Monday, November 30, 2015

State Government Protects Holiday Shoppers

Holiday shopping is in full swing and the Wisconsin Department of Agriculture, Trade and Consumer Protection (DATCP) is on your side! DATCP is the state’s primary consumer protection agency. The Bureau of Consumer Protection has broad authority to regulate unfair business practices. 
Picture of a person holding a credit card
Courtesy of Pixabay

According to the website, these are just a few of the services DATCP provides Wisconsin consumers:

  • Operate Wisconsin’s Consumer Information Hotline; consumers can contact our hotline staff by e-mail at or through our toll-free hotline at 1-800-422-7128.
  • Handle about 150,000 new consumer complaints and inquiries each year.
  • Provide consumers and businesses with the information they need. DATCP distributes consumer protection publications and provides information such as “Consumer Protection Law at Your Fingertips” through the website.
  • Picture of a white shopping bag with a sale sign on it.
    Courtesy of Pixabay
    Regulate unfair and deceptive business practices by rule. DATCP rules protect millions of Wisconsin consumers every day. They also protect honest businesses against unfair competition. Rules have the force of law. 

So before heading to the mall, visit the DATCP website and read up on the tips for risk free holiday shopping that will ensure you have a safe and risk free holiday shopping season!

Written by: 
Abby Swanton, Resources for Libraries and Lifelong Learning

Wednesday, November 25, 2015

2016 System Plans and Program Budgets

By October 15 every year, Wisconsin public library system boards submit their plans for the next fiscal year to the Division for Libraries and Technology (DLT). The Division must review and approve these plans to certify the payment amounts of state aid to public library systems. For 2016, funding will come largely from county appropriations and service contracts totaling 65.7% of system budgets statewide.

2016 Public Library System Income Sources
(click the image above to view the full size chart)

As planned, systems will be spending 34% of budgets statewide on technology, reference, and interlibrary loan and 37% on direct payments to member libraries for nonresident access to library services within systems. The remaining 29% will be used for nonresident access payments across system borders and programs that include:

  • Delivery
  • Continuing Education and Consulting
  • Library Collection Development
  • Library Service to Youth
  • Library Service to Special Users

2016 Public Library System Program Budgets
(click the image above to view the full size chart)

Approved system plans for 2013-2016 are online at

Written by Jamie McCanless, Public Library Development Team

Tuesday, November 24, 2015

What are you learning this month?

BadgerLearn Pro connects you to free, continuing education resources at Here's a few archived webinars we've added to our collection this month.

NaNoWriMo: Programming for All Ages

From Indianhead Federated Library System
Samantha Johnson, Augusta Public Library and a Municipal Liaison for National Novel Writing Month, shares ideas about easy, low-cost programs that libraries can provide to encourage the writers in their communities.

Copywriting for the Web: Today's Best Practices

From TechSoup for Libraries
Your website is a key part of your organization's outreach/marketing effort and needs to speak to your readers their way. This free webinar will offer you plenty of tips and techniques to make sure your content is web reader-friendly, while it stresses your community impact.

Is It Copyrighted? Can I Use It?

From Nebraska Library Commission
Copyright! Complicated, confusing, and not clear-cut. What does a librarian need to know? Michael Sauers and Laura Johnson, from the Nebraska Library Commission, will present scenarios to discuss, as we all shine a light on the subject and try to figure out what a librarian needs to do.

Making an Artful Ask

From Nicolet Federated Library System
Marcy Heim talks about making an ask during the Wisconsin Trustee Training Week.

From Librarian to Proficient Manager: Uncovering the Transitional Journey

From WebJunction
Many librarians find themselves challenged to make the transition into proficient managers, often without clear guidance. Discover what the research has revealed and what it means for others interested in the transitional journey to proficient manager.

BadgerLearn Pro is a joint project under active development with help from our partners:  

Bridges Library System Logo DPI Logo Indianhead Federated Library System Logo iSchool Logo Milwaukee County Federated Library System Northern Waters Library Service WiLS Logo Winnefox Library System Logo
IMLS logo

Monday, November 23, 2015

Hello, What Ideas Do You Have Today?

