Tuesday, March 31, 2009

Senator Introduces Bill That Would Allow American Newspapers to Operate as Non-Profits

U.S. Senator Benjamin L. Cardin (D-MD) introduced legislation that would allow newspapers to become non-profit organizations in an effort to help the faltering industry survive.

In recent months, the Seattle Post-Intelligencer, the Rocky Mountain News, the Baltimore Examiner and the San Francisco Chronicle, among others, have either ceased daily publication or announced that they may have to stop publishing. A number of other publications, including newspapers owned by the Tribune Company, owners of The Baltimore Sun, have filed for bankruptcy or have had to institute severe cutbacks that have impacted news coverage.

The Newspaper Revitalization Act would allow newspapers to operate as non-profits, if they choose, under 501(c)(3) status for educational purposes, similar to public broadcasting. Under this arrangement, newspapers would not be allowed to make political endorsements, but would be allowed to freely report on all issues, including political campaigns. Advertising and subscription revenue would be tax exempt and contributions to support coverage or operations could be tax deductible.

The measure is targeted to preserve local newspapers serving communities and not large newspaper conglomerates. Because newspaper profits have been falling in recent years, no substantial loss of federal revenue is expected.

Monday, March 30, 2009

Delaying Gratification

Evidence shows that people may be biased towards seeking short-term rewards at the expense of greater long-term benefits. Several factors influence how biased people are likely to be towards the present. Understanding these could inform policies that encourage individuals to make important life choices that affect their own long-term interests.

Streaming For Free: Introducing Documentaries on Hulu

Click through to Hulu’s Movies section and you may notice a new addition to the grey menu bar near the top: a new link to Documentaries. In this new section on Hulu, you’ll find some of our most popular documentary films and shorts alongside a whole slew of new additions.

Sunday, March 29, 2009

Yet another article on libraries during these times

One from the NY Times makes for more interesting reading.

Quote from a women who took out a library card for herself for the first time in years (and also her first time in the library for years) and once she taken out her items "instinctively reached for her wallet to pay". "I guess it will take an adjustment period until I realize that some of the best things in life are indeed free," she said.

URL is

More Twitter help


Libraries for the Future, National Non-Profit, Closing After 17 Years

LFF Leaves Working Programs, Innovative Approaches in Hundreds of Libraries

NEW YORK, NY—March 18, 2009— After nearly two decades of leadership sparking innovation and investment in the nation's public libraries, the national non-profit organization Libraries for the Future (LFF) has announced that it has ceased operations.

“We have accomplished so many of our initial goals to re-establish the role of libraries at the center of our communities,” said LFF Executive Director Bruce Astrein. “There is more work to be done and it is unfortunate that the current economic climate has made it impossible for us to continue. That is especially true now, as we’ve been hearing from many libraries that the economic downtown has increased demand for library services just as it is squeezing library funding. We are hopeful that public libraries can draw upon LFF’s legacy of programs and resources to mobilize community support for their critical services.”

LFF was founded in 1992 during a time of deep funding cuts to champion libraries at the national level and to help individual libraries become leaders in technology, community development, cultural vitality and democratic participation. Built upon the vision of writer and activist Harriet Barlow and a small group of library advocates, LFF was the first national citizen-advocacy group to uphold the free, public library as a vast potential resource in our midst. In subsequent years, LFF helped libraries navigate the transition to the digital age, build community partnerships, and expand their services to patrons across the lifespan under the leadership of Diantha Dow Schull, a member of the organization’s initial planning team and LFF’s executive director until her retirement in December 2008.

In addition to continuing its founding advocacy work, LFF hosted forums connecting experts across disciplines, published influential reports on library use and potential (including Long Overdue), and developed and oversaw programs that have run in close to 400 libraries in 33 states—most of which will continue to run. LFF programs help libraries address a wide array of issues including early childhood literacy (Family Place Libraries), physical and brain health across the lifespan (Fit for Life), the desire of active older adults for meaningful work and community connections (Lifelong Access Libraries), and the urgent need for free, reliable consumer health information (Health Access Libraries). In addition, LFF is proud of statewide networks of libraries trained in its “EqualAccess” approach, strengthening the role of libraries as vibrant community centers.

