Friday, November 30, 2001


Colorado Supreme Court to Hear Tattered Cover Case:

On December 5 at 8:30 a.m., the Colorado Supreme Court will hear oral arguments in the Tattered Cover Book Store's appeal to protect the privacy rights of bookstore customers.

On October 20, 2000, Denver District Court Judge J. Stephen Phillips ordered Tattered Cover to reveal the contents of one of its shipping envelopes that police had removed from the trash of a suspected drug dealer. Law enforcement authorities seeking the records asserted that they would assist in a case involving the manufacture of methamphetamines. The books were found at the site of an illegal methamphetamine laboratory.

The Denver bookstore has argued that protecting the privacy of customers' book purchase records was a crucial First Amendment fight . . .

More info on the case from the Tattered Cover site.

[Chicago Reader]

One Man's Attempt to Save the 16mm Film Collection of the Chicago Public Library:

Several months ago, when Chicagoan Jim Finn discovered that the Chicago Public Library was closing its 16-millimeter film collection -- not surprising given declining use and the cost of upkeep -- he started doing everything he could to rally public interest in preserving this material, doing something comparable to what writer Nicholson Baker has recently done for newspapers. Screening this weekend is the second of two extended programs showcasing a small portion of the library's collection -- a rich array of material ranging from documentaries to children's films to one of Luis Buñuel's best Mexican features. It looks like a compendium of priceless, irreplaceable work.

Where else could you catch Fat Albert: Junk Food (1976, 14 min.), Madeline (1965, 10 min.), and The Wonder of Dolphins (1974, 11 min.) all in one afternoon? I wish more people would encourage their library to drag out its dusty-but-fascinating holdings and shake 'em for the world . . .
Radio EFF:

A series of short radio pieces from the Electronic Frontier Foundation on online privacy, the Dmitri Sklyarov and DeCSS cases, the DMCA's threat to academic freedom and other topics.
A useful list of links re: the recent DeCSS decision.

Thanks to Politech.
Off-topic but much-needed comic relief: How to Talk Like a Situationist:

2. Always use the most obscure language possible. Get lots of big scholarly words from a dictionary and use them often:

Poor: "Things are bad."

Better: "The formative mechanism of culture amounts to a reification of human activities which fixates the living and models the transmission of experience from one generation to another on the transmission of commodities; a reification which strives to ensure the past's domination over the future."

Thanks to wood s lot.

Thursday, November 29, 2001

Wednesday, November 28, 2001

Between the Stacks: a series of five minute radio reports detailing "major events in the realms of intellectual property, copyright, rights online, censorship, and so on" by Fiona Bradley.
Library Juice 4:43 is available.
Bronx Traveling Library

Branch Libraries in the Bronx: A History with Selected Photographs

Detailed public library history with some beautiful photos from the New York Public Library.

The online version of their recent exhibit Utopia: The Search for the Ideal Society in the Western World is also still available.

"He who destroyes a good Booke, kills reason it selfe"

"An exhibition of books which have survived fire, the sword and the censors," originally staged in 1955 at the University of Kansas and recreated online in 1998 in honor of the 50th anniversary of the Library Bill of Rights.

H-Utopia Discussion Network:

H-Utopia, like the 25-year-old Society for Utopian Studies, is devoted to discussion of utopianism in all its forms, from literary expression to policy analysis to architectural criticism to activism. Our focus is on the forms, contents, and influence of utopian/dystopian thinking.

A facet of H-Net, Humanties and Social Science Online. The Society for Utopian Studies links page is worth a look, too.
[BBC News]

Kafka's Library Returns to Prague:

The personal library of author Franz Kafka is to be returned to his native Prague. The manuscripts, including some of the first editions of his work, had been owned by car giant Porsche. The German auto manufacturer said it had acquired his library from an antiquarian book dealer in Stuttgart with a view to handing it over to the Franz Kafka Society in the Czech Republic. The collection, which comprises some 1,000 books and other documents, has been valued at around £80,000 . . .

Monday, November 26, 2001

A searchable bibliography on theology and peace work from Germany's Institutue for Theology and Peace. Although the Institute is an arm of the Catholic Church's Military Chaplaincy, they don't appear to be your average sky pilots.