It was announced recently that the Division for Libraries & Technology has launched various Google Communities as a new way for Wisconsin library staff to ask questions, share ideas, and converse on various topics. Currently you can access the following Communities:
And now you can discuss everything there is to discuss about Technology in libraries. The WI Public Library Technology Community is a forum for those interested in technology - whether you are in charge of installing and maintaining the computers in your library or you are someone who is thinking about using Makey Makey in your upcoming program, this is the place for you.
hand holding coffee mug that reads "Librarian: the original search engine"
Photo by Ryan Claringbole
Technology is everywhere in libraries. It is much more than OPACs and networking infrastructure (though these are still crucial and should be discussed). It involves more and more staff who do not have a background in technology, but who have ideas, and often these ideas involve using some type of technology. Coding, tablets, PCs, makerspaces, digital privacy, digitization, networking, filtering, managed wireless systems, social media, 3D printers, e-books, databases, and so much more all fall under the Technology umbrella. 

While some people might talk to their work colleagues or to others that they normally communicate with, sharing these ideas with the broader Wisconsin library community tends to happen during conferences and regional workshops. Collecting these conversations to be more accessible and searchable, as well as facilitating more of a conversation rather than correspondence will hopefully spark more individuals discussing what they are doing and what they are thinking.

Everyone has questions. Everyone has ideas. It would be great if everyone shares both. Whether you want to ask your fellow librarians a question, share how you are implementing or experimenting with something new, or just lurking to see what others are doing, the Technology Community, as well as the other Communities, are your places to do all of this. Let's share articles and blog posts that discuss a new technology and ponder if and how it can be incorporated into public libraries. Let's share questions - whether it's comparing software or wondering how to secure tablets in a library. Let's share not only accomplishments but also experiments and the takeaways from them. Let's share as only we, the library community, can. 


Written by:
Ryan Claringbole, Public Library Development Team

Friday, November 20, 2015

LSTA Grant Subawards and CIPA: What's the Connection?

LSTA Grant Subawards

Many 2016 LSTA grant applications requested computers, tablets, and other Internet-accessible devices to expand library services to current and potential users.
LSTA funds are distributed by the federal agency Institute of Museums and Library Services (IMLS) to each of the states through the Grants to States Program. It is important to remember, however, that as a federal agency, IMLS has rules and regulations that state agencies and local agencies (libraries and library systems) must observe to prevent rule violations and penalties to the library/library system. Grant applicants sign and submit a certification form (contract) agreeing that there will not be criminal activities (e.g. embezzlement, theft, bribery), will have drug free work environments, that library agencies will not engage in illegal lobbying, discrimination, or trafficking in persons. Additionally, applicants also agreed to Internet content safety that states:

"The library is either:

A. CIPA Compliant (The applicant library has complied with the requirements of Section 9134(f) (1) of the Library Services and Technology Act LSTA (e.g.filters devices accessing the Internet AND/OR direct Internet access)


B. CIPA requirements do not apply because LSTA funds are NOT being used to purchase computers to access the Internet, or to pay for direct costs associated with accessing the Internet."
Child at a computer
Child at a Computer - Image courtesy of

Devices accessing the Internet or Internet access purchased with LSTA funds (including but not limited to computers, tablets, or smartphones), must comply with the Children’s Internet Protection Act (CIPA), passed in December 2000 as part of the FCC. The Act mandates the use of Internet filters in libraries. This includes the purchase of computers for job resource centers or other off-site outreach endeavors. The purchase of Internet filtering software is not a permissible use of LSTA funds under the Wisconsin guidelines.

LSTA funding may be used for projects that include use and/or purchase of Internet-accessible devices that are non-CIPA compliant if matching local funds are used for the purchase of the devices. In these situations, LSTA funds can used for equipment, training, transportation, or other LSTA allowable costs related to the use of the Internet-accessible devices. If a library or library system does not filter, the actual Internet accessible device or access cannot be funded with LSTA funds. However, LSTA dollars can fund security cases, cables, storage cart, or training.  

CIPA Requirements

The Children's Internet Protection Act (CIPA) states that schools and libraries seeking to receive support for internet access, internal connections, and basic maintenance services must certify that they are implementing measures to block or filter internet access to certain visual depictions.

