VTDigger: How libraries across Vermont are continuing to serve people despite a pandemic

VTDigger: How libraries across Vermont are continuing to serve people despite a pandemic. “Since the beginning of the pandemic, Vermont’s public libraries have figured out how to serve their communities despite mandatory closings and limitations. Initially, like every institution in Vermont, libraries across the state shut down in early March to help combat Covid-19. But in mid-April, libraries found ways to reach people — through curbside services and expanded digital resources. In the months since, the individuality of each of Vermont’s libraries has shone through.”

National libraries have potential to play crucial role in promoting interaction between nations: Al Kuwari (The Peninsula)

The Peninsula: National libraries have potential to play crucial role in promoting interaction between nations: Al Kuwari. “National libraries have the potential to play a crucial role in promoting constructive interaction and sharing knowledge between nations, said H E Dr Hamad bin Abdulaziz Al Kuwari, Minister of State and President of Qatar National Library, while speaking at a virtual forum recently. Qatar National Library and the United Nations Institute for Training and Research (UNITAR) held the forum on ‘Cultural Diplomacy: The Role of National Libraries in Developing Nations,’ and brought together government leaders, foreign ministers, high commissioners and independent policy advisers.”

Phys .org: Library pandemic restrictions showcase the importance of digital collections and the advantages of open access

Phys .org: Library pandemic restrictions showcase the importance of digital collections and the advantages of open access. “While registering more than 4.6 million downloads of its Open Access publications in 2019, the Australian National University (ANU) Press has experienced an average 44% increase in its monthly download numbers from March 2020, as COVID-19 lockdowns have become enforced around the world. Similarly, in May 2020, the Natural History Museum (NHM) in the United Kingdom (UK) has registered a staggering increase in individual record and dataset downloads of 52% and 38% respectively, which amounted, in absolute terms, to 379.69 millions records and 7,328 datasets in this period alone.”

Washington Post: Librarians alarmed about coronavirus safety at D.C.’s reopened public libraries

Washington Post: Librarians alarmed about coronavirus safety at D.C.’s reopened public libraries. “When the District’s public libraries began gradually reopening in late May, many residents rushed to check out books for the first time in six weeks. By mid-July, the library was opening its doors for six hours a day, five days a week, for patrons who could come inside to borrow items and spend time using public computers at 14 locations. But librarians say the reopening has been poorly handled, exposing both staff members and the public to potential coronavirus risks. They also say library managers have kept staff in the dark about colleagues who come down with the virus and have struggled with cleaning protocols and mask requirements.”

Crux: New Vatican Library website aims to serve scholars, entice curious

Crux: New Vatican Library website aims to serve scholars, entice curious. “The Vatican Library has revamped its website to serve scholars better and facilitate navigation for the curious…. Some of the new features, [Msgr. Cesare Pasini] said, include more powerful and expanded search functions, and registered researchers can now easily ask staff questions and order digital reproductions of manuscripts, texts and other materials from the libraries collections.”

National Library of New Zealand: Introducing the Library Loudhailer

National Library of New Zealand: Introducing the Library Loudhailer . “The first podcast off the rank will be a conversation with Paul Diamond, one of the curators of the Pūkana exhibition (Te Ihi, Te Wehi, Te Wana – Moments in Māori performance) currently on show at the National Library in Wellington until the 30th of July 2020. We talk about developing the exhibition, what Paul learnt about the exhibition process and the joy of working in a team. Among Paul’s whirlwind description of the exhibition, he elaborates on the intricacies and purpose of the traditional Māori carved karetao (wooden puppets), delves into the power of haka, looks at the photography of Māori school pupils by Ans Westra, and grapples with the explosion that is the te reo singing heavy metal band Alien Weaponry.”

The Verge: Librarians Turned Google Forms Into The Unlikely Platform For Virtual Escape Rooms

The Verge: Librarians Turned Google Forms Into The Unlikely Platform For Virtual Escape Rooms. “On the day the Peters Township Public Library in McMurray, Pennsylvania, was supposed to unveil a superhero-themed escape room, the library had to close its doors due to the coronavirus pandemic. With no physical location to work with, librarian Sydney Krawiec started to devise an alternative: a digital escape room created in Google Forms.”