Through LFF, the nation’s libraries have benefitted from the support and vision of close to 100 funders, including major support from the Atlantic Philanthropies, the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation, the Bush Clinton Katrina Fund, the HKH Foundation, W.K. Kellogg Foundation, the Jacob and Valeria Langeloth Foundation, Metropolitan Life Foundation, the Petersmeyer Family Foundation, and the Pritzker Early Childhood Foundation. We are also grateful to partners such as the Middle Country Public Library, which will continue to oversee Family Place Libraries.

On behalf of our past and current national board and council members,” said Jeffrey S. Scherer, Chair of the LFF Board of Directors, “we want to express our sincere gratitude to the staff, consultants and funders who have ensured that meaningful and important services and programs were delivered to the libraries of the United States. Without their resources, dedication and intelligence, LFF's mission could not have been accomplished."

Saturday, March 28, 2009

Cong. John Conyers to Speak in Albany on Sunday March 29th on Single Payer Health Care for All

Faith Groups to Speak to the Moral Right to Health Care *

*Albany, NY- Congressman John Conyers will be in Albany for a Congressional Town Hall Meeting on Sunday, March 29th from 2-4:30 pm at Westminster Presbyterian Church, 262 State Street in Albany (1/2 block west of State Capitol). *

The Town Hall Meeting, sponsored by the Albany Presbytery, is one of ten nationwide meetings funded by the Presbyterian Church USA to open discussion of Single Payer Health Care for the United States. A major focus of the event will be the moral right of all Americans to have health care. Faith representatives will participate in a panel discussion, including Chandlee Gill of the Albany Presbytery, Dr. Richard Propp of the B’nai Sholom Reform Congregation (Albany) and Yussouf Mir of the Islamic Center of the Capital District. A representative of the Methodist Church will also speak.

Congressman Conyers is the lead sponsor of HR 676, the US National Health Care Act, Single Payer Medicare for All bill in Congress. The bill, which would replace private health insurance with a single public financing system to provide comprehensive coverage for everyone in the nation, has the most support of any universal health care proposal now in Congress. It also is the plan that is most favored by the American public, doctors, nurses and researchers. Congressman Conyers participated in the recent White House Forum on Health Care to advocate for Single Payer Health Care.

Single payer legislation is also pending in both houses of the NYS Legislature and a state study on various universal health care options is due shortly after the budget is released.

Congressman Paul Tonko, a co-sponsor of HR 676 also will participate in the Town Hall Meeting. Governor Paterson, Senators Schumer and Gillibrand, and Representative Hinchey also have been invited.

Dr. Andy Coates of the Physicians for a National Health Program (PNHP) Capital District Chapter will answer some of the basic questions regarding single payer health care.

Co Sponsors of the event include: Albany Presbytery, Capital Area Council of Churches, Interdenominational Ministers Conference, Fifth Avenue AME Zion Church of Troy, Labor Religion Coalition of NY State, Single Payer New York, Capital District Area Labor Federation, Capital DistrictAlliance for Universal Health Care, Solidarity Committee of Program (PNHP) Capital District Chapter, Albany Medical College Student PNHP Chapter,Hunger Action Network of NYS and Faith and Hunger Network

For More Information: Rev. Cass Shaw, 518 273-4991
Mark Dunlea, Single Payer NY, 518 434-7371 xt 1#

Underground Railroad residence clean up

This coming April 4th, there will be a work day at the Stephen and Harriet Myers Residence at 194 Livingston Avenue in Albany. There are some fallen tree lims in the rear yard that need to be cut up and tidily arranged or disposal.