The requirements of CIPA are:

1. Internet safety policy publicly posted - most libraries have an internet policy listed on their website.

2. Public notice, hearing, or meeting at which there is an open comment period regarding this implementation. Note: make sure that documentation of this meeting is kept.

3. Technology protection measure - having technology that blocks or filters internet access to the best of the library's abilities. A person can be authorized to turn off the filter or block for an adult for legitimate research or lawful purpose. What is important to remember in terms of what needs to be filtered is what is the following: "The protection measures must block or filter Internet access to pictures that are: (a) obscene; (b) child pornography; or (c) harmful to minors (for computers that are accessed by minors)."

If there are questions about this topic, contact Ryan Claringbole ( or Terrie Howe (

Written by:
Terrie Howe & Ryan Claringbole, Public Library Development Team

Thursday, November 19, 2015

ILEAD = Awesome Librarians

Wisconsin was one of ten states that participated in the 2015 ILEAD USA program (other states were: Delaware, Illinois, Maine, New York, North Dakota, Ohio, Pennsylvania, South Carolina, and Utah).  Created in 2009 by the Illinois State Library, ILEAD is a library leadership immersion program that focuses on teamwork, skill building, and participatory technology.  Someone who's been involved with ILEAD since the beginning is David Lankes of Syracuse University's School of Information Studies.  According to Lankes, ILEAD is all about producing "awesome librarians."  We couldn't agree more!
Team photo of ILEAD USA-WI cohort October 2015
ILEAD USA-Wisconsin cohort, October 2015

Detailed information about Wisconsin's ILEAD program can be found on our DPI website.  Our 2015 ILEAD program may be over, but we promise that you'll be hearing a lot more from our awesome ILEADers and their innovative, collaborative, and totally amazing team projects:

Team Digital Humanities is creating a digital exhibit highlighting some of the StoryCorps interviews conducted at Milwaukee PL in 2007; this exhibit will soon be available on the library's website.
  • Rachel Arndt (Milwaukee PL)
  • Maria Cunningham-Benn (Milwaukee PL)
  • Elisabeth Kaune (Milwaukee PL)
  • Mary Lou Klecha (Milwaukee PL)
  • Kirsten Thompson (Milwaukee PL)
  • Jeff Dawson (Lester PL - Team Mentor)

Team Early Literacy Innovators created a professionally-produced video ("Media Mentorship and Using Apps in Storytimes") that promotes the use of apps and other digital media in storytimes for children.
  • Katharine Clark (Madison PL)
  • Angela Meyers (Waukesha County Federated Library System)
  • Kerry Pinkner (Waukesha PL)
  • Christi Sommerfeldt (formerly Muskego PL - not pictured)
  • Christine Weichart (New Berlin PL)
  • Gus Falkenberg (Indianhead Federated Library System - Team Mentor)

Team Enrich the Future - Tap Into the Past is creating a portable digitization-in-a-box toolkit (equipment, guidelines & training tools) that will assist librarians and educators in digitizing their collections of still images.
  • Inese Christman (Wisconsin Valley Library Service)
  • Sue Engel (Horace Mann Middle School)
  • Don Litzer (T.B. Scott Free Library)
  • Todd Mountjoy (Nicolet Area Technical College)
  • Emily Pfotenhauer (WiLS)
  • Jean Anderson (South Central Library System - Team Mentor)

Team MKE Mixers created a mobile makerspace ("mix box") of tools, instructions & programming suggestions that can be shared among the libraries in Milwaukee County.  Their team's website will be going live in 2016.
  • Beth Henika (North Shore Library)
  • Krista Hutley (Whitefish Bay PL)
  • Jennifer Loeffel (Franklin PL)
  • Emily Passey (Shorewood PL)
  • Sandra Speare (Greendale Middle School)
  • Joy Schwarz (Winnefox Library System - Team Mentor)

Team Minerva created a web portal ("Librarians Outside the Box") that allows public and school librarians to share, discuss & collaborate.
  • Amanda Burns (Suring Area PL)
  • Kinga Jacobson (Gilbraltar School District)
  • Nancy Larson (West Bend Community Memorial Library)
  • Debbie Olguin (Milwaukee PL)
  • Kimberly Young (formerly Brown County Library - not pictured)
  • Krista Ross (Southwest Wisconsin Library System - Team Mentor)

