Thursday, February 26, 2009

New survey: The Teaching Role: Experiences of Canada’s Library Staff

As posted to the CALL-L and various other listservs, Heidi Julien from the School of Library and Information Studies at the University of Alberta is doing a study entitled "The Teaching Role: Experiences of Canada’s Library Staff". The study is funded by the Social Sciences and Humanities Research Council of Canada.

From the blurb:
Do you work in a library in Canada? Are you involved in information literacy instruction or customer training at your library? If you answered yes to both these questions, you are invited to participate in a Canadian survey exploring the experiences of library staff as instructors/trainers. Please consider contributing to this survey. It will take approximately 10 minutes to complete, and your experiences will make an important contribution to knowledge. If you are interested in learning more about this study or if you wish to participate please follow this link:
I'm not sure I know a law librarian or tech that hasn't dealt with training in some capacity: new research products, orientations & tours for new staff, etc. So not that big a big stretch we could take this survey, right? :)

Wednesday, February 25, 2009

Bulls Eye on Libraries in Bad Economy

Libraries of all sorts are under attack in our present economy. I think we've all known for years that when the going gets rough, Library services pay the price, but several recent events seem almost unprecedented. Consider:
I don't even care to guess what's happening to our friends in the public library sector. They were under tight guard before the economy tanked. I'm also not sure I find comfort in the fact other professions are facing similar problems.

Unfortunately in tight times, deadwood gets cleared. It's almost an excuse for decision makers to remove elements of the system they don't value or respect. That's not to say that all organizations are like the WSJ, but that's what Librarians & Library Techs are up against.

If there's ever been a point in time when clarity of library services must be addressed, it's now. Putting your skills to use outside of libraries is another option, and obviously the direction I've chosen personally; however, if you're staying to fight, and especially when you do have an employer that values your work -- I would say now is the time to re-prove your value. Even if it means re-inventing your services.

2009 is going to be a bad period for Libraries - all types of libraries. And not just because of the economy, but because some employers see our services (and profession for that matter) as deadwood. We can hold our breath for a library bailout, or... we can fire ourselves up and do something at a micro level.

My suggestion? Start today, because tomorrow just might bring a pink slip.

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Wednesday, February 18, 2009

Techshow 2009

I have new post up over on the Stem blog about my (first time!) participation in ABA Techshow 2009.

The early bird deadline for registration, which saves you $250, is Feb 28th.

Also, if you're thinking about attending and a member of the LSBC, there is a promo code (#EP929) at the end of this Notice to the Profession published in November.

See you in Chicago! :)

Friday, February 13, 2009

Sexy Librarians!

In honour of tomorrow being Valentines Day, Library Journal has produced a Compendium of Sexy Librarianness.

Oh come on, don't even question it... Of course we are! I've always felt it was the bald noggin in my picture that was doing it. I know not all librarians are so blessed, but everyone must have something to aspire to. And the hair-in-a-bun look? it's just so passé .

Well, it was a good chuckle anyway... :)

Monday, February 09, 2009

New Superior Courts of BC Website

The BC Superior Courts (Supreme Court and Court of Appeal) recently relaunched their website. The new site is colourful, clean, and incorporates photos from courthouses across the province.

Some notable improvements and features:
  • Neutral search template right on the homepage
  • Decisions open in new tabs
  • User can choose to view the case as is or with search terms highlighted
  • Browse decisions by name, neutral cite, date
  • Advanced search template lets you search by judge/master, neutral cite, full text, date, registry, docket number, and court level
  • Boolean searches are supported; the default is a phrase search
  • Judge/Master field offers drop-down choices for last names
  • Advanced operators include wildcards (asterisk), proximity searching, Boolean (though you must spell out AND, OR, and NOT -- i.e., an ampersand for AND will not work)

All in all, the site looks fresh and modern. There's only one thing left on my wishlist: site search.

While the judgment search function has been greatly improved, there's still no site search. With such a wealth of information contained in the court's non-judgment subpages (for instance, FAQs, lists of judges, annual reports, links, practice directions, etc.), it's a shame that users are forced to browse, and don't have the option to search.

One last note: The new BC Courts site renders better in IE and Safari than in Firefox, but searching appears to work fine across all three.

Wednesday, February 04, 2009

Quickscribe Manual Updates for January

There were several Quickscribe legislative manual updates during January:
Remember to check for daily updates to BC legislation at!

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