Category Archives: Libraries

Special Collections and Monkeys

You’ve got to give it to Buzzfeed—they do the lowest common denominator like nobody else. Even when they’re unpacking the quality stuff, you still have to pay attention to figure out which level of brow they’re aiming at. I know, I’m saying that like it’s a bad thing. It’s not—it’s what they do—but the sheer […]

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Voluminous: Massimo Bartolini’s Bookyard

So yes, we have established that we like the little free libraries. They have a certain DIY ethic, they’re populist, they’re cute. Even if they do give people the excuse to use the word “wee,” which should never happen unless someone is Scottish—and probably not even then—I am in favor of them. But I’m also […]

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Little Libraries Around the Corner

Any psychologist will tell you that much of the allure of miniatures, for children, is control. Dollhouses, action figures, little china animals—these are all smaller than even the smallest of small people, offering the comfort of scale. But that’s also a bit of a simplistic explanation. There’s something mysterious in the tiny and also something […]

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Flavor of the Week: Library Boing Boing

The handy WordPress search function reveals the fact that I used the phrase “two great tastes” as a post title just under two years ago, so I’m going to hold tight to my integrity and refrain from using it again. But if I did, I would now. One of my favorite places to geek out […]

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ALA, Publishers Go to the Table

One bit of good news from ALA Midwinter is that big publishers will finally be sitting down to some serious discussion about eBook lending. At the end of this month Macmillan, Simon & Schuster, and Penguin will be meeting in New York with ALA to broach the topic in—we hope—civilized fashion. At this point, none […]

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Angry Penguins

It seems that the newest line in that sandy area between big publishers and Amazon—or big publishers and OverDrive, to put a finer point on it, or big publishers and libraries, if you want to feel really paranoid—has been drawn. The artist this time in Penguin Group USA, which has announced that it’s pulling its […]

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It’s a Living Thing

It’s reassuring to see how many institutions have been setting aside assets for oral history programs over the past few years. As documentation becomes increasingly user-friendly the projects have gotten more complex and far-reaching, although they stretch back in all sorts of forms over the last century—from musicologist John Lomax to the WPA Federal Writers’ […]

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The People’s Library

Some dispatches from The People’s Library down on Wall Street: Power to the (informed) people! And one very small dog.

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News of the Day: RIP Steve Jobs / The People’s Library

Having a bit of a news junkie evening here at Like Fire headquarters, between squeezing coverage of the Wall Street protesters out of the Internet—once again, when it comes to breaking news that’s not being covered elsewhere, Twitter earns its stars—and the not-unexpected but still sad news of Steve Jobs’ death. Occupy Wall Street is […]

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Amazon’s Rent-a-Text

Tell you what, nothing in the world screams “death of print” like a good Amazon rumor. This week, apparently, it’s all about the company’s negotiations with publishers over a possible Netflix-like deal for Amazon Prime subscribers, who are already paying $79 a year for free second-day delivery. The new service would also let them rent […]

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