College & Research Libraries News

News from the Field

Mary Ellen Davis

ALA votes to challenge Children's Internet Protection Act

ALA’s executive board voted on January 17 to initiate legal action challenging the recently enacted Children’s Internet Protection Act (CIPA), signed into law on December 21. The decision came after more than a week of intense discussion among leaders and members during the Midwinter Meeting. ALA contends the act is unconstitutional and creates an infringement of First Amendment protections.

The federal rider, which was attached to the Labor HHS Education Appropriations Bill, mandates libraries and schools to install content filters on all computers that offer Internet access as a prerequisite to receiving federal grant funds. Funding sources include the e-rate program, the Library Services and Technology Act, and the Elementary and Secondary Education Act. All three programs help ensure schools and libraries provide access to the resources communities need to thrive in the information age. CIPA runs counter to these federal efforts to close the digital divide for all Americans.

No filtering software successfully differentiates constitutionally protected speech from illegal speech on the Internet. Even the federal commission appointed to study child safety on the Internet concluded filters are not effective in blocking all content that some may find objectionable, but they do block much useful and constitutionally protected information.

ALA is researching and exploring its options in preparation for litigation.

Furman University adopts elementary school

Furman University in Greenville, South Carolina, has partnered with the Urban League of the Upstate in its “Operation Adopt-A-School” program. The goal of the program is to raise student test scores, increase parental involvement, and improve the buildings and grounds. The James B. Duke Library at Furman is specifically committed to helping Sirrine Elementary School purchase new books for its library and update the facility.

Janis Bandelin, director of Furman’s library, delivered the first batch of new books to the Sirrine library in December. So far, Furman and the Urban League have raised $2,500 to purchase new books for the Sirrine library. “The book collection at the Sirrine library is sorely out of date,” Bandelin said. “The majority of its books was published before 1950, and its encyclopedia sets were published before 1980. So we felt it was important that the students have more up-to-date reading material available to them. ”

ACRL allocates $60,000 for scholarships

The ACRL Board of Directois has set aside $60,000 to award scholarships to ACRL members and students attending ACRL conferences and institutes. The three scholarship programs identified to date are:

• 50 entry-level librarians will share $25,250 to fund registration and some travel expenses to tire ACRL National Conference in Denver, March 15-18, 2001;

• graduate students in library and information studies programs will receive registration and travel expenses to the ACRL National Conference, drawing from $15,000 that lias been set aside for this purpose;

• selected Track 1 participants in the ACRL Institute for Information Literacy Immersion program, August 3-8, 2001, at SUNY Plattsburgh will receive scholarship funds drawn from another $15,000 allocation.

ACRL offers free Placement Center in Denver

List your job openings at the Placement Center at the ACRL National Conference in Denver, March 15-18,2001. The Placement Center will post job openings and information from job seekers in a searchable, online database. Opportunities to arrange interviews and a message center will be available onsite.

The Placement Center, coordinated by the ALA Office for Human Resource Development and Recruitment, will be open Thursday through Saturday, March 15-17. Visit http://www. to complete employer and job-seeker forms. Questions? Contact Maxine Moore at

The ACRL Board recognizes that professional development is one the highest priorities of ACRL members.

URLs have short shelf life

A study by Cornell University librar- ians indicates that many Web ad- dresses cited in student term-paper bibliographies often are incorrect or refer to documents that no longer ex- ist.

The study, using term papers be- tween 1996 and 1999, found that af- ter a mere six months, URL references cited in term papers stood more than a 50 percent chance of not existing. After four years, the URL references cited stood an 80 percent chance of no longer existing. Philip M. Davis and Suzanne A. Cohen of Cornell studied the citation behavior of undergraduates in a large multi-college class, Introduction to Microeconomics.

The results of their research, “The Effect of the Web on Undergraduate Citation Behavior, 1996-1999” will be published in a forthcoming issue of the Journal of the American Society forInformation Science (JASIS). The research- ers also discovered a decrease in the frequency of scholarly resources cited. Book references dropped from 30 to 19 percent. Newspaper citations increased from 7 to 19 percent and Web citations increased from 9 to 21 percent.

Join the virtual discussions on digital reference and more!

Make the most of your time at the ACRL National Con- ference, March 15-18, 2001, by thinking about and dis- cussing major issues before you get to Denver.

How will digital reference change libraries and their services? What is the future of academic reference? Join the virtual discussion hosted by David Lankes, director of Information Institute of Syracuse at Syracuse University, on the Web at http://quartz.

