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Government United States Digital Education

President Obama Nominates New Librarian of Congress Who Supports Open Access (teleread.com) 188

Dr. Carla Hayden, CEO of the Enoch Pratt Free Library in Baltimore and a former president of the American Library Association, is President Obama's nominee for Librarian of Congress. What a contrast to long-time LoC Librarian James Billington, a stuffy old academic who hated e-books and was so far out of touch that he liked faxing more than e-mail. According to President Obama, "Dr. Hayden has devoted her career to modernizing libraries so that everyone can participate in today's digital culture." Dr. Hayden was a fierce opponent of the Patriot Act and believes strongly in speaking out against surveillance. What's more, she would be the 14th Librarian of Congress, in charge of the Copyright Office, and the first woman and first African-American to hold the position.
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President Obama Nominates New Librarian of Congress Who Supports Open Access

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  • by Anonymous Coward on Wednesday February 24, 2016 @05:15PM (#51577747)

    This really should be left up to the next elected president, if we are to believe the do-nothing blow-hards in Congress.

    • This really should be left up to the next elected president, if we are to believe the do-nothing blow-hards in Congress.

      Joe? Joe Biden is that you? I remember what you said back in '92... Sounds a lot like you.

      • by Anonymous Coward on Thursday February 25, 2016 @02:42AM (#51580751)

        Might want to lay off the Fox News drivel. Here's what he actually said:

        "I believe that so long as the public continues to split its confidence between the branches, compromise is the responsible course both for the White House and for the Senate,” he said. “Therefore I stand by my position, Mr. President, if the President [George H.W. Bush] consults and cooperates with the Senate or moderates his selections absent consultation, then his nominees may enjoy my support as did Justices Kennedy and Souter."

        And further clarified because partisan hacks like you keep taking his words out-of-context (Oh, Fox wouldn't do *that*, would they?):

        "Nearly a quarter century ago, in June 1992, I gave a lengthy speech on the Senate floor about a hypothetical vacancy on the Supreme Court. Some critics say that one excerpt of my speech is evidence that I oppose filling a Supreme Court vacancy in an election year. This is not an accurate description of my views on the subject. Indeed, as I conclude in the same statement critics are pointing to today, urged the Senate and White House to work together to overcome partisan differences to ensure the Court functions as the Founding Fathers intended. That remains my position today."

        Seriously, turn off Fox and grow a brain.

    • by rsborg ( 111459 )

      This really should be left up to the next elected president, if we are to believe the do-nothing blow-hards in Congress.

      You know the unsaid GOP Congresscritters' words: This should be left up to the next elected president if that person is a Republican . Believe you me, if Sanders or Clinton get elected, they'll find yet another reason to move their goalposts.

      Best way to win is not to play their game: Recess time!

      • Of course, they'll declare that Clinton or Sanders will be a one term president only. Then within a few months start shouting for impeachment hearings on the basis that the president is a poopie head. When that dies down it will be midterm elections and so they can't possibly allow any consideration of nominees that close to an election.

    • Of course, since the constitution only allows the president to work for 3 years out of 4. So says the congress that works for 0 years out of 4.

    • Nah, the republicans won't block the appointment of a librarian, none of their voters care about libraries after all, those are for people who know what books are.

  • The next President should pick the Librarian!!!

  • by rsborg ( 111459 ) on Wednesday February 24, 2016 @05:33PM (#51577849) Homepage

    Clearly we should find out: http://warhammer40k.wikia.com/... [wikia.com]

  • Wow... classy (Score:2, Insightful)

    by imidan ( 559239 )

    What a contrast to long-time LoC Librarian James Billington, a stuffy old academic who hated e-books and was so far out of touch that he liked faxing more than e-mail.

    Maybe we could take this opportunity to express excitement about the incoming librarian rather than shit all over her predecessor. No matter what you thought of the guy, this is not a great time to say it.

    • by epine ( 68316 )

      No matter what you thought of the guy, this is not a great time to say it.

      What's the matter? Can't even work yourself up to rathering [newhumanist.org.uk], much less something usefully concrete?

      Monday, Tuesday, Wednesday, Slownewsday, Thursday, Friday, Saturday, Sunday.

      • by imidan ( 559239 )

        I don't entirely understand the reference, not having read that particular book of Dennett's.

        But I don't believe I'm trying to introduce some kind of false dichotomy, which as far as I can make out, is what you're talking about. I'm suggesting that the event of the appointment of a new Librarian of Congress is not a particularly good venue for denigrating the retired one. The old guy already stepped down, and the contextless sniping of the summary just seems spiteful. It's also completely without support

  • Oook? (Score:5, Funny)

    by wonkey_monkey ( 2592601 ) on Wednesday February 24, 2016 @05:44PM (#51577927) Homepage

    Oook? Ook.

  • by Krishnoid ( 984597 ) on Wednesday February 24, 2016 @05:49PM (#51577967) Journal

    With NSF's public access policy [nsf.gov] in place, PubMed [nih.gov] provides open-access to a lot of journal papers in a variety of formats, including EPUB.