Team WisCode Literati created a website as part of their mission to help change the world through code literacy; teaching communities to code is essential for their future.
  • Kim Boldt (Milwaukee PL)
  • Melody Clark (Arrowhead Library System)
  • Josh Cowles (Fond du Lac PL)
  • Sara Bryce Kozla (formerly LaCrosse PL - not pictured)
  • Holly Storck-Post (Monroe PL)
  • Tasha Saecker (Appleton PL - Team Mentor)

Wisconsin's 2015 ILEAD program was made possible through a Laura Bush 21st Century Librarian Program grant from the Institute of Museum and Library Services (IMLS) with additional funding provided by the Wisconsin Department of Public Instruction.  There are no plans to do an ILEAD program in 2016; however, discussions are taking place among the states to do something related to ILEAD in 2017.

written by:
Denise Anton Wright, Public Library Development

Wednesday, November 18, 2015

Introducing the new Wikipedia Widget option in WISCAT

Guest post written by Ted Koppel, Auto-Graphics, Inc., [vendor of SHAREit system used for WISCAT searching and interlibrary loan]

Wikipedia calls itself “the free encyclopedia that anyone can edit.” As such, it has grown to be a huge, although imperfect, reference source on almost every person, location, issue, historical event, and scientific discovery that has ever occurred. A person can search on Wikipedia and find something on almost any subject imaginable.

Library users – especially those doing subject searches – often want to know more about the topic or person they’re looking for. In order to enhance the idea of “one stop shopping” – getting as much information as possible from a single information source — Auto-Graphics, Inc. has developed a Wikipedia widget – a tool that takes the search entered by a patron and simultaneously searches Wikipedia to bring back brief results.

In this way, the Wikipedia widget is similar to federated reference database searching that has been available in Auto-Graphics systems for years. Without ever leaving the SHAREit library environment, the system brings back relevant information from sources not controlled by the library.

Wikipedia Widget – How it works:

The library can choose to display the Wikipedia Widget in the left column of the search results screen. When a search is made, SHAREit checks in Wikipedia to see if there is a Wikipedia heading that matches. If so, it displays. In the screen shot below, my search was Grover Cleveland. Results from library collections are displayed to the right (as always), and the Wikipedia widget appears in the left panel. A patron can click on the widget title (Grover Cleveland) and view the full Wikipedia page.

Wikipedia widget results display Grover Cleveland photo and info link
Wikipedia widget displays results in left panel in SHAREit 

In the case where the results are ambiguous — (in the screen below, GARFIELD could be either the cartoon cat or the US president), the Wikipedia widget returns the most relevant term it can find, but then offers a link to let the user choose which Garfield he/she was looking for. 

Wikipedia widget result for Garfield comic strip with link to search for different Garfield
Link to other Garfield results in Wikipedia 

When I selected the "Did you mean a different Garfield?" link, the screen displayed the standard Wikipedia disambiguation page (see below). Wikipedia offered me the following 'Garfield' options:
Shows Wikipedia disambiguation page with links to different Garfield info
Disambiguation page of links to all other Wikipedia results for Garfield

Configuring the Wikipedia Widget for the Library

Wikipedia widget is an option and can be turned on and off by the library as desired. We recommend that you try it for a couple of weeks, see if it is popular among your patrons, and then make the decision on whether to keep it on permanently or turn it off.

In Staff Menu — UX Admin –System Settings–Results Options, see the new tab entitled Result Screen Extras. Currently, the only choice is ‘Enable Wikipedia Widget’; we expect to be adding new controls there in the months ahead. 

Shows new tab for Result Screen Extras
Result Screen Extras screen in SHAREit
Click the Checkbox to turn it on, and then SAVE the configuration. Log out of your SHAREit session; the next new session will see these changes take effect.

Things to Consider

As with any reference source or service offered to your patrons, there are several management considerations.
  • Wikipedia is, of course, an external source of information. Some libraries have ‘locked down’ public OPAC terminals so that they cannot go to external sites. If your library has done so, then you will not want to enable the Wikipedia widget.