There will also be clean up at 190 Livingston Avenue that was once the home of Abram Johnson, the father of John Johnson and Harriet Johnson. John Johnson built 194 Livingston. Harriet Johnson married Stephen Myers in 1827. This would be a good opportunity to celebrate some important history and contribute to its preservation.
Also: Our Jazz Benefit fundraiser is finally set!
Blue Coda Jazz Ensemble with Danny Mixon will play on April 26, 2009 from 4 pm to 8 pm at the ballroom of the Clarion Hotel at 3 Watervliet Avenue Extension in Albany. Light Fare, Cash Bar, Silent Auction. Tickets $40 in advance and $45 at the door. For more information call 436-0562 or 331-5607. This will be a sizzling event so come and bring friends! Tickets can also be purchased off the UGRR web site.

ALA files comments to FCC on rural broadband strategy

From the ALA Washington Office

On March 25, the ALA Washington Office filed comments to the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) in response to the commission’s request for comments on a rural broadband strategy.
This opportunity gave ALA a platform to communicate how libraries can play a pivotal role in helping rural areas achieve the connectivity levels needed for tangible economic, educational and social growth.
The ALA’s filing outlined the following four recommendations:
·Develop and support the library’s role as the information hub
in rural communities
·Recognize public libraries as an essential source of lifelong
learning opportunities in rural communities
·The FCC should encourage the deployment of fiber to public
·Simplify the E-rate process
Additionally, ALA explained that the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act (ARRA) of 2009 provides the funding for the initial investment of build-out of broadband infrastructure. Existing federal programs, such as the E-rate program, assist with the day-to-day sustainability of that investment. Both of these tools are necessary to create the advanced broadband network envisioned by the ARRA’s authors.

Vera and the Ambassador: Escape and Return

The Rockefeller Institute of Government invites you to a Public Policy Forum Friday, April 3rd:

Vera and the Ambassador: Escape and Return, published by SUNY Press
A Book Forum with Authors Vera and Donald Blinken

Donald Blinken is the former U.S. Ambassador to Hungary and a former SUNY Board of Trustees chairman

The program will begin at 10:30 a.m. and ends at 12:00 p.m.

The forum will be held at The Nelson A. Rockefeller Institute of Government, 411 State Street, Albany, New York 12203.

RSVPs are required. Please RSVP as soon as possible to: (518) 443-5258 or charbonm@rockinst.org.

Friday, March 27, 2009

Public Libraries and Department of Labor Employment Centers

New York's unemployment numbers now show that 762,600 workers statewide are unemployed. Because of the tremendous need for assistance with employment and retraining information and assistance, the NYS Department of Labor (DOL) is interested in placing some DOL employees who could provide employment counseling, programs and training, to work in public libraries across New York.

The State Library and the public library systems are working with the DOL to assess interest and capacity for hosting such staff in public libraries. The public library systems are surveying member libraries this week and next and results will be shared with the Department of Labor as soon as results are complete.

Public Library Systems and public libraries continue to work individually in many regions of the state to collaborate on job/career information training and workshops for both library staff and the public.

For additional information on the survey please contact: Cassie Artale, New York State Library / Division of Library Development, 518/474-1479, cartale@mail.nysed.gov

Touring Turn-of-the-Century America

Photographs from the Detroit Publishing Company, 1880-1920

This collection of photographs at the Library of Congress from the Detroit Publishing
Company Collection includes more than 25,000 glass negatives and transparencies as well as about 300 color photolithograph prints, mostly of the eastern United States. The collection includes the work of a number of photographers, one of whom was the well known photographer William Henry Jackson.

Thursday, March 26, 2009

Yet another article about how wonderful libraries are

Article in the NY Times about how libraries are finding themselves as makeshift employment centers.

Telescope Event at the Pine Bush Discovery Center on May 3

Do you own a telescope?
Do you know how to use it?
Would you like some help?
WHERE The Pine Bush Discovery Center
195 New Karner Road
Albany, New York 12205
WHEN Sunday, May 3, 2009
TIME 4:00—6:00 PM
COST $20.00 per telescope
(free to members of Dudley and Friends of Pine Bush)
RSVP Call Dudley Observatory at 382-7583 to reserve your
spot. Please tell us the make & model of your telescope.
How to balance your telescope, align and use finder, use
star maps, and more.
Dudley Observatory
107 Nott Terrace, Suite 201
Schenectady, New York 12308

Meetona: the meeting maker

From the Hill Library

Overcome the challenges of coordinating meeting times for large groups of people with meetona.

