Thursday, December 29, 2016

2016: a Year of Change

State & National developments in 2016 that will affect library services

Phote Carla Hayden, Librarian of Congress, courtesy American Library Association
Dr. Carla Hayden,
Librarian of Congress
As 2016 draws to a close, we can look back at some profound and groundbreaking changes that occurred in the world of library services. Among these are:
  • Dr. Carla D. Hayden was appointed as the 14th Librarian of Congress, the first woman and first African American to hold that post. She may face some tough challenges, replacing the registrar for Copyright to make that process less skewed toward corporate content owners.
  • Wisconsin's service hub for the Digital Public Library of America (DPLA) went live in August. The effort is a joint project of Wisconsin Library Services (WiLS), the Wisconsin Department of Public Instruction,The University of Wisconsin-Madison, the Wisconsin Historical Society (WHS), the Milwaukee Public Library (MPL), and the University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee and Marquette University. Due to the previous coordinated efforts to offer digitized collections online, such as Recollection Wisconsin, the WHS, UW-Madison and UW-Milwaukee, and the Milwaukee Public Library, the Wisconsin hub opened as the fifth-largest hub among the many states already participating in the DPLA. 

    Monarch butterfly image on wave line between Monarch Library System and "Transforming Library Service" Dodge Ozaukee
  •  The first merger of two public library systems in Wisconsin occurred with the merger of the Eastern Shores Library System (Sheboygan and Ozaukee counties) with the two county Mid-Wisconsin Federated Library System (Jefferson County had withdrawn from MWFLS in 2015 to join with Waukesha County to form Bridges) to form the Monarch Library System in 2017. 
    image of Wisconsin shape overlaid with image of tree w colored leaves
  • The Public Library System Redesign (PLSR) project, led by a 10 member steering committee appointed by State Superintendent Dr. Tony Evers, forged ahead with eight of the nine work groups collecting information, collaborating, and proposing alternate service models for various areas of public library service, such as technology support, continuing education, consulting, delivery, and ILL. Those were presented at the Wisconsin Library Association (WLA) annual conference in October to collect further input, ideas and reactions. Project Managers Stef Morrill and Bruce Smith of WiLS will continue through 2017 to work with the steering committee, workgroup members, and the Wisconsin public library community to refine those concepts and develop concrete and workable options to deliver more effective, efficient and affordable services and support to Wisconsin libraries and citizens.
  • Another development to watch in 2017 is the recent retirement of Tom Wheeler, the chair of the Federal Communications Commission, the body that oversees the telephone, broadband, and network communications. Wheeler had been a proponent of Net Neutrality, despite the objections of other FCC members and much of the cable and internet industry (with the exception of such large providers as Google and Netflix).

And in 2016, public libraries lost a true Friend with the passing of Sandra Friedman Dolnick, who died earlier this month at age 80. Ms. Dolnick began her support for libraries in the 1970s when she joined the Milwaukee Bookfellows (later the Friends of the Milwaukee Public Library) and became very active volunteering for the library and leading the organization. Throughout the next decade she worked with the American Library Association (ALA) to found Friends of Libraries USA (FOLUSA), an independent organization to provide support and organizational guidance for Friends groups throughout the country. She retired from leading that organization in 2002, and in 2009 FOLUSA was incorporated into United for Libraries: Association of Trustees, Advocates, Friends and Foundations, under the aegis of the ALA.

Written by John DeBacher, Public Library Development

Wednesday, December 28, 2016

Annual Report / LibPAS Workshop Material

Update 1/4/2017: As FY2016 is the first year collecting data about successful retrievals of electronic collections, we do not yet have the processes that will allow DPI to compile and prefill this data. Slides 13 and 17 of the presentation slides have been revised accordingly.