  • The English language has many words that have more than one meaning. Wikipedia doesn’t know if a search for ‘Chicago’ is looking for the city, the musical group, or the university. Be aware that the Wikipedia results, like SHAREit results, will be better with a more specific search. Note, too, that the information provided in Wikipedia is generally written for an adult audience and the images in Wikipedia articles have not been aimed at a school-age audience. [Of course, in that respect, this is no different than any web search that a patron could do from a library terminal.]
[Questions?  Contact WISCAT staff at or 888-542-5543 ext 1, then press 1] 

Written by:
Ted Koppel, Auto-Graphics, Inc.

Tuesday, November 17, 2015

Join Communities? Privacy and Google+

Some persons have been apprehensive about joining the Google+ communities since privacy is a concern when establishing an account with Google.  It is a legitimate potential concern, but one that can be minimized.

The Education and Library worlds have established their presence in Google+ communities. Originally considered a social networking service, communities later became a layer enveloping Google services while allowing the sharing of user's identity and interests. Communities are meant to gather people virtually with similar interests to initiate and continue ongoing conversations about particular topics.

The Wisconsin Department of Public Instruction has Google Apps for Education users accounts which protects the privacy and security of students, teachers, and educators associated with this account. Google Privacy and Terms are located at this page.  This "Google for Education" pledges:
  • Protection for your Data
  • Additional storage across Gmail and Drive
  • No Ads for Google Apps for Educators
As it turns out, Google+ communities is not within the realm of the Google Apps for Education contract.  But Google+ can be customized through settings to maintain greater control over information that comes to or from your account. Keep in mind that we at the DPI do not use our personal email addresses for Google+ accounts.  Staff accounts are created using DPI work email addresses. DPI employees do not use Gmail accounts as their primary account while working with the Google Apps.

Google has created easy to understand tools to help people control how Google+ can work for them.

Image of the red Google+ application and other Google apps
Google+ located within the Application box
1.  Click on the Application box (There is a dotted square next to your name.) Click on the Google+ icon on the right side of the menu of applications (seen in the first image).

Settings located at bottom of Google+ Home Menu
Communities is a Google+ application
2. Once the Google+ page opens, click on Home. 
(See image to the right.) Click on Settings at the bottom of the menu. There are many choices in the settings that can be turned on or off.  These include: Who can interact with you and your posts?, Notification about when to deliver Google+ posts, control of other applications that you visit, Show or hide your profile, etc. You can choose to show what you post in communities on your Google+ profile. If this setting is on, posts from all your communities will show in the Posts tabs of your profile.  If you're a bit reluctant (like me!)not much is checked.

There is much more to learn about Google+ privacy policies and controls, as well as the Safety Center where privacy and security settings are explained. Many websites collect information about individuals that we frequently allow without really knowing or understanding the conditions. (e.g. through sites' use of cookies). Google has continuously modified its policies about collecting data and been fairly open about how it uses the information that it collects.  We hope that you will feel confident joining the discussions with your colleagues in the WI Department of Public Instruction communities.

Written by:
Terrie Howe, Public Library Development Team

Monday, November 16, 2015

Library of the Month: Spooner Memorial Library

The Library of the Month is a celebration of Wisconsin libraries compiled by the BadgerLink team.

Sculpture at Spooner Memorial Library
Image Courtesy of
Spooner Memorial Library
Spooner is a small rural community of 2,600 people, with the nearest urban center approximately 80 miles away. As a consequence the library’s service area encompasses nearly ¾ of the county. The responsibility of meeting those patrons’ needs is one the library embraces. Whether it is proctoring a test for a distance learning student or hosting a petting zoo that draws in 560 people, the Spooner Memorial Library is committed to making their community a better place by providing opportunities for both education and recreation.

The Spooner Memorial Library is celebrating a century of service in 2015. To commemorate this momentous occasion, the library hosted a series of events including an open house, complete with period costumes, and a program with nationally known author Lorna Landvik and the addition of a mural to the exterior of the building.

