Annoyed Librarian
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Happy Birthday to Me!

Happy birthday to me! Happy birthday to me! Happy birthday, dear AL, Happy birthday to me! In case I didn't mention it, it's my birthday! The AL turned 4. Actually, the AL turned 4 three days ago, but the party is tonight, so I'm celebrating now. And what a party it promises to be. Chip and I and all the merry LJ gang plan to dance the night away in the rotating ballroom on the top floor of the Library Journal building. I love big band music. Harry James, here I come! Drinking champagne, whirling around the dance floor, taking quick breaks to catch my breath while gazing out on the bright city lights. Everyone's invited! And my dance card promises to be full. Though escorted by my companion, I've promised Chip many dances. I warned him that the more I dance, the more he'll have to massage my little feet at work, but he's such a devoted factotum and majordomo he just doesn't care. He's like Jeeves, except blond and buff, and maybe not as smart. Brains aren't everything, though. Just ...
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Bring on the PhDs!

I've written a lot about the librarian shortage, sorry, I mean the librarian job shortage over the years. Librarians have it bad, I know. Between the ALA and library school propaganda, far too many people have been recruited into the field, which has led to lower salaries and un - or underemployment for lots of librarians. But it could be worse. If there's a group of people more clueless about job prospects than librarians and library school professors, it's English PhDs and literature professors. According to a column in the Chronicle of Higher Education, this past December saw the worst Modern Language Association (MLA) convention ever in terms of available jobs. "It is official, confirmed by the Modern Language Association itself: This will be the worst year for academic job seekers in language and literature since the MLA started keeping records more than three decades ago. I hope you're not on the market this year. You may be good, but so are lots of other people. And the ...
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Gale’s Hopeless Request

The library world has been slightly aflutter the last week or two over Gale's "open letter" to librarians criticizing Ebsco for bidding higher than Gale for distribution rights to Time publications. Wait. No. That's not quite it. Gale criticized Ebsco for seeking exclusive distribution rights in the first place, while Gale supposedly does not seek such rights to keep publications more affordable for libraries and more available to the public. According to the second link in this LJ wrap up, Ebsco denies the charge and claims that Time sought the exclusive contract. Even if that's true, Ebsco could have turned it down and demanded the same non-exclusive rights that Gale claims it sought. It hardly changes the fact that Ebsco likes exclusive rights that monopolize content, thus driving up prices and increasing their profits at the expense of libraries and the public. That's what corporations do, of course, so we shouldn't be surprised. As befitting a publisher and vendor ...
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