Friday, August 31, 2007

Uncontrolled Vocabulary #10 - A good time to talk about timid librarians

Uncontrolled Vocabulary #10 is now available for download. Here's a direct link to the mp3.

You can subscribe to the show via the podcast feed (now available at the iTunes Music Store):

On the call:

Greg Schwartz, Louisville Free Public Library
Julian Clark, Georgetown University Law Library
Laura Carscaddon, University of Arizona
Ryan Deschamps, Halifax Public Library
Mary Carmen Chimato, North Carolina State University
Joshua M. Neff, Johnson County Public Library
Mickey Coalwell, Northeast Kansas Library System
Chadwick Seagraves, Private Academic Library Network of Indiana
Chris Zammarelli, Brookings Institution

Links to the show topics:

1. More on unconferences from Stephen Francoeur

2. More on Alms for Jihad ( - courtesy of Library Stuff)

3. Will The Response Of The Library Profession To The Internet Be Self-Immolation? (Special Libraries Cataloging)
Where's the Threat (What I Learned Today)

4. Are librarians timid?
Ask for What You Want (Library Journal)
Easy for you to say (Gather No Dust)

5. Teen hacks 'useless' Govt porn filter (ABC News (Australia))
84 million dollar porn filter circumvented by teen in 30 minutes (

6. 2 New York prisoners sue to get their banned religious books back (International Herald Tribune)

7. BookSwim
BookSwim (It's All Good)

8. Slam the Boards! (Answer Board Librarians)

One quick note about Slam the Boards that didn't come out in my explanation: It's a one day event scheduled for Monday, September 10th.


SMKVT said...

Finally catching up on UnVocab #10 after live participation passed me by again.

Since I did submit the BookSwim link, I'll offer the comment that the take that I had on it was not really about the competition for libraries.

I am much more intrigued by the fact that there are libraries that are using their own NetFlix accounts to supply things to patrons that they could not possibly justify purchasing for their collection. I had been spinning out thoughts on how a similar sort of thing might work with BookSwim. As far as I know it would be a lot less expensive than the rental/lease collections that libraries use for best sellers. I was also wondering how it might be a way to start (on the cheap) something like the 1stReads Book Donation program:

Rather than trying to adopt the NetFlix model, some libraries are just figuring out how to make it work for them.

I keep trying to show up for broadcast, but life keeps intervening.

Sheila Kearns

Stephen Francoeur said...

Greg, you pronounced my name better than I do! Thanks for including my comments from the last session on this one. Wish I could participate, but at 10 am, I'm either just going to bed or running to get my 6 month old back to sleep after an early awakening. I'll keep listening via MP3s, though. Keep up the great work.

Daniel said...

Ten was a great show. Can't wait to hear 11 and hope to get back into participation soon.

I have one small nitpick. During the self-immolation segment, I felt like searching was being portrayed as a choice between keyword searching (which works) and controlled vocabulary searching, i.e. LCSH (which doesn't work).

I think they work together. I will often do a keyword search to either find a known item or at least one book on a new topic. Once I have that item record, finding MANY related items (whether on the same subject, author, and so on) by using the controlled vocabulary subject headings, usually available as hyperlinks.

Everyone on the show is definitely right that setting up a catalog to default to LCSH searching would be a special brand of madness. But if we tossed out traditional cataloging, then we would lose an important discovery tool.