At this Web site you will find introductory materials for the session, a reading list, information on the program, links to digital reference sites, and a place to begin the dialog. Participate in the online discussion forum and share your thoughts on the issues surrounding digital reference.

Read papers on assessment, scholarly communication, and future challengesLeaders in higher education have prepared, at ACRL's request, background papers on assessment of student learning, challenges for academic libraries, and the changing role of librarians in the scholarly communication process. These papers are on the ACRL Web site at denver/invitedpapers.html:

• Becoming Pockets of Hope: The Challenge to Academic Libraries of the 21st Century—Eileen de los Reyes, assistant professor of Education, Harvard University

•Assessment of Student Learning— Kenneth Smith, Eller Distinguished Service professor, University of Arizona

•Shifting Sands: The Changing Jurisdiction of Librarians in the Scholarly Communication Process—Michael Ray, team systems director, University of Arizona

Come to Denver prepared to join the discussions on these issues affecting academic librarianship and higher education. Hundreds of programs, networking, and discussion opportunities are available at the conference. Full details are on the Web at acrl/denver.html. Questions? Contact ACRL at (800) 545-2433 ext. 2515 or e-mail: acrl@ala.otg.

ingenta offers CrossRef Linking

ingenta, a global research gateway, has become a registered agent for CrossRef, the reference linking initiative for scientific and scholarly publishers (see “CrossRef’ article on page 206). Publishers hosted by ingenta will benefit from becoming part of a system that links their reference citations to the cited content.

CrossRef links more than 3 million articles from thousands of journals and will add 500,00 each year. CrossRef allows participating publishers to link from electronic article references in one publication to citations and references in another publication, ingenta will act as an agent on behalf of member publishers to register their metadata, look up Digital Object Identifiers, store them in a local system and share them among the member publishers. For details visit http://www. or

Alexander Street Press announces charter customers

Alexander Street Press, a humanities electronic publishing company launched in July 2000 by executives of the former Chadwyck-Healey company, announced its list of charter customers: Boston College, California Digital Library (for all ten campuses of the University of California System), Columbia University, Emory University, Harvard University, Johns Hopkins University, New York University, Ohio State University, Penn State University, Stanford University, Yale University, and the Universities of Chicago, Notre Dame, and Wisconsin.

Eileen Lawrence, vice president of sales and marketing, said, “Instead of merely digitizing pages, we are collaborating with scholars and subject specialists, carefully constructing collections, then indexing very deeply. The result is a database that answers questions in ways never before possible.”

The company is developing databases in history, women’s studies, sociology, popular culture, film studies, the arts, and more. Details may be found on the Web at http: //alexanderstreetpress. com/

Digitized Texas constitutions available from UTA

The Jamail Center for Legal Research at the University of Texas at Austin has completed its Texas Constitutions Digitization Project. The Web site ( constitutions/) provides access to a complete collection of the seven constitutions that have governed Texas beginning with its days as Mexican state. The constitutions are available as both searchable text and image files.

Bell & Howell's offers new business database

Bell & Howell’s Information and Learning unit introduced ABI/INFORM Trade & Industry, an electronic business database comprised of more than 700 business publications in full text and available on the Web via the ProQuest online information services. When added to ABI/INFORM Global, the combined resource provides access to 1,400 current business titles, nearly 1,100 in full text. Users can search the ProQuest interface by fields such as article title, author, source name, ISSN, date, and company name. Free trials of the database are available. Librarians should call their ProQuest account representative at (800) 521-0600 ext. 3183 or 3452.

Lose weight at work without doing much

While the workplace can often be stressful, the average workday has many opportunities for exercise and weight reduction. Here’s a guide to calorie-burning activities and the number of calories per hour they consume (your own list may vary).

Beating around the bush 75

Jumping to conclusions 90

Climbing the walls 150

Swallowing your pride 50

Passing the buck 25

Throwing your weight around (depending on your weight) 50-300

Dragging your heels 100

Pushing your luck 250

Making mountains out of molehills 500

Hitting the nail on the head 50

Wading through paperwork 300

Bending over backwards 75

Jumping on the bandwagon 200

Balancing the books 200

Running in circles 350

Eating crow 225

Tooting your own horn 25

Climbing the ladder of success 750

Pulling out the stops 75

Adding fuel to the fire 160

Wrapping it up 12

Putting your foot in your mouth 300

Starting the ball rolling 90

Going over the edge 25

Picking up the pieces 350

Counting eggs before they hatch 6

Calling it quits 2

Reprinted with permission fromUCR Library News, a newsletter of the University of California Riverside.

Copyright © American Library Association

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