Meetona is a free Web-based tool for organizing meetings. It does not require registration, login, or downloads and it holds no information on its users. The organizer simply creates a calendar of potential meeting times and shares the calendar URL with the meeting participants. Each participant removes the options that don't work for him or her, and the resulting calendar shows only the times when all participants are available.

Wednesday, March 25, 2009

Job Seekers Turn to the Library as a Base of Operations

Read what The New York Times has to say about how libraries help job seekers.

Governor David A. Paterson’s Recovery Cabinet to Hold Broadband Stimulus Information Session

March 30, 2009, 1pm – 3pm
Clark Auditorium, Cultural Education Center
Empire State Plaza, Concourse Level
Albany, NY

Governor David A. Paterson’s Recovery Stimulus Cabinet is conducting Information Sessions across the State regarding the provisions of the Recovery Bill. An Information Session on the Broadband Provisions of the Recovery Bills will be jointly hosted by NYS Chief Information Officer and New York State Office for Technology (CIO/OFT) and the NYS Public Service Commission (PSC). Come hear about the Broadband Initiatives funded by the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act (ARRA) (“Stimulus”) of 2009. Learn how these provisions align with Governor David A. Paterson’s Universal Broadband Strategy for New Yorkers. This meeting is intended for members in the broadband service provider community, digital literacy training community in the public and private sectors, local/county/state entities, not-for-profit organizations, foundations, schools, community technology centers, libraries and other organizations who provide either Internet services or digital literacy and consumer education programs.

Hear about the two main broadband programs: Broadband Technology Opportunities Program and the Rural Utilities Services Broadband provisions of the Stimulus Bill. Included in the session will be a question and answer segment. Please email your questions no later than 48 hours before the session begins to broadbandstimulus@cio.state.ny.us to enable a productive session.

Invited Parties Include:
· State and local officials and agencies interested in extending Broadband access to their unserved and underserved urban and rural communities;
· Not-for-profit organizations interested in deploying Broadband access to the populations they serve;
· Libraries, educational and research institutions, foundations or digital literacy education programs interested in building out broadband infrastructure or providing digital literacy training programs to increase broadband demand and adoption; and
· Broadband service providers interested in partnering with other public and private organizations and companies to accelerate the build out of broadband infrastructures and training programs which will create jobs.

To Make A Reservation: Please make your reservation to attend by sending an email to: broadbandstimulus@cio.state.ny.us . With limited space, the state is asking each organization to limit the number of attendees to no more than four, as a courtesy, to allow more organizations to participate in the first of a series of information sessions.

For Additional Information and Stimulus Resources: Please continue to monitor Governor David A. Paterson’s Recovery website at: www.recovery.ny.gov. Mail your prepared questions to broadbandstimulus@cio.state.ny.us or use the toll free broadband stimulus number at 1-866-322-5787.

Tuesday, March 24, 2009

Support Your Libraries

Library Advocates need to remind their Legislators and the Governor to restore the proposed $18 million or 18% cut in Library Aid.

Please go to NYLA's Online Advocacy Center and send a fax/email to your legislators to remind them not to forget about their commitments to restore Library Aid. If these cuts go through, Library Aid will be reduced to $80.5 million, a level not seen since 1993.

Library usage has skyrocketed across the state and nation. Now is not the time to cut public services that are in the greatest demand and needed the most.
Libraries have already been cut twice last year, we have contributed our share, now it is time for others to do their part to solve the state's budget deficit.

New York State Guide

The digital collections of the Library of Congress contain a wide variety of material associated with New York State, including manuscripts, broadsides, government documents, books, and maps. This guide compiles links to digital materials related to New York that are available throughout the Library of Congress Web site. In addition, it provides links to external Web sites focusing on New York and a bibliography containing selected works for both a general audience and younger readers.