8' Book Installation
8 Foot Book Mural
Spooner Memorial Library
For the anniversary, the library released a book celebrating the library’s history. The story of the Spooner Memorial Library is not just the tally of the number of books that have circulated. But rather, it is the history of the people of Spooner who strongly believed that education empowers the individual to create his or her own destiny. The conviction that a library is not only a nicety but necessary for the community’s positive growth and prosperity is what has brought the library to the occasion of celebrating its centennial birthday.

Children's Department at Spooner Memorial Library
Image Courtesy of
Spooner Memorial Library
The Spooner Memorial Library reciprocates by being the community’s biggest cheerleader, participating in as many civic events as possible. Along with the typical community events such as having a booth at the county fair, and a float in the Rodeo parade, the library works with Scouts, 4-H, Kiwanis, and Lions on fundraisers and recruitment. The library also joins in the celebrations of events such as Family Reading Night at the public school and Family Fun Festival run by the local family resource center.

It has always been the belief of the Spooner Memorial Library that small community does not equal small minds nor limit ambitions. It is their goal to be the best at what they do and reach beyond common expectations, because their community deserves the finest service possible.

Written by:
Kara Ripley, Resources for Libraries and Lifelong Learning

Friday, November 13, 2015

Presentation and Survey on Working Together to Support Job Seekers

Last week Grant Lynch, Director of the Waukesha Public Library and Kara Ripley, BadgerLink Training Librarian, joined me to share this
WLA PRESENTATION: Supporting Patron's Job Search Needs.

We look at recent surveys that show strong support for job-search services and we highlight the great work being done now to support Wisconsin job seekers.

We hope you will view the presentation and then share YOUR feedback because

Large libraries - courtesy DPI
Large libraries - courtesy DPI
Small libraries - courtesy DPI
Small libraries - courtesy DPI

PLEASE TAKE THIS BRIEF SURVEY - Tell us if/how you'd like to work together.

Written by:
Martha Berninger,
Resources for Libraries and Lifelong Learning

Thursday, November 12, 2015

Emerging Partnerships

Emerging Roles of Library Media Specialists workshop learders
Workshop leaders
The current issue of Knowledge Quest (Journal of the American Association of School Librarians) focuses on school library and university partnerships. This feature article in the November/December 2015 edition was written by Wisconsin's own Eileen Schroeder, associate professor in Educational Foundations at the University of Wisconsin - Whitewater and coordinator of the UWSSLEC (University of Wisconsin System School Library Education Consortium) program and Stacy Fisher, library media director at Waunakee Community High School and secretary of the board of WEMTA (Wisconsin Educational Media and Technology Association). Please note that the link above is a permalink for BadgerLink so you may be prompted to log in.

This article highlights the Emerging Roles of Library Media Specialists workshops held in the summer of 2014. A description of what those workshops looked like was in an earlier WI Libraries for Everyone Blog post. We are excited that this project is being shared in a national professional journal feature article that focuses on partnerships and collaboration.  Eileen and Stacy documented what can happen when needs are identified and practitioners take leadership roles to address those needs. In this case it started with the need to build a better understanding of the work library media specialists do and how their role has evolved. The workshop project was a concrete example of how to address one issues that was identified. There is a well documented need for more certified library media specialists in Wisconsin. The Emerging Roles of Library Media Specialists (ERL) workshops were developed as part of a partnership between the UWSSLEC, DPI, WEMTA, CESA's and leaders from the field. This article describes how the workshops came about and what the teacher librarian leaders created to both inform and generate interest in the profession. I encourage you to read the article to learn more about it!

Written by:
Nancy Anderson, Resources for Libraries and Lifelong Learning

Wednesday, November 11, 2015

E-rate is Coming.

The Department of Public Instruction (DPI) will be hosting two webinars to help applicants understand changes to the E-rate program and applying for 2016. For almost two decades the E-rate program has helped schools and public libraries improve connectivity. E-rate funding has helped support telecommunications and
Universal Service Administrative Company (USAC) logo
Universal Service Administrative Company (USAC)
internet access since its beginning. Thanks to the E-rate Modernization Order, the program received additional funding and focused on simplifying the program. We encourage anyone that is applying or thinking of applying for E-rate to look over the following resources and attend both webinars:

