Adventures of an InfoMage in Training
by Darci Chapman



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Adventures of an InfoMage in Training

Sunday, August 31, 2003

"Ikea bigger than the Bible. The Ikea catalogue is being printed in more copies than the Bible, according to Dagbladet.130 million catalogues are just around the corner, in 28 different languages. A total of 36 countries around the world are waiting to receive this year's catalogue, full of flat packed, cheap furniture."[]

Too bad their websites suck so much. That's probably the second most leading reason for the high demand of their catalog -- you can't find half the stuff they offer at their stores online. I only use their site when I'm desperate.

9:31:53 AM    comment []

Saturday, August 30, 2003

Well, it was bound to happen: people are speaking out on both sides of the controversy surrounding the salary offered Molly Raphael for the Director of Multnomah County Libraries.

There is a letter to the editor that says "salary increase is out of line" while another says "end the brouhaha over salary". Then there's the editorial by Susan Nielsen who says Ms. Raphael "should get a lawyer." Meanwhile, here's what the three county commissioners opposed to the salary offer have to say.

11:52:00 PM    comment []

This looks to be a fascinating report; need to file away for future use regarding issues around the "Digital Divide."

Internet Use by Region in the United States. This Pew & The Internet Report has been making the rounds. The Pew Internet & American Life Project has tracked the growth of Internet usage in the United States, from just under half of American adults in 2000 to about 59% of adults at the end of 2002. These statistics have continually shown that Internet penetration in the United States has been and continues to be uneven. We have discussed in other reports why this growth has not been evenly distributed among those in various racial and ethnic groups, those of various ages, and among those with different levels of education and income. This report explores the reasons behind the uneven distribution of Internet penetration by geographical region. And it looks at variations in use of the Internet by region. The following table outlines the disparities in Internet penetration among 12 regions of the country in 2002. (California is considered separately because Internet access and use vary dramatically from neighboring states.) []

11:17:53 PM    comment []

Well, this new layout is something I can live with for now. I will spare you the tale of the trials and tribulations I suffered to just get this much done ;-) But, it's got three columns which is the key thing.

In other news, I'm changing the focus of this blog to cover primarily my grad school experiences and musings. As time allows, I will scour for library news -- possibly limiting my submissions to local (Pacific Northwest) news...

I'll need to spend a bit of time to re-populate that right column -- that simply means revisiting Jenny's site (aka The Shifted Librarian) :-) Might as well get to it!

8:57:26 PM    comment []

Sunday, August 24, 2003

So on Friday evening my hubby, sister, and I were having dinner with friends. They asked more or less in passing if I had "heard about the librarian from Clackamas county that was making over $180,000 per year." I said no, but I did say that at the very least, it had to be a director's salary... and conversation went on to other things...

I've been looking for a news article or some other mention off and on throughout the weekend but it wasn't until I went to the Oregonian's webiste and only searched on "librarian salary" (dropping Clackamas) that I finally found the article that explained it all. It turns out that Molly Raphael has been hired as the director of Multnomah County Library (which services all of Portland and its immediate surrounds) and for a salary of $138,000. And the only reason that this became a newsworthy item is because Oregon (like so many other states) is in the midst of a budget crisis which of course, trickles down to the local level.

I was curious about Molly Raphael and ran across this article that announced her leaving the D.C. library system. It was very interesting to get such two distinct views on the same story. I especially liked reading about the comparisons between the two systems, including this bit:

For instance, she said, the District's library system has a budget of $27 million for a 27-library system that serves about 570,000 people; Multnomah County's library system has a budget of $45.5 million for a 17-library system that serves about 660,000. Further, she said, Multnomah's staff is 50 percent larger than the District's, and its annual circulation -- the number of items borrowed from the library, including books, videotapes, CDs and DVDs -- is 16 million to the District's 1.2 million.

Of course, none of the "high performance" stats made it into the first article. Do I think it's worth paying someone $138,000/year to run the Multnomah County library system? Damn straight I do.


7:02:58 PM    comment []

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