    I've found the PubMed site itself to be one of the best-laid-out reference web sites I've used, period -- its links to external journals, full and partial papers in various formats, and ability to bookmark items of interest, are all very functional and easy to access.

    • Bit of 90s styling though.

      • by KGIII ( 973947 )

        You say that as if it is a bad thing. Are you suggesting like buttons, a PM system, and the opportunity to share it on other sites, perhaps? 'Cause I kinda like it like it is and it's kind of imperative that it is as it's likely to allow access with the fewest resources including physical capacity.

        Given its location, it's almost certainly likely to "work" (for some semblance of the word) for blind people, for example. I'm sure if it didn't, someone would be yelling about it and rightfully so, I guess. Do th

  • by Anonymous Coward


    Billington doubled the size of the Library’s traditional analog collections while simultaneously creating a massive new digital Library of Congress providing official legislative information, primary documents of American history, international cultural treasures and a host of web-based innovations such as electronic copyright registration, mobile access to reading materials for the blind and physically handicapped and modernized cataloging standards for libraries nationwide.

    He established the National Book Festival, the John W. Kluge Center and its Nobel-level John W. Kluge Prize for Achievement in the Study of Humanity, the world’s largest and most state-of-the-art audio-visual conservation center, the Gershwin Prize for Popular Song and other programs to "get the champagne out of the bottle" for the American public.

    Billington also raised half a billion dollars in private support to supplement Congressional appropriations during a period of exponential growth, and despite a 30 percent reduction in personnel.

    The second link has even more about that "stuffy old academic". It really does a disservice to him and to Slashdot for yaelk to base the story on Dr. Carla Hayden's nomination on some noname jackass's blog. My hopes that Slashdot was going to improve its article selection with the new ownership is fast fading.

  • stuffy old academic? (Score:3, Informative)

    by slashdime ( 818069 ) on Wednesday February 24, 2016 @07:22PM (#51578623)
    "What a contrast to long-time LoC Librarian James Billington, a stuffy old academic who hated e-books and was so far out of touch that he liked faxing more than e-mail."

    What the fucking fuck. I read this sentence and my bullshit detector went so that I went to https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/... [wikipedia.org] and read for myself. Please learn to read and form your opinion instead of trusting this asshat submitter.

    I read over his entire career and I can't really find much disagreeable with this guy.
    During his tenure at the Library of Congress, Billington championed no-fee electronic services,[12] beginning with:

    American Memory in 1990, which became The National Digital Library in 1994, providing free access online to digitized American history and culture resources with curatorial explanations for K-12 education

    THOMAS.gov website in 1994 to provide free public access to U.S. federal legislative information with ongoing updates; and CONGRESS.gov website to provide a state-of-the-art framework for both Congress and the public in 2012

    Educational portal for K-12 teachers and students in 1996, and subsequently new prizes and programs for advancing literacy in 2013

    Online social media presence for the Library beginning in 2007, which expanded to include blogs, Flickr, establishment of Flickr Commons, Facebook, iTunesU, Pinterest, RSS, Twitter, YouTube and other new media channels. Twitter donated its digital archive to the Library of Congress in 2010; its vice president of engineering, Greg Pass noted, "I am very grateful that Dr. Billington and the Library recognize the value of this information."

    "eCo" online copyright registration, status-checking, processing, and electronic file upload systems in 2008

    The World Digital Library in 2009, in association with UNESCO and 181 partners in 81 countries, to make oline copies of professionally curated primary materials of the world's varied cultures free available in multiple languages.

    Resource Description and Access (RDA) in 2010, a new cataloguing standard for the digital age implements in 2013

    BIBFRAME in 2011, a data model for bibliographic description to provide a foundation for those depending on bibliographic data shared by the Library with partners on the web and in the broader networked world

    National Jukebox in 2011 to provide streaming free online access to more than 10,000 out-of-print music and spoken word recordings.

    BARD in 2013, digital talking books mobile app for Braille and Audio Reading Downloads in partnership with the Library's National Library Service for the blind and physically handicapped, that enables free downloads of audio and Braille books to mobile devices via the Apple App Store.
  • This is government over-reach gone mad, There's no need for a "secretary of the length of a football field" or a knight guardian of "areas the size of Belgium" or a minister for the "mass of an SUV".

    Where does it end ? Justice presiding over Wiffles ?

  • I'm confused why this is a good thing. I would personally side with the old guy. Some new age hipster coming in and ocr'ing all books and handing them over to Amazon is not "progress". It's indebting yourself. Email is also anything but secure, and was never meant to be. It's proliferation without real sender security layers existing on top of it are still a problem today. Believe it or not, fax is actually still more secure. That's why most government offices still don't email anything of significance.

The 11 is for people with the pride of a 10 and the pocketbook of an 8. -- R.B. Greenberg [referring to PDPs?]