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Feedback Wanted: Strategic Planning

Dear colleagues:

I wanted to share some highlights related to our strategic planning activities at Annual Conference.

AL Live: The Kid and Teen-Friendly Library

The July 10 episode of American Libraries Live (AL Live), “The Kid and Teen-Friendly Library,” featured a discussion on getting children and youth involved with the library and library services. Jennifer Velasquez, coordinator of teen services for the San Antonio (Tex.) Public Library System and a lecturer in the Graduate School of Library and Information Science at San José (Calif.) State University, moderated the following panelists as they shared their insights on the topic:

Predictions

What do new enterprises such as Scribd, Oyster, and Kindle Unlimited tell us?

First, they tell us that the subscription service model makes at least some sense both to aggregator and consumer. (Although I continue to find Total Boox a fascinating alternative.)

Amazon Unlimited

The disruption continues, and it’s hard not to see the announcement of the new Kindle Unlimited Service as a significant challenge to libraries.

A Passion for Coding

Technology is eating the world. Like a hungry dragon seeking out new villages to pillage, the tech world continues to find new markets to disrupt. And, like some mythical beast of apocalyptic proportions, technology is just as unstoppable. Good? Evil? Technology is code and that is all that matters. Some use it for good, and some for not so good. The point is that many others are out there using it. Where are libraries?

Amazon Calls Baloney

Maybe it’s because I’ve been rereading classic Daniel Pinkwater novels (namely, The Snarkout Boys and the Avocado of Death and The Snarkout Boys and the Baconburg Horror) but Amazon’s latest stunner of a response to stalled negotiations with Hachette reads like a young-adult comedy.

DCL Ebook Report for July 2014

Read the Douglas County (Colo.) Libraries Ebook Report as a PDF file.

What interests me this month is that we have a book (Meredith Wild’s Hardline) that doesn’t seem to be available in any readily obtainable format to libraries. It’s part of a series (the Hacker series, number 3), and might be categorized as erotica.

Walter Dean Myers Dies

Prolific and award-winning author Walter Dean Myers, 76, winner of the first-ever Michael L. Printz Award for the novel Monster, died July 1 after a brief illness.

Q&A with Laurie R. King

Laurie R. King is the bestselling author of 23 books, known for her detective/mystery fiction, including the Mary Russell and Sherlock Holmes and Kate Martinelli mysteries. She spoke Monday at the United for Libraries Gala Author Tea during the 2014 ALA Annual Conference and Exhibition.

American Libraries: What kind of books did you enjoy reading when you were younger?

The Second Phase of Technological Disruption

I’ve been thinking about a book called Why Nations Fail, by Daron Acemoğlu and James Robinson. To (over)summarize, the coauthors say that nations fail because they resist, and try to stifle, the disruption that follows technological breakthroughs.

Technological disruption challenges prevailing power. Naturally, those established institutions try to fight back. But they rarely win. Disruption tends to release a dam of pent-up and democratic energy. Eventually, it overwhelms or transforms the established order.

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