Created by Angela McMillian, Digital Reference Specialist

Friday, March 20, 2009

ARRA Update

nformation on stimulus funding for NEA now available online '

The American Recovery and Reinvestment Act (ARRA) includes $50 million for the
National Endowment for the Arts. The first two grants funded by the ARRA of
interest to libraries were posted on Grants.gov yesterday.

For more information and link to the grant announcements, go to the "What
librarians should know about ARRA" section on www.ala.org/knowyourstimulus.

Wednesday, March 18, 2009

Job posting: CDLC Member Services Coordinator

The Capital District Library Council is looking for an energetic and creative individual to fill the position of Member Services Coordinator.

Title: Member Services Coordinator
Reports To: Executive Director
Position: Full-time (35 hours per week), Exempt, Excellent Benefits

The Capital District Library Council is seeking a dynamic self-starter interested in providing leadership for library programs, services, and activities offered to member libraries by the Council. The Coordinator provides administrative support for all Council operations including general office activities, financial operations, records management, and the Board of Trustees.

This position is an opportunity for an energetic and creative person to learn about all type of libraries and a variety library system activities.

· Minimum Bachelor’s Degree; preference given to MLS Degree
· Minimum three years relevant experience

Knowledge, Skills, and Abilities
· Understanding of libraries and library programs
· Strong leadership skills
· Ability to forge strong community partnerships and effectively communicate with a variety of groups and individuals
· Public relations skills
· Comfort with evolving technologies
· Demonstrated proficiency in MS Office software applications (Word, Excel, Access, Publisher); preference given to candidates with experience in Peachtree or other accounting software
· Ability and willingness to teach and assist other staff members in applications software
· Enthusiasm, confidence, and a genuine interest in people
· Awareness of the role of libraries in the community

CDLC is one of New York State’s nine regional Reference, Research and Resources (3Rs) Library Systems. The Council provides infrastructure for information services to all types of libraries in ten upstate counties. For more information visit the Council’s web page at http://www.cdlc.org/.

To apply please send resumé and names of three references to:
Jean K. Sheviak, Executive Director
28 Essex Street
Albany, NY 12206
Review of applications will begin on April 1, 2009

CDLC is an Equal Opportunity Employer

Tuesday, March 17, 2009

Stanford Web Credibility Project

From the Hill Library:

What causes users to believe what they find on the Web? What factors influence them? If you're interested in the answers to these questions and more, you should know about the Stanford Web Credibility Project.

The Web Credibility Project is part of the Stanford Persuasive Technology Lab, which "creates insight into how computing products - from websites to mobile phone software - can be designed to change what people believe and what they do." The Project carries out quantitative research on Web credibility, collects information on the topic, and acts as a clearing house.

Based on its research, the Web Credibility Project has compiled a top 10 list of design factors influencing site credibility. To check out these guidelines, visit here.

Monday, March 16, 2009

Medieval helpdesk (with English subtitles)

Helpdesk support back in the day. Original taken from the show "Øystein og jeg" on Norwegian Broadcasting (NRK)in 2001. With Øystein Backe (helper)and Rune Gokstad (desperate monk). Written by Knut Nærum.

HMLA Spring Dinner: An Evening with Paul Grondahl

Please join the Hudson Mohawk Library Association on Friday, April 17th, 2009 at the Italian American Community Center for dinner and a presentation by Paul Grondahl, Times Union reporter, author, and professor.

5:30 Social Hour (Cash Bar)
6:30 Annual Business Meeting
6:40 2009 Distinguished Service Award: John Vallely
6:45 Dinner
8:00 Program

The dinner is $25 per person; registration form available here. For more information, about HMLA, visit the website.

Paul Grondahl will be speaking on a variety of topics including local history, politics, and the Obama Inauguration. He has produced a DVD about the inauguration that will be available for purchase for $10.

Grondahl is an award-winning journalist and author. He has been a staff writer at the Albany Times Union since 1984, where his assignments have taken him from the Arctic to Antarctica, from Northern Ireland to Africa, and across New York State, from Ground Zero on 9/11 to the Adirondack wilderness.

