collection usage, and was recently awarded Platinum distinction in the LibraryWorks 2021 Modern Library Awards. To learn more about Syndetics Unbound, visit Syndetics.com. While there, be sure to visit their “News” tab to check out the Syndetics Unbound Blog for news and analysis, including a break-down of 2020’s most popular titles in public and academic libraries.

SHOW NOTES:

The Privatization of Everything: How the Plunder of Public Goods Transformed America and How We Can Fight Back
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211: Shannon M. Oltmann

Steve chats with Shannon M. Oltmann, author of Practicing Intellectual Freedom in Libraries, about the definition of intellectual freedom, why intellectual freedom is important to the library profession, how to handle materials challenges, and how intellectual freedom overlaps with the right to privacy.

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Shannon M. Oltmann is an Associate Professor in the School of Information Science at the University of Kentucky. She obtained her Ph.D. from Indiana University. Her research interests include information ethics, censorship, intellectual freedom, information policy, public libraries, privacy, and qualitative research methods. Oltmann is the Editor of the Journal of Intellectual Freedom and Privacy and on the Editorial Board for Library Quarterly. She recently published a book, Practicing Intellectual Freedom in Libraries. She has presented her research at academic conferences such as the Information Ethics Roundtable, the Annual Conference of the Association for Information Science & Technology, the iConference, and the International Congress on Qualitative Inquiry. Her work has been published in the Journal of the American Society for Information Science and Technology, Library Quarterly, Public Libraries Quarterly, Collection Management, Libri, and Library and Information Science Research.

SPONSORS:

Book Buddies: Ivy Lost and Found, from Candlewick Press
Ivy Lost and Found, the first of a charming new early chapter book series about library toys and the children who borrow them, written by Newbery Honoree Cynthia Lord and illustrated by Stephanie Graegin. In a starred review, Booklist called Ivy Lost and Found “an engaging story of insecurity overcome by hop, courage, and love.” Ivy is the library’s newest book buddy —a toy that can be checked out just like a book—but she’d rather go back to being what she was before: the librarian’s favorite childhood doll.  So when Fern—a child with a new stepfamily who also wishes she could go back to the way things were—takes Ivy home, they embark on an adventure together that helps both of them find confidence and belonging in their changing worlds. Ivy Lost and Found is available now, and look for upcoming books in the Book Buddies series coming in Spring 2022!

Syndetics Unbound, from ProQuest and LibraryThing
Syndetics Unbound helps public and academic libraries enrich their catalogs and discovery systems with high-interest elements, including cover images, summaries, author profiles, similar books, reviews, and more. Syndetics Unbound encourages serendipitous discovery and higher collection usage, and was recently awarded Platinum distinction in the LibraryWorks 2021 Modern Library Awards. To learn more about Syndetics Unbound, visit Syndetics.com. While there, be sure to visit their “News” tab to check out the Syndetics Unbound Blog for news and analysis, including a break-down of 2020’s most popular titles in public and academic libraries.

SHOW NOTES:

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Practicing Intellectual Freedom in Libraries

210: Paul Signorelli

Steve chats with Paul Signorelli, author of Change the World Using Social Media, about his background in libraries, why librarians should be activists, avoiding the traps of negativity and leveraging social media for good, and his contributions to the T is for Training podcast.

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Paul Signorelli, author of Change the World Using Social Media (Rowman & Littlefield, January 2021), is an Arizona State University ShapingEDU Storyteller-in-Residence and serves on the organizing committee of ShapingEDU’s “Connecting for Work & Learning” universal broadband access initiative. He earned his MLIS from UNT in 2009. Paul can be reached at paul@paulsignorelli.com.

SPONSORS:

Book Buddies: Ivy Lost and Found, from Candlewick Press
Ivy Lost and Found
, the first of a charming new early chapter book series about library toys and the children who borrow them, written by Newbery Honoree Cynthia Lord and illustrated by Stephanie Graegin. In a starred review, Booklist called Ivy Lost and Found “an engaging story of insecurity overcome by hop, courage, and love.” Ivy is the library’s newest book buddy —a toy that can be checked out just like a book—but she’d rather go back to being what she was before: the librarian’s favorite childhood doll.  So when Fern—a child with a new stepfamily who also wishes she could go back to the way things were—takes Ivy home, they embark on an adventure together that helps both of them find confidence and belonging in their changing worlds. Ivy Lost and Found is available now, and look for upcoming books in the Book Buddies series coming in Spring 2022!