The two webinars will be broken up by the following topics:
Thursday, November 19, 1:00 - 2:00 p.m.
  • Category 2 (infrastructure)
  • Fiber options
  • Free and Reduced Lunch data
Thursday, December 10, 1:00 - 2:00 p.m.
More information can be found on on the Universal Service Administrative Company (USAC) Schools and Libraries' website

To receive updates and information on the E-rate program you can follow the WI DPI E-rate Google Community, go to the DPI E-rate web page, or 

Written by:
Ryan Claringbole, Public Library Development Team

Tuesday, November 10, 2015

Wisconsin Digital Archives Collection Connection : Deer Hunting in Wisconsin

Thumbnail image of the Wisconsin Deer Hunting Regulations document for 2015
Courtesy of the WI DNR
Hunting is a tradition that has been shared by Wisconsinites for generations with the first regulated deer hunting season in Wisconsin beginning back in 1851.

The Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources provides a wealth of information about the history of deer hunting, deer hunting regulations, information about the health of the deer herd in Wisconsin and hunting records and statistics.

To learn more about deer hunting in Wisconsin visit the Wisconsin Digital Archives!
Picture of the Wisconsin DNR state agency logo
Courtesy of the WI DNR
For all the most current information about the upcoming deer hunting season, visit the Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources website.

Written by:
Mary Hutnik and Abby Swanton, Resources for Libraries and Lifelong Learning

Thursday, November 5, 2015

From the desk of the "Reluctant Blogger"....

Guest post written by Brian Hannemann, Milwaukee County Library System

So this is a first for me. Writing a blog post I mean. To be honest I have generally avoided blogs, not to mention Facebook and Twitter. It’s not that I am a technophobe, more of a tech sceptic. I love my smart phone, my tablet, and my high definition television/dvr. I have a love/hate relationship with Google but that seems pretty commonplace among librarians. I am just not enamored with technology whose utility has to be explained to me. To me, the latest technologies represent nothing more than electronic tools and should be treated with the same lack of respect as a hammer or screwdriver. In other words, tools are only as important as the job they do for you. Maybe I am an unusually private person but I rarely feel the need to use a website to share my thoughts, experiences, and observations (to paraphrase the definition of blogging I found with Google on so by the measure of utility, blogging has not held much use for me.

With this background, when I was asked if I wanted to write a post for the resource sharing blog, my
Man holding up hands
Wait, no, not me.
first thought was no. My second thought was definitely not, and my third thought was I am the worst possible choice in the history of mankind to write a post. Yet in the back of my mind was a creeping suspicion that a tech sceptic might have something valuable to say about the interesting relationship between resource sharing and technology. How many times in the last 10 years have you heard that technology will eliminate the need for resource sharing? The line of thinking goes something like this: In the near future all books, recordings, video, etc. will be available instantly on the web for free. All people will have high-speed internet and wireless devices to deliver. You will not need a library card or worry about a due date. Everything will be at your fingertips. So why would you possibly take the time to fill out a request, wait a week or more for something to be sent from another library and then make the trip to your own library to pick it up? This prediction seems especially popular among technology advocates.

Pardon my skepticism but in practice, technology and resource sharing have a much more complicated relationship. It is true that online publications have greatly impacted ILL. Periodical photocopy requests have declined (along with print periodicals generally) because of the availability of online material. Also, Hathi Trust and Google Books have brought full length books to your computer free of charge. Searching for subject material and requesting material has also become much easier and less time intensive because of technology. However, the idea that all material will be available to everyone instantly and for free is looking more and more like an unrealistic dream. In fact, the last few years have seen an increase in the monetization of the internet. Google removed the full-text versions of almost all of the material on Google Books after being sued for copyright infringement and Hathi Trust followed suit. Periodicals that once provided free online access now charge a subscription fee and internet providers have introduced usage fees designed to curb usage and limit access.

Further, technology has impacted library usage in unexpected ways. Instead of reducing the need for
physical space as predicted by the elimination of card catalogs and reference areas, technology has created a demand for more space in libraries to accommodate server rooms, charging stations, and maker-spaces, not to mention classrooms to teach people how to use new technology. These new demands for space have caused most libraries to reduce the size of their physical collection thereby increasing the need to supplement their holdings with shared materials. Also the advances in search technology, while saving time have also expanded the ability of the average person to search far beyond their local library. The result is much higher expectations in regards to the material available through sharing. In short, every advance that reduces need or increases efficiency, seems to be offset by new issues and increased demand. The result, at least in my corner of the world, is the misperception that demand for resource sharing is decreasing, while it is in fact stable or even increasing.