The author of four books, Grondahl also was named Albany Author of the Year in 1997 by the Albany Public Library and Notable Author of the Year by the Guilderland Public Library and East Greenbush Public Library, both in 2004. He has been featured on C-SPAN’s "About Books" and "Book TV".

Sunday, March 15, 2009


New York State Librarian and Assistant Commissioner for Libraries, Bernard A. Margolis, announced that the New York State Library has awarded 240 matching Public Library Construction Grants to public libraries and public library systems for 2008-09. Fifty-nine grants are supported by $777,101 in local assistance funds and 181 grants are supported by $14 million in capital funds appropriated in the 2008 State Budget for construction and renovation of public library and public library system buildings in New York State.

A list of those libraries and library systems receiving matching grants under each grant program can be accessed at here. Project activities and expenditures eligible for such grants include financing construction of new library buildings, construction of additions to existing buildings, and the renovation and/or rehabilitation of existing space, including roof replacement, purchase and installation of alternative energy resources and new HVAC systems, windows, doors, and lighting systems, electrical upgrades, and construction of new or replacement of old walkways and parking lots, among other things. New furniture, shelving and equipment, including computer equipment, can be purchased for new or newly reconfigured or renovated space. Renovations designed to provide accessibility for patrons with disabilities is a high priority.

There is a documented need of more than $2.2 billion for public library construction and renovation in New York State. The proposed 2009 Executive Budget includes $14 million in capital funds for the Public Library Construction Grant Program for 2009-2010.

Please contact Grace Kelly at the New York State Library's Division of Library Development at 518/474-4883 or gkelly@mail.nysed.gov for more information on the Public Library Construction Grant Program or visit the New York State Library website.

400 Great Discoveries in Albany

2009 marks the City of Albany's Quadricentennial, honoring the 400th anniversary of Captain Henry Hudson's voyage. Enter your own "Great Discovery" in the categories of Event, Place, Restaurant, Recreation or Activity, Arts and Culture, Architecture or History. You may submit as many entries as you like.

Prize winners will be drawn at random from those whose entries were selected for the list of 400 Great Discoveries in Albany. Prizes include a $400 cash prize, dinner for a family of four at DP-An American Brasserie, family 4-pack tickets to a show at the Times Union Center, and more!

Entry Deadline: April 1, 2009

Saturday, March 14, 2009

Antioch Library keeps going

An interesting article in the NY Times this week regarding the library at Antioch College. The College has been closed since last year but the library (with a smaller staff) has been kept going.

Video: Why Twitter is all the rage

A two minute video on how Twitter is the happening resource these days.

Friday, March 13, 2009

Federal Stimulus Package TOWN HALL FORUM

• How your community can benefit from the Stimulus Package
• What projects are eligible for funding
• Job and Business Opportunities

Wednesday, March 18, 2009
6-8 PM @ The College of St. Rose
Touhey Forum
Thelma P. Lally School of Education
1009 madison avenue, albany, NY

Please contact the office of
Senate Majority Leader Malcolm A. Smith at: (212) 298-5585

Other meetings across the state listed here.

President Obama’s Inauguration Topic of Albany Public Library Program on March 17

Albany Journalists, Councilman to Recall Their Experiences

The historic inauguration of the United States’ 44th president is the focus of a March 17 program at the Albany Public Library (APL). "Relive the Historic Day: Reflections on the Inauguration of Barack Obama as the 44th President of the United States" takes place at 12:15 p.m. in the large auditorium of the Main Library at 161 Washington Avenue. The public is invited to this free event.

Local journalists Paul Grondahl and Dennis Gaffney, who is also president of the APL Board of Trustees, and Albany Councilman Corey Ellis will share their experiences from the January 20 inauguration of President Barack Obama. All three men attended the inauguration in Washington, DC, and have many stories to tell about their experiences. The program will include a video presentation, produced by Grondahl, about the historic event.

