Tuesday, March 01, 2005

Blog People respond

From Stephen's Web:

Facing criticism on the American Library Association Council for an article criticizing Google Scholar published in the L.A. Times and an ill-conceived follow-up about the "Blog People", ALA President Michael Gorman is now claiming to have written in jest. "The piece (LJ, February 15th 2005) was intended to be satirical," he writes on the ALA Council list server. Does anyone believe this? Of course not. This is satire. He adds, "My views on 'blogs' have nothing to do with my activities as ALA president-elect or president," thinking, perhaps, that nobody would notice the words 'American Library Association' in the credits for both articles. "Nice. Really nice. Good use of the ALA presidential bully pulpit. No citations, of course," comments Council member K.G. Schneider on the same list (likely sources have now been found). Much more discussion on the Web4Lib archive. Other members raised concern about the now-tarnished image of the ALA, a concern well-founded as criticism has swept from its roots in the conservative blogosphere (no doubt motivated by Gorman's opposition to the Patriot Act) to a widespread and general condemnation. Writes Rochelle, "I've read more concentrated bad-mouthing about libraries, librarians and the ALA the past two days, than I've ever seen, and that's not A-OK." The damage done by Gorman's comments far outweights the good work undertaken by the Council in Salinas, and at a fraction of the cost. And the public silence by the ALA on Gorman's published position indicates acquiescence. The ALA should act, and clear the record. By Jessamyn West, librarian.net, February 25, 2005


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