A Rare Book Collector’s Guide to the College Library Book Sale

As both a reader and a book collector, I’m a big fan of college library book sales. Held annually or bi-annually at colleges and universities across the country, these sales convert library discards and unwanted donations into desperately needed funds. Uncluttered by the kinds of books that glut public library sales, the college library book sale paints an interesting picture of town-gown reading habits.

The Millions : A Rare Book Collector’s Guide to the College Library Book Sale.

Supreme Court (in Golan) decides it is OK to take works out of the public domain and, retroactively, put them under copyright

We’ve been talking about the Golan case, and its possible impact on culture, for years. If you’re unfamiliar with it, it’s the third in a line of cases, starting with the Eldred case, to challenge aspects of copyright law as violating the First Amendment. The key point in the case was questioning whether or not the US could take works out of the public domain and put them under copyright. The US had argued it needed to do this under a trade agreement to make other countries respect our copyrights. Of course, for those who were making use of those public domain works, it sure seemed like a way to unfairly lock up works that belonged to the public. It was difficult to see how retroactively taking works out of the public domain could fit into the traditional contours of copyright law… but today… that’s exactly what happened (pdf).

Supreme Court Chooses SOPA/PIPA Protest Day To [negatively impact] The Public Domain | Techdirt.

TEDTalks DVD on Demand

Spreading ideas just got easier. Today TED announces DVD On Demand, which allows users to create custom TEDTalk DVDs from a library of over 700 available talks. Each disc holds up to six talks, each with the option to order with subtitles in up to 32 languages. DVDs, available for $9.99, can be shipped to and watched in any region of the world.

“By putting our TEDTalks online for free, we’ve helped spread ideas to over half a billion viewers,” said June Cohen, Executive Producer of TED Media. “But not everyone has access to the internet, nor are they necessarily tech-savvy enough to stream talks when they do. There are times when you need to watch talks off-line. And our DVDs – think of them as ‘mix tapes’ of talks – are a simple alternative: inexpensive, highly personalized and easy to play on any DVD player.”

TED Blog | Announcing: TEDTalks DVD on Demand!.

Arizona Bans Books –> Oh my

Arizona has found the Tuscon Unifed School District’s Mexican American studies program in violation of a ruling that prohibits courses and classes that ‘promote the overthrow of the United States government, promote resentment toward a race or class of people, are designed primarily for pupils of a particular ethnic group or advocate ethnic solidarity instead of the treatment of pupils as individuals.’

Along with William Shakespeare’s The Tempest, banned books include Rethinking Columbus: The Next 500 Years, Pedagogy of the Oppressed by Brazilian educator Paolo Freire, Occupied America: A History of Chicanos’ by Rodolfo Acuña, Chicano!: The History of the Mexican Civil Rights Movement by Arturo Rosales, 500 Years of Chicano History in Pictures, by Elizabeth Martinez and Critical Race Theory a textbook by Richard Delgado and Jean Stefancic.

Arizona Bans Books – The Rumpus.net.

Be wary of the Research Works Act (RWA)

Especially if you’d like your friendly, neighborhood academic library to remain a viable research center, able to help those who want or need to the help:

This is a bill to, it says, “ensure the continued publication and integrity of peer-reviewed research works by the private sector”, where the important phrase is “private sector” — it’s purpose is to guarantee that for-profit corporations retain control over the publication of scientific information.

via Elsevier = Evil