This event is sponsored by the Friends of the Albany Public Library and is part of the Friends weekly "Noon Talk" programs, which feature book reviews, panel discussions, and programs of current interest to the community.

The Albany Public Library (APL) operates six locations serving the residents of Albany. Each month, more than 55,000 people use the libraries to borrow materials, attend programs, access computers, and research information. More than 90,000 books, DVDs, and other materials are circulated each month. APL is creating five new branches to better serve customers.

Thursday, March 12, 2009

Apply online for an extension to file state income tax return

Need an extension to file your personal state income tax return? Apply online for an automatic extension. It's free and easy to use. You'll receive an instant, printable confirmation that the Tax Department received your application.

To apply for an extension to file online, go here.

If you owe tax with your extension, you can pay it by:
- direct debit from a savings or checking account
- credit card (a convenience fee applies)
- printing a voucher and mailing a check

Wednesday, March 11, 2009

Revolutionary British search engine will be 'as important as Google'

By Claire Bates

A renowned British physicist is launching a new internet search engine in May, which experts said could be as important as Google.

Professor Stephen Wolfram, founder of software company Wolfram Research, announced that work was almost finished on the first phase of his 'computational knowledge engine.'

Most search engines like Google and Yahoo scan through billions of web pages for keywords or phrases and return a series of documents that may contain the answer to your question, or point you in the right direction.

'We can only answer questions that have been literally asked before. We can look things up, but we can’t figure anything new out,' Professor Wolfram said.

However, the London-born physicist claims his website 'Wolfram Alpha' can understand what you are looking for and calculate a single precise answer.

The entire article can be read at


Tuesday, March 10, 2009

FTC Warns Consumers About Economic Stimulus Scams

The Federal Trade Commission is warning consumers that they could get stung by an economic stimulus scam. The scams come in different forms.

Right now, on the Web and in e-mail, scammers are telling consumers they can help them qualify for a payment from President Obama’s economic stimulus package. All they have to do is provide a little information or a small payment.

E-mail messages may ask for bank account information so that the operators can deposit consumers’ share of the stimulus directly into their bank account. Instead, the scammers drain consumers’ accounts of money and disappear. Or bogus e-mail may appear to be from government agencies and ask for information to "verify" that you qualify for a payment. The scammers use that information to commit identity theft. Some e-mail scams don’t ask for information, but provide links to find out how to qualify for funds. By clicking on the links, consumers have downloaded malicious software or spyware that can be used to make them a victim of identity theft.

Webcast: Economic Stimulus Scams.

Monday, March 09, 2009

New Blog from the Librarians at National Public Radio

"NPR’s information provocateurs are emerging from the stacks to bring you a super-fresh perspective on what it’s like to be an NPR librarian. We’ll cover everything from pop-culture insanity and weird pronunciations to the history of NPR and libraries in the news.

...as a matter of fact blog.

ALA releases gaming toolkit

Libraries are changing and dynamic places, and no better evidence of that exists than the spread of gaming in the nation’s public, school and academic libraries.

In recognition of this trend and the increasing value of gaming to literacy improvement, the American Library Association, with assistance from a $1 million grant from the Verizon Foundation, has developed an online toolkit to aid librarians in serving this growing constituency.

The Librarian’s Guide to Gaming: An Online Toolkit for Building Gaming @ your library offers content contributed by expert gaming librarians across the country. The toolkit includes a wide range of resources to help librarians create, fund and evaluate gaming experiences in the library.

Sunday, March 08, 2009

Obama Temporary License Plates Newest Collectors Item

by Lynn Sweeton February 13, 2009 1:01 PM
Chicago Sun Times

WASHINGTON--The Land of Lincoln is joining the crowd making a buck off the popular son of Illinois, President Obama. Illinois Secretary of State Jesse White is selling Obama plates--good only for 60 days--for $50 a pair.

The Illinois Library Association will use the profits to help fund materials for library run summer reading programs for students.

In the first wave, the plates will be sold only to people from Illinois who have autos. For people who don't have cars--no matter where they live-- the souvenir plates can be purchased for $50 after April 17.