Nonprofit Quarterly: Libraries Face Reopening Dilemma as Pandemic Escalates

Nonprofit Quarterly: Libraries Face Reopening Dilemma as Pandemic Escalates. “Schools aren’t the only public institutions locked in debate over the need to reopen amid skyrocketing coronavirus infections nationwide. Libraries are facing the same dilemma. Library services are more critical than ever as COVID-19 continues affecting communities across the US. Yet as library systems eye reopening to the public, the surge of new coronavirus cases in most states could keep doors closed for months to come.”

Times Higher Education: Creating and supporting digital archives to improve access and research

Times Higher Education: Creating and supporting digital archives to improve access and research. “Now more than ever, there is a demand for universities to make available content in digital form from archives and collections that include books, primary sources and multimedia material. However, the cost of this type of digital transformation is considerable. To make the job easier, Jisc, the UK education and research technology solutions not-for-profit, is bringing together libraries, publishers and academic institutions to make digital collections more accessible.”

Route Fifty: Libraries Begin Partial Reopening as Covid-19 Cases Surge

Route Fifty: Libraries Begin Partial Reopening as Covid-19 Cases Surge. “Some libraries, including the Wheaton Public Library outside of Chicago and eight branches in New York City, will soon begin offering ‘grab and go’ services, giving patrons access to a limited area to return or pick up materials. The Brown County Library in central Wisconsin is open for computer use by appointment only, while the Sitka Public Library in Alaska plans to welcome patrons but enforce a ‘no lingering’ rule as well as close three days per week for extended cleaning.”

Institute of Museum and Library Services: Mellon Foundation Invests $1.5 Million in Federal COVID-19 Research Project to Support Libraries, Museums Reopening

Institute of Museum and Library Services: Mellon Foundation Invests $1.5 Million in Federal COVID-19 Research Project to Support Libraries, Museums Reopening. “The Institute of Museum and Library Services today announced the receipt of a $1,500,000 grant from The Andrew W. Mellon Foundation to support materials research for collections care and the reopening of libraries and museums during the COVID-19 pandemic. As libraries and museums around the country begin to resume operations and reopen to the public, the need for clear information to support the handling of core museum, library, and archival materials has become increasingly urgent.”

New York Times: Libraries Strive to Stay ‘Community Living Rooms’ as They Reopen

New York Times: Libraries Strive to Stay ‘Community Living Rooms’ as They Reopen. “Libraries around the country are tiptoeing toward reopening, but they’re not just trying to figure out how to safely lend out books. These are community hubs where parents bring their toddlers for story time, where people come to use the computer, where book groups meet. Now all of that has to be rethought.”

Publishers Weekly: Changes Loom as Public Libraries Begin to Reopen

Publishers Weekly: Changes Loom as Public Libraries Begin to Reopen . “After three months of an unprecedented lockdown to mitigate the spread of Covid-19, public libraries across the U.S. are now in the process of reopening. A recent American Library Association membership survey found 37% of respondents expect a phased reopening to begin in June or July, with 47% still unsure when their buildings will reopen to the public. But whenever that happens, the public libraries that will emerge from this historic pause will be changed from the ones that closed their doors in March, librarians tell PW, both in the short term, and into the future.”

COVID-19: A camel library takes remote learning to new levels (ReliefWeb)

ReliefWeb: COVID-19: A camel library takes remote learning to new levels. “A camel library is giving children out of school in some of Ethiopia’s most remote villages a unique opportunity to continue reading and learning, despite COVID-19 school closures. Save the Children first began the camel library in 2010. The programme includes 21 camels, which are traditionally used by communities in the Somali region of Ethiopia to transport goods across the hot lowland areas. Camels can carry up to 200 storybooks at a time in wooden boxes strapped to their backs. The project currently reaches over 22,000 children in 33 villages.”

Duke University Libraries: Putting the ‘Global’ Back Into Global Pandemic, Part I

Duke University Libraries: Putting the ‘Global’ Back Into Global Pandemic, Part I. “In order to help foster a more informed and compassionate approach to the current global health crisis, the subject specialists of Duke Libraries’ International and Area Studies Department have decided to devote a series of blog posts to the topic of plagues, epidemics, and pandemics in each of the world regions for which they collect materials and about which they offer reference and library instruction. Our goal is not to provide exhaustive coverage of the topic, but merely to suggest one or two resources—preferably those available online and in English—that each subject specialist has found particularly meaningful or useful in helping him or her to understand the role that infectious diseases have played in the countries, continents, and world areas for which s/he is responsible.”