Syndetics Unbound, from ProQuest and LibraryThing
Syndetics Unbound helps public and academic libraries enrich their catalogs and discovery systems with high-interest elements, including cover images, summaries, author profiles, similar books, reviews, and more. Syndetics Unbound encourages serendipitous discovery and higher collection usage, and was recently awarded Platinum distinction in the LibraryWorks 2021 Modern Library Awards. To learn more about Syndetics Unbound, visit Syndetics.com. While there, be sure to visit their “News” tab to check out the Syndetics Unbound Blog for news and analysis, including a break-down of 2020’s most popular titles in public and academic libraries.

SHOW NOTES:

Change the World with Social Media
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209: Matt Finch and Bronwen Gamble

Steve chats with Matt Finch and Bronwen Gamble about facilitating scenario planning during a pandemic, involving all staff members in important decision-making, learning to live with uncertainty, and Bronwen’s plans (or lack thereof) for retirement.

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Dr. Matt Finch is an Associate Fellow of the Saïd Business School at the University of Oxford, where he teaches scenario planning and serves as Lead Facilitator on the award-winning Oxford Scenarios programme. He is a strategist and writer who helps companies, communities, and institutions to prepare for tomorrow and make better decisions today. He is also an Adjunct Research Fellow at the University of Southern Queensland, Australia, and was 2016-2017 Creative in Residence at the State Library of Queensland in that country. See more at www.mechanicaldolphin.com

Bronwen Gamble is the Executive Director of Reading Public Library in southeast Pennsylvania. She is the first woman to be named as director since its beginning in 1763. As a vital link for city and county residents, the library is known for a wide array of digital media, a dedicated RPL2GO app, outreach service with two grant-funded Mobile Technology Vans, and robust early literacy and workforce development programs. In 2018 Reading Public Library was named an Institute of Museum and Library Services gold medal winner for Outstanding Community Service, one of five winning libraries nationwide.

SPONSORS:

Book Buddies: Ivy Lost and Found, from Candlewick Press
Ivy Lost and Found, the first of a charming new early chapter book series about library toys and the children who borrow them, written by Newbery Honoree Cynthia Lord and illustrated by Stephanie Graegin. In a starred review, Booklist called Ivy Lost and Found “an engaging story of insecurity overcome by hop, courage, and love.” Ivy is the library’s newest book buddy —a toy that can be checked out just like a book—but she’d rather go back to being what she was before: the librarian’s favorite childhood doll.  So when Fern—a child with a new stepfamily who also wishes she could go back to the way things were—takes Ivy home, they embark on an adventure together that helps both of them find confidence and belonging in their changing worlds. Ivy Lost and Found is available now, and look for upcoming books in the Book Buddies series coming in Spring 2022!

Syndetics Unbound, from ProQuest and LibraryThing
Syndetics Unbound helps public and academic libraries enrich their catalogs and discovery systems with high-interest elements, including cover images, summaries, author profiles, similar books, reviews, and more. Syndetics Unbound encourages serendipitous discovery and higher collection usage, and was recently awarded Platinum distinction in the LibraryWorks 2021 Modern Library Awards. To learn more about Syndetics Unbound, visit Syndetics.com. While there, be sure to visit their “News” tab to check out the Syndetics Unbound Blog for news and analysis, including a break-down of 2020’s most popular titles in public and academic libraries.

SHOW NOTES:

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208: Julie Ann Winkelstein

Steve chats with Julie Ann Winkelstein, author of Homelessness and Libraries: an Action Guide, about her path to librarianship, terminology when discussing homelessness, compassion fatigue, and creating an action plan.

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Julie Ann Winkelstein, MLIS, PhD, is a librarian, writer, activist and teacher. She is the author of Libraries and Homelessness: An Action Guide (Libraries Unlimited), as well as several book chapters and journal articles, and was a contributing author and primary editor of the IFLA “Guidelines for Library Services to People Experiencing Homelessness.” Winkelstein created and teaches a library school master’s level course on homelessness, poverty and public libraries at the University of Tennessee, Knoxville, and a similar course at the University of Washington.  She has presented internationally on the topic of libraries and homelessness, including LGBTQ+ youth homelessness, and through an IMLS grant provided trainings and workshops for library staff on this topic. She worked for 20 years as a public librarian in a range of roles, from jail and prison librarian to family literacy coordinator to young adult and children’s librarian. Her work focuses on the intersection of social justice and public libraries. 