Saturday, March 07, 2009

Art for All

Adults and children of all ages are welcome to drop in at the Albany Institute on select Saturdays and Sundays to explore history and art through creativity.

Experience the works of art in our galleries and then join in art-making activities in the studio. Programs are held from 1:00 to 4:00 pm and are FREE with museum admission.

Next dates: March 14 & 21
April 11, 19 & 26
May 2, 9, 17

Friday, March 06, 2009

St. Patrick's Day Parade

Albany's 59th Annual St. Patrick's Day Parade takes place on Saturday, March 14, 2009. The Parade steps off at 2 pm at Quail Street and Central Avenue and travels down Washington Avenue to State Street to North Pearl Street.
Be sure to don your green apparel and have some fun! Click here for more.

Wednesday, March 04, 2009

Television Viewing in Infancy and Child Cognition

Since 1999, the American Academy of Pediatrics has recommended no screen media for children <2 years of age. Nevertheless, recent nationally representative data indicate that 68% of children <2 years of age use screen media on a typical day, and one quarter of these children have a television (TV) set in his or her bedroom. Additional data suggest most US-born infants <2 years of age watch between 1 and 2 hours of TV daily. Given the large number of infants who are regularly exposed to TV, and the large number of parents who believe that it is good for their development, it is important to determine the effects of TV viewing on the developing cognition of young children...

CONCLUSION. Television viewing in infancy does not seem to be associated with language or visual motor skills at 3 years of age.

http://pediatrics.aappublications.org/cgi/content/full/123/3/e370 Television viewing in infancy does not seem to be associated with language or visual motor skills at 3 years of age.

NYLA Legislative Alert

Dear Colleagues and Library Advocates,

State Budget negotiations are ramping up as both the Assembly and the Senate prepare to release their budget proposals by early next week. Despite the state receiving approximately $24.6 billion in federal stimulus funds including $2.4 billion for school aid over the next two years, Library Aid funding remains in jeopardy.

Next Tuesday, March 10th is Library Lobby Day> The library community is urged to make every effort to participate so we can have a strong showing in Albany that will demonstrate to public policymakers the urgent need to restore the proposed $18 million or 18% cut in Library Aid that will impact all types of libraries, public, school and college.

Full details about Pre-Lobby Day, Monday, March 9th and Library Lobby Day, Tuesday, March 10th can be found on NYLA's website at www.nyla.org. If you are interested in attending, contact your regional coordinator, a list can be found on NYLA's Lobby Day page.

In addition, a video of NYLA's Executive Director's appearance on Senator Liz Krueger's (D-Manhattan) cable show and NYLA's testimony before the Joint Legislative Budget Hearing can now be viewed by going to www.nyla.org under Headlines.

Also links to information about the federal stimulus package and how it impacts libraries and how libraries can apply for funding from the state can also be found on the NYLA website.

Tuesday, March 03, 2009

Money...and Managing it!

Economics got ya down? Have a little extra time on your hands? Drop by the Main Library on Wednesday, March 4th @9AM for Managing your Money, a workshop presented by SEFCU.
Stay after the program for some one-on-one assistance.

Please contact the Reference Department at 427-4303 for more information or to register. Space IS limited.

Staff Development Day - Library CLOSED March 5

All APL locations will be closed on Thursday, March 5, 2009 for Staff Development Day.

Does Breastfeeding Reduce the Risk of Sudden Infant Death Syndrome?

This study shows that breastfeeding reduced the risk of sudden infant death syndrome by ~50% at all ages throughout infancy.

Monday, March 02, 2009

The American Recovery and Reinvestment Act

The American Recovery and Reinvestment Act of 2009 was signed by President Barack Obama on February 17, 2009. This legislation provides a nearly $800 billion boost to the American Economy.

New York's Guide to the 2009 American Recovery and Reinvestment Act can found at www.economicrecovery.ny.gov. The web site includes details about the $24 billion spending plan, Cabinet members, press releases, and an email update request form.