Current Cites

September 2015

Edited by Roy Tennant

Contributors: Charles W. Bailey, Jr., Alison Cody, Peter Hirtle, Leo Robert Klein, Nancy Nyland, Roy Tennant

Libraries at the Crossroads  Washington, DC: Pew Research Center, September 2015.( - A new survey by the Pew Internet project shines a light directly on how communities view their local libraries. In part, "Many Americans say they want public libraries to: a) support local education; b) serve special constituents such as veterans, active-duty military personnel and immigrants; c) help local businesses, job seekers and those upgrading their work skills; and d) embrace new technologies such as 3-D printers and provide services to help patrons learn about high-tech gadgetry. Additionally, two-thirds of Americans (65%) ages 16 and older say that closing their local public library would have a major impact on their community." All in all, this survey is good news for American public libraries, but the findings also point to areas that libraries may wish to allocate some effort to serve their communities better. - RT

Ajmi, Ayyoub. "Hacked! Lessons Learned From An URL InjectionComputers In Libraries  35(5)(June 2015): 8-11. ( - 'URL Injection' -- two of the scariest words for anyone running a website in this day and age. In this case, it happened only two weeks after the launch of a new site. The bad news came, as it often does, through Google Webmaster Tools. As the author explains, "URL injection (aka SEO poisoning) is a technique used to drive traffic to malicious sites by injecting poisoned URLs and redirections into legitimate websites." The good news is that there are methods to clean up the site. The author discusses a number of these plus lessons learned from the attack. - LRK

Altman, Micah, Matthew  Bernhardt, and Lisa  Horowitz, et. al.SPEC Kit 348: Rapid Fabrication/Makerspace Services  Washington, DC: Association of Research Libraries, September 2015.( - For those unfamiliar with this publication series, a SPEC Kit is the summary of a survey of ARL members about a particular topic. In this case, the SPEC Kit "includes descriptions of makerspaces, examples of 3-D printing guides and other user training material, policies and procedures, equipment, software, and models, and job descriptions of staff who provide these services." Any academic library implementing or considering implementing these kinds of services will find the information and examples here helpful. Although the full document is sold, the Executive Summary is freely available. - RT

Briney, Kristin, Abigail  Goben, and Lisa  Zilinski. "Do You Have an Institutional Data Policy? A Review of the Current Landscape of Library Data Services and Institutional Data PoliciesJournal of Librarianship and Scholarly Communication  3(2)(2015): eP1232. ( - This study reviewed the library data services and data policies of 206 universities with with a "Very High" or "High" Carnegie research activity designation. The answer to the question posed by the title of this paper is "maybe." Only 44% of studied institutions had a university policy for research data. A third of those policies were IP policies and two-thirds were standalone data policies. Fifty percent of studied institutions had libraries that provided data services. This interesting, detailed research paper offers many additional insights into the current state of data services and policies. It is part of a large special issue of the Journal of Librarianship and Scholarly Communication on research data issues that anyone interested in this topic should definitely check out. - CB

Coco, Pete, Matthew  Reidsma, and Jennifer  Anderson, et. al."The UX Moment: A Weave Digital Panel, Part OneWeave: A Journal of Library User Experience  1(2)(2015)(;rgn=main). - Weave assembled a panel of nine librarians from academic and public libraries to talk about how they create and maintain a UX program within their institutions. Some are able to have teams, but many have just one UX librarian. Where UX design is a new concept, the practitioner may need to be able to write her own job description. The User Experience Librarian may be the sole person doing this work, not only in the library, but in the entire organization. Solo UX librarians expand their influence by reaching out to other departments. Those who have other duties as well must establish partnerships both inside and outside of the library out of necessity. These provide opportunities for collaboration that help to make the institution aware of user experience design. As the library develops a reputation for its UX work, other departments may ask them to participate in and contribute to projects outside of the library. The many useful ideas put forward here show how creative librarians can be in structuring a valuable new program within existing constraints in varying environments. - NN

Polkinghorne, Sarah. "Unpacking and Overcoming In the Library with the Lead Pipe  (9 September 2015)( - In this piece, Polkinghorne looks at entertainment in the context of library instruction sessions. Particularly of interest are sections where she examines how the focus on entertainment changes the emphasis of the class itself. By positioning librarians as entertainers, we are leaving students in a passive role, and taking the focus away from the content. The "need" to be funny, witty, or otherwise entertaining may also be yet another source of teaching anxiety, particularly for those who already know that they are not natural teachers, or strong presenters. Instead of trying to entertain, the author suggests simple engagement is a better goal, and points to several concepts from the performing arts that may enhance an instructor's delivery of the content. Certainly a worthwhile read for anyone who spends time in the classroom, particularly those who are trying to improve or develop their teaching persona. - AC

Turkos, Anne S.K., Jason G.  Speck, and Amanda K.  Hawk. "Throwing a Hail Mary! The University of Maryland Football Film ProjectThe Reading Room: A Journal of Special Collections  1(1)(24 September 2015): 59. ( - Every university archives has lots of film and video from its athletic teams that is quietly deteriorating. In this inspiring story from the "How we did it good in our shop" genre of professional literature, a group from the University of Maryland describes its efforts to do something about the problem. First they raised some money, which is no mean feat. They then identified a digitization vendor by working the exhibit hall at a national meeting (one of the reasons why face-to-face meetings are still desirable). In the end, they digitized almost half of the football films in the collection, but the prospects for getting more funding are not strong. More troubling is a passing reference to a digitization project involving 16 videotapes of basketball games: "10 of the 16 tapes exhibited irreparable video or sound deterioration." This article is in the first issue of a new open access scholarly journal on library special collections. We wish The Reading Room well. - PH