SPONSOR:

Syndetics Unbound, from ProQuest and LibraryThing.
Syndetics Unbound helps public and academic libraries enrich their catalogs and discovery systems with high-interest elements, including cover images, summaries, author profiles, similar books, reviews, and more. Syndetics Unbound encourages serendipitous discovery and higher collection usage, and was recently awarded Platinum distinction in the LibraryWorks 2021 Modern Library Awards. To learn more about Syndetics Unbound, visit Syndetics.com. While there, be sure to visit their “News” tab to check out the Syndetics Unbound Blog for news and analysis, including a break-down of 2020’s most popular titles in public and academic libraries.

SHOW NOTES:

Libraries and Homelessness: an Action Guide
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207: Hugo Mercier

Guest host Troy Swanson chats with Dr. Hugo Mercier, research scientist and author of Not Born Yesterday: The Science of Who We Trust and What We Believe, about cognitive science, how humans think they make decisions (and how they actually do), intuition, and why we aren’t as easily fooled as we think (…or are we?).

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Hugo Mercier who holds the PhD in cognitive sciences and is a research scientist at the Institut Jean Nicod, Paris where he works as part of the Evolution and Social Cognition team and the Collective Intelligence team. He is the co-author with Dan Sperber of the book The Enigma of Reason, and, most recently, he is the sole author of the book, Not Born Yesterday: The Science of Who We Trust and What We Believe.

Troy A. Swanson is Teaching & Learning Librarian and Library Department Chair at Moraine Valley Community College. He is also the President of the Moraine Valley Faculty Association. Troy is the author or editor of several books and articles including co-editor of Not Just Where to Click: Teaching Students How to Think About Information which received the Ilene F. Rockman Publication of the Year Award from ARCL’s Instruction Section. His Ph.D. dissertation focused on the management of technology policy in higher education. He served on ACRL’s Information Literacy Competency Standards for Higher Education Task Force which issued the Framework for Information Literacy.  Over his tenure as a librarian and educator, Troy has won his campuses Master Teacher and Innovation of the Year awards, as well as the Proquest Innovation in College Librarianship award from ACRL. 

Today’s show is brought to you by Syndetics Unbound, from ProQuest and LibraryThing. Syndetics Unbound helps public and academic libraries enrich their catalogs and discovery systems with high-interest elements, including cover images, summaries, author profiles, similar books, reviews, and more. Syndetics Unbound encourages serendipitous discovery and higher collection usage, and was recently awarded Platinum distinction in the LibraryWorks 2021 Modern Library Awards. To learn more about Syndetics Unbound, visit Syndetics.com. While there, be sure to visit their “News” tab to check out the Syndetics Unbound Blog for news and analysis, including a break-down of 2020’s most popular titles in public and academic libraries.

SHOW NOTES:

Subscribe to the Circulating Ideas newsletter for a deeper dive into this episode’s content!
The Enigma of Reason
Not Born Yesterday: The Science of Who We Trust and What We Believe

206: Becky Spratford

Steve chats with Becky Spratford, author of The Readers’ Advisory Guide to Horror, about RA for All’s origin story, why people read scary books, the importance of promoting diversity in the horror genre, and which book Steve should read next to scare the bejesus out of him.

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Becky Spratford [MLIS] is a Readers’ Advisor in Illinois specializing in serving patrons ages 13 and up. She trains library staff all over the world on how to match books with readers through the local public library. She runs the critically acclaimed RA training blog RA for All. She is under contract to provide content for EBSCO’s NoveList database and writes reviews for Booklist and a horror review column for Library Journal. Becky is a 20 year locally elected Library Trustee [still serving] and a Board member for the Reaching Across Illinois Library System. Known for her work with horror readers, Becky is the author of The Readers’ Advisory Guide to Horror, Third Edition [ALA Editions, 2021]. She is a proud member of the Horror Writers Association and currently serves as the Association’s Secretary and organizer of their annual Librarians’ Day. You can follow Becky on Twitter @RAforAll

Today’s show is brought to you by Syndetics Unbound, from ProQuest and LibraryThing. Syndetics Unbound helps public and academic libraries enrich their catalogs and discovery systems with high-interest elements, including cover images, summaries, author profiles, similar books, reviews, and more. Syndetics Unbound encourages serendipitous discovery and higher collection usage, and was recently awarded Platinum distinction in the LibraryWorks 2021 Modern Library Awards. To learn more about Syndetics Unbound, visit Syndetics.com. While there, be sure to visit their “News” tab to check out the Syndetics Unbound Blog for news and analysis, including a break-down of 2020’s most popular titles in public and academic libraries.

SHOW NOTES:

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The Readers’ Advisory Guide to Horror (shipping August 26!)