So what does the future really hold for resource sharing? To be honest, I think predicting the future is a fool’s errand but there are plenty of reasons to think resource sharing will continue to be a core service demanded by patrons, technology be damned. Of course, that’s coming from a technology skeptic.

Written by:
Brian Hannemann
Interlibrary Loan Coordinator, Milwaukee County Library System

Wednesday, November 4, 2015

Do "Ya Gotta Have Friends"?

Our Public Library Development Team often receives questions about Friends of the Library groups. What state laws govern Friends groups?  What happens if a Friends group decides to dissolve?  How do you handle a Friends group that wants to govern the library?  Chapter 43 of our state statutes (the chapter that addresses public libraries and library systems) does not specifically mention Friends groups. There's no legal requirement for public libraries to have a Friends group - it's entirely optional.
Photo of Four Toy Thanksgiving Figures
Thanksgiving Friends (photo by Denise Anton Wright)

If your library wants information on Friends groups, then Chapter 24 of our Trustee Essentials will be a useful overview.  Another fabulous resource is the United for Libraries website created by the Association of Library Trustees, Advocates & Friends, a division of the American Library Association.

The Friends of Tennessee Libraries recently published "The Ethical Dozen for Friends of the Library."  These ethics should be used as a model of behavior for anyone involved with a Friends group. The space limitations of this post don't allow me to quote the "Ethical Dozen" in its entirety but in a nutshell, Friends:
  • value public library services
  • recognize that they don't perform a decision-making role for the library
  • support quality library services
  • work to make sure the public has equal access to information
  • subscribe to and believe in the core intellectual freedom documents for libraries
  • support actions made by the majority of the Friends board
  • do not interfere with library operations
  • promote the library program to the public
  • conduct fundraising that complements the library's mission
  • follow legal, professional, and ethical practices in making decisions
  • serve as advocates for local, state, and national library issues
  • are open and welcoming to suggestions, questions, and communications
Many thanks to Don Reynolds, President of the Friends of Tennessee Libraries for permission to quote and promote the "Ethical Dozen."

Written by:
Denise Anton Wright, Public Library Development

Tuesday, November 3, 2015

Conference Recap: BadgerLink goes to the GED/HSED and Adult Literacy Conference

From October 27-29, BadgerLink team members Kara Ripley and I, Gail Murray, attended the GED/HSED and Adult Literacy Conference in Appleton. This was the BadgerLink team’s first time attending this conference, and it was a great success!

Over 500 attendees were present over the course of the conference, some long-time BadgerLink enthusiasts, and many more who were brand new to BadgerLink’s resources. We connected with individuals at our exhibitor booth, and also spoke in two one-hour-long sessions, highlighting LearningExpress Library for GED test preparation resources and other job and skill building tutorials, as well as magazine searching in MasterFILE Premier.  

Knowledge is Power image
Knowledge is Power
Image Source: Pixabay
In addition to reaching new BadgerLink users, we learned from the BadgerLink Super Users at the conference. For example, an attendee from a Wisconsin correctional facility told us that she gives a BadgerLink bookmark to every inmate who is released from her facility. While most correctional facilities currently don’t allow inmates to use the internet, BadgerLink provides reliable resources, including skill-building and job skills tutorials in LearningExpress Library, that can be extremely valuable and useful for the formerly incarcerated. It was our pleasure to connect with new audiences and longtime supporters of our resources, to learn from them and share information about BadgerLink!

Special thanks are in order for Beth Lewis, State GED and HSED Administrator at the Department of Public Instruction (, who coordinated the conference.

The BadgerLink team looks forward to future outreach opportunities, including presenting and exhibiting at the Wisconsin Library Association conference next week (November 3-6).  Come visit us at booth 406/408, and attend our presentation on Friday at 10:45 a.m., titled Digital Freedom: BadgerLink Makes It Happen!

Written by:
Gail Murray, Resources for Libraries & Lifelong Learning