In November and December this year, PLD held four workshops about the public library annual report that included hands-on exercises in the online reporting system. "The 2016 Annual Report: Before, During, and After" covers these areas:

  • Public Library Services Funding Framework – The connection between annual reports and funding in Wisconsin
  • Annual Report Calendar – Report-related work and communication between libraries and Wisconsin DPI
  • Public Library Annual Report – What’s new, changed, or deleted • Typical rough spots
  • LibPAS Online Reporting System – Hands-on exercises: navigation, report process, comparison reports
  • Things to Remember – General guidance, checklist, and contacts

If you were unable to attend or would like to revisit the workshop material, a PDF file of the SCLS presentation slides is online. In the file, website and email links are live.

This workshop is available to any Wisconsin public library system that wants to invite PLD to give it. For more information, please contact

Written by Jamie McCanless, Public Library Development Team

Thursday, December 22, 2016

Google Classroom in, a BadgerLink-licensed provider of multimedia on K-12 fiction and nonfiction books, integrated Google Classroom into their sharing tools, making content accessible within your instructional spaces. It is now easier than ever for educators to share engaging, high quality content with students!
Image of chalkboard and chalk with Google Classroom logo
Enhance your student experience with Google Classroom

Google Classroom is a free web-based platform that allows educators to integrate their Google Apps for Education account with other Google Apps services, including Google Docs, Gmail, and Google Calendar. Google Classroom provides educators with an easy way to distribute assignments, communicate, and stay organized.

The BadgerLink team put together a tip sheet to help educators use this valuable resource: Using Google Classroom with

Are you already using BadgerLink resources with Google Classroom? Do you have other ideas for using BadgerLink in the classroom? Share your success stories with us!

Please contact the BadgerLink team with any questions, and subscribe to our email lists for BadgerLink updates and training reminders.

Written by:
Elizabeth Neuman, Resource for Libraries & Lifelong Learning

Wednesday, December 21, 2016

Wisconsin Department of Workforce Development to Phase Out Telephone-based Reporting System for Unemployment Insurance

Libraries May Experience Increased Use of Public Computers by Unemployment Claimants

Earlier this month, the Wisconsin Department of Workforce Development notified some stakeholders that they will be moving to an online only filing system for Unemployment Insurance – libraries will be necessary partners for these job seekers as many may be in need of internet and computer services to complete their weekly claims – please pass on to library stakeholders as you see fit. 

The Message distributed to legislators and others by the DWD is as follows (bold emphasis is mine):

logo for DWD, Wisconsin Department of Workforce Development

In the Spring of 2017 DWD will fully implement additional modernizations to further cement our Unemployment Insurance (UI) system as an efficient, 21st century online service delivery system that supports outstanding customer service and maximizes the value of reduced federal administrative funding for the UI program due to the improving Wisconsin economy.

With most unemployment claims already being filed through the state's fast, convenient and state-of-the-art online system, Wisconsin in spring 2017 will begin to phase out its 1990s-era automated telephone system. The state Department of Workforce Development (DWD), which oversees the state's unemployment system, will continue to operate telephone-based services to help UI claimants navigate online services and assist claimants with certain barriers in completing their claims.

Wisconsin is advising claimants and employers of these upcoming changes, which will provide four months of notification during the peak season for UI claims and allow claimants the opportunity to learn about and use our fast and convenient online services now.

DWD has long offered online filing services and in 2014 rolled out the first of several dramatic enhancements to its online UI system.  Today, three out of every four weekly claims are filed online (nearly 100% are able to be completed online) and three out of five initial claims are filed online (over 90% are able to be completed online). Online filing services offer several advantages over the automated telephone system, such as:
  • The ability to save work and conveniently finish a claim at a later time.
  • Options to view information entered for accuracy prior to submitting a claim.
  • Work search and wage entry screens to enter required data online, preventing potential payment delays associated with sending in the information by fax or mail.
  • Tips and answers to frequent questions during the filing process.

Additionally, customers can quickly and easily retrieve account information, such as:
  • Individual claim information, payment status and remaining benefit balance.
  • Printer-friendly documentation of payments received for housing or energy assistance.
  • 1099-G tax forms to view or print.
  • Personal information including the ability to update an address, tax withholding, payment method, and bank information.

DWD is collaborating with regional partners in encouraging claimants without a personal computer or mobile device to file at their local job center, library or other local center with online access. Wisconsin joins states such as Iowa in moving away from phone-based systems to file claims.

Information about the online filing system is available at this link. If you have questions about the change, the DWD provides an online email question form here

Post complied by John DeBacher, Public Library Development

To tape or not to tape

Guest Post written by Charles Clemence

Recently the WISCAT list contained an exchange about the use of tape and labels in ILL. It began as a post by Christine Barth suggesting that WISCAT and other pre-printed labels be used to route ILLs whenever possible. This led to a discussion of tape and labels and how best to use them. Some of that discussion was prompted by the new national guidelines for ILL, which prohibit the use of any kind of tape on items belonging to other libraries.

Below is an edited version of my contribution to the discussion, which Christine requested I repost here. Most people seemed to appreciate my comments, although that’s probably because I didn’t hear from the ones who didn’t. (Thanks to those people).

In March I'll be turning 65, so I like to think that nothing much surprises me anymore. Including
Rolls of colored tape
Image courtesy of Pixabay
election results and the Packers' curious inability to win consistently with one of the best quarterbacks to ever play the game. But I am constantly surprised at how much passion the issue of tape arouses in the ILL community. To use or not use, removable or non-removable, everyone seems to have an opinion. Myself included. Over 25 years ago I wrote a (supposedly) humorous article for the Winding Rivers Library System newsletter, suggesting (jokingly) that perhaps librarians were getting kickbacks from the Scotch tape people, judging by the amount of tape I saw used on ILL items. I thought that was funny, although I'm not sure anyone else did.

As to tape, a couple of comments:

1. The prohibition on tape in the new ILL guidelines refers to items owned by other libraries. If you want to send your own items out covered in tape - go for it. But when returning items you borrowed, my experience is that it's best to follow the guidelines, however arbitrary they seem. ILL is based on having cooperative lenders. In fact, it couldn't exist without them. If some don't like tape, then the prudent course is to not use it for any.

2. The ILL guidelines are just that - guidelines. If you don't follow them the library police aren't going to show up at your door. At least I don't think they will. However, if you don't follow the guidelines a lender would be free to refuse your loan requests for that reason. For myself, I've always tried to avoid using tape. If necessary, I tape the label to a rubber band and put that combination around the item. Some don't like this solution, but if you use removable tape on the rubber band it isn't too obnoxious to dismantle.

As to labels, most of the problems described in the earlier comments sound like human error or a combination of software issues and human error. If anyone has come up with a way to keep people from making mistakes they're doing a good job of keeping it a secret. And the perfect software package continues to elude us as well.

Moreover, going back to exclusive use of pink routing labels would only make these problems worse. I remember when we had that system and there were a lot more errors than there are now. Also, unless you print the information on the pink labels - something that isn't always possible - the problem of reading the labels arises. No one wants to read my handwriting, I know that.

That's my 2 cents. Or maybe more like a nickel.

Written by:  
Charles Clemence, Winding Rivers Library System

Tuesday, December 20, 2016

Library of the Month: De Forest Area School District Libraries

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

The De Forest Area School District libraries have been busy lately, from a newly redesigned website at the district level, which now includes greater access to library resources, to many exciting projects and initiatives in each library. The district’s library staff has been promoting BadgerLink and getting the word out, and the district’s BadgerLink usage has been increasing. The De Forest Area School District Libraries are being highlighted as this month’s BadgerLink Library of the Month!

In the high school library, Library Media Specialist Margi Wachowiak reports that “Badgerlink databases are an essential part of our online research sources. Having them as our foundation allows us to supplement with additional subscription databases. Students in our Advanced Placement Literature classes, for example, gather much of their literary criticism from the Literary Reference Center. Yet, for different perspectives, they also have access to Bloom’s Literature.” Wachowiak also shared a story of a new student who came from a district with considerably more technology available. The student was impressed with the technology at his old district, but after learning how to use BadgerLink and Access NewspaperARCHIVE at DAHS his admiration shifted to the library at his new district! Wachowiak states that “utilizing the technology as a tool to access resources is where the learning occurs. We realize how fortunate we are to have these tools available to our staff and students 24/7."

Two students doing research on computers in the library
High school students researching with Explora and Encyclopedia Britannica
Photo courtesy De Forest Area SD
In the middle school, the newly renovated 7th & 8th grade Library Media Center offers students and teachers more flexibility in accessing and using both physical and online resources, according to Laura Shucha. Shucha named NoveList K-8 as a valuable asset for Reader’s Advisory. “As a Library Media Specialist, I have worked with the 8th grade English classes to teach students how to better understand their reading preferences by digging into NoveList reader appeal terms and genres. As we wrap up this activity, some students want to continue to spend time in NoveList finding read-alikes and discovering new books to add to their “someday” reading lists.” Shucha also highlighted a nonfiction inquiry project done by all fifth graders which makes great use of the Explora for Middle & High Schools resource in BadgerLink, which she says “is a great place to refine research skills that are transferrable to other databases and the internet in general.”

Colorful photo of the new library interior
The recently renovated De Forest Middle School library
Photo courtesy De Forest Area SD
In the elementary schools, Library Media Specialists Jamey Stanosz and Dana Franco also list NoveList K-8 as a favorite among staff and students alike. They shared that “students first learn to use Encyclopedia Britannica in 3rd grade as they are learning to how to effectively locate and use high-quality information online. In 4th grade, students learn a variety of skills as they integrate primary source documents found in Explora for Elementary Schools into their projects. For example, a student making a project related to the March on Washington found and used the program from the March on Washington.”

Students using computers with headphones on in the library
Elementary students using online resources
Photo courtesy De Forest Area SD
It’s quite an exciting time at De Forest Area School District Libraries -- in addition to all the projects and programs described above, one elementary school is being entirely rebuilt, and another is undergoing a complete renovation. Both schools will have new library media centers, which will include makerspaces, or “Inventor Centers” as they are called in the district. A third elementary school is remodeling a space to become an Inventor Center, as well. Thanks to the library staff at De Forest Area School District for their support of BadgerLink and for giving us a glimpse into their libraries, and here’s to a successful rest of the school year!

Written by Gail Murray
Resources for Libraries & Lifelong Learning

Resources for Libraries and Lifelong Learning - 2016 Highlights

2016 is nearly over, and it was an exciting year at Resources for Libraries and Lifelong Learning. Here are a few highlights:

After hours of webinars, emails, and phone calls to solicit recommendations and feedback, our new website, Job Seeker, was released. Job Seeker contains links to over a hundred resources for Wisconsin residents seeking employment. Libraries can link to the website directly, or embed the page into their own website!

Photo of branch library with red car parked in front
Marathon County Public Library - Unity Branch ca. 1992
Photo courtesy of the Marathon county Public Library
Link to item in DPLA
DPI partnered with the Milwaukee Public Library, UW-Madison, UW-Milwaukee, WiLS, the Wisconsin Historical Society, and Marquette University to launch the Wisconsin Service Hub of the Digital Public Library of America. DPLA gives cultural institutions like museums and libraries a way to provide access to their digital collections on a single, nationwide platform. At launch, Wisconsin became the 5th largest hub on the platform with nearly 400,000 records, with more to come!

To help make using BadgerLink as easy as possible, we developed a Set-Up Guide to help library and school staff give their users the best possible access to BadgerLink’s valuable resources. The Set-Up Guide outlines system requirements, automatic access and remote login information, vender-specific domains and IPs for internal network configuration, and more.

image of a card catalo
Card Catalog (source: Pixabay)
Did you know that a union catalog, developed in 1982, is still useful in 2016? We looked back on the development of one of the core pieces of our WISCAT program and highlighted recent developments that make it even more valuable now than when it was first established.

This year, after a contract change, magazine access was removed from Wisconsin’s Digital Library. Much of the same content has always been available in BadgerLink. The BadgerLink team is maintaining a list of this content to ensure that Wisconsin residents have uninterrupted access to their favorite popular magazines, including Real Simple, Field & Stream, Ebony, and many, many more.

We were happy to announce SHAREit, the underlying WISCAT software, will move to HTTPS before year end. This software also powers the BadgerLink Super Search. The move to HTTPS is important, because it will protect patron names, email addresses, passwords, searches, and interlibrary loan requests from being intercepted.

Picture of freshly picked vegetables
Courtesy of Pixabay
Each month the Wisconsin Digital Archives Collection Connection highlights documents published by state government covering current, newsworthy topics about life in Wisconsin. For example, did you know that Wisconsin has over 1,100 organic farms, second in the nation to California? Over 4,100 new documents were added to the collection in 2016 making the Wisconsin Digital Archives your connection to state government.

In October, BadgerLink focused on promoting Genealogy resources, releasing an interactive tutorial to help Wisconsin residents use our resources to tell their family story. Webinars on BadgerLink’s major genealogical resources, Wisconsin Historical Society, Access NewspaperARCHIVE, Archive of Wisconsin Newspapers, and HeritageQuest are also available.

Resource sharing isn’t only about getting books from outside a library system. Way back in February, we highlighted Document Delivery, a service that allows patrons to make an ILL request for a photocopy of a desired article. We asked some of our biggest users of document delivery for testimonials. To say they were happy with the service is an understatement!

Happy Holidays from all of us here at Resources for Libraries and Lifelong Learning! We are looking forward to another great year in 2017.

Posted by:
Ben Miller on behalf of the entire Resources for Libraries and Lifelong Learning team

Thursday, December 15, 2016

'Tis the Season for Consumer Protection

The Wisconsin Department of Agriculture, Trade and Consumer Protection (DATCP) Bureau of Consumer Protection is the state's primary consumer protection agency. According to their website, DATCP handles 100,000 new consumer complaints and inquiries each year and has returned approximately $4.4 million to consumers in 2015.

Each year the DATCP Bureau of Consumer Protection releases a series of  press releases on holiday-related issues in November and December. This year the agency has decided to release all nine releases together in a Holiday Release Packet available online.

Logo for the WI Department of Agriculture, Trade and Consumer Protection
Courtesy of the DATCP
The packet includes information to help keep consumers safe from a variety of scams that target consumers all year long, but even more so during the holidays. Learn more about a variety of topics including charity scams, gift card scams, gift card shopping, holiday promotions, layaway, online shopping, returns/exchanges, shipping scams and toy safety.

For more information, visit the Consumer Protection website. Consumers can also request information or assistance by emailing DATCP's Consumer Protection Hotline, or by calling their toll-free hotline at (800) 422-7128.

Post written by:
Abby Swanton, Resources for Libraries and Lifelong Learning

Tuesday, December 13, 2016

Guest User Options in WISCAT

Give your patrons access to more than just searching in WISCAT without making them log in!  By using guest user functionality, you can give your users the ability to make requests, track their ILLs, and more.  

Guest users may be allowed to 
  • Create lists of Title and Author from selected search results to print or email
User selects the Clipboard Session icon to email list or send it to printer
Add To Clipboard until ready to print/email list from Clipboard Session 
  • Submit interlibrary loan requests to be approved by staff
User has access to Request This Item button in WISCAT to complete an interlibrary loan request form
Request This Item

  • Track the status of the interlibrary loan requests they create 
To view status of ILL requests: Select tracking icon in library's WISCAT, enter name and password used in the ILL request form when it was submitted
Track ILL Requests 

NEW  -- Libraries may set a limit on the number of interlibrary loan requests each guest user can submit.  Until now a request limit could only be set on a user having an individual Patron user account created by library staff to log into WISCAT. 

When a guest user reaches the request limit, a message displays when s/he attempts to submit a new interlibrary loan request.  No new request can be created by that user until the time period set (number of requests per week or month) has passed or, if the limit is based on active status, a request completes its lifecycle (request updated to Check In by the lender). 

Message shows: You have reached your maximum number of ILL requests (3 out of a maximum of 3)
Message displays when request limit is reached 

Contact WISCAT staff for a guide to activating these guest options. 

Written by:
Vickie Long, Resources for Libraries & Lifelong Learning Team

Thursday, December 8, 2016

Fundraising Tips for Libraries

In what seems like an endless era of budget constraints, fundraising projects have become not just a supplement, but in some cases a means of survival. Methods of library fundraising vary as much as our libraries do—from small, casual efforts such as book or bake sales to multimillion dollar campaigns. Despite the scope of your fundraising project, you should be aware of some issues so that you can protect your library from unwanted consequences.
  • Raffles are a fun way to raise money at an event, but in order to conduct a raffle legally in Wisconsin you must first obtain a raffle license. Fortunately, a charitable organization can obtain this license from the Wisconsin Department of Administration. If you do not have an organization that qualifies, then a silent auction or game of skill might be a better fundraising option.
  • Fundraising campaigns that target a library’s users may seem to make good sense, but Chapter 43.30 prevents you from legally sharing your library records with your Friends or Foundation. Your library might be able to do a direct solicitation of library users, but enter this territory very cautiously. If you proceed, your library board should carefully consider the ramifications, as it might lead to a negative perception of the library.
  • Annual funds are a very popular way of asking for unrestricted support, and are typically conducted in October, November, or December, because they can be structured as a charitable (read: tax deductible) contribution. Potential donors may find that last chance to lower their taxes very appealing; just make sure that your Friends and Foundation membership drives do not coincide, as this may reduce contributions to the annual fund.
  • Planned gifts are an excellent way for donors to make significant contributions through wills and estate plans. These future gifts can allow the donor to support the long-term goals of the library, save on estate or capital gains taxes, and leave a legacy without giving up assets. If your library establishes a planned giving program, you will need to supply the library’s federal tax I.D. number. Donors may also designate the library as a beneficiary on life insurance policies.

Some of these tips pertain to Wisconsin only. For more information on fundraising in general, an excellent resource is available on the American Library Association website at

Written by Shannon Schultz, Public Library Development Team

Wednesday, December 7, 2016

Hour of Code--An Annual December Event

For many, December might be a month of snow festivities or celebrations of light, but it is also a month devoted to computer coding. If you are new to to the concept of code, this month presents an opportunity to give it a try!

Hour of Code™ Logo
“The 'Hour of Code™' is a nationwide initiative by Computer Science Education Week[] and[] to introduce millions of students to one hour of computer science and computer programming.”
A global movement by, Hour of Codeconsists of entry-level one-hour tutorials that are designed for all ages as a way to introduce yourself to coding. These tutorials are used in classrooms and libraries around the world as a way to engage with groups of students and people that are interested in learning and playing with code. Each year hosts an annual Hour of Codeto help encourage this global movement.
Screenshot of Scratch coding
A screenshot from an Hour of Code activity using Scratch,
created by coding newbie Tessa Michaelson Schmidt

The main goal of DPI's Coding Initiative in Wisconsin Public Libraries is to increase awareness about coding and computational thinking. Public libraries can play an integral part introducing their community to coding, whether through a library-led program or partnering with a school, neighboring library, or other non-profit organization. The Hour of Code is a good way for libraries that are interested in providing these opportunities to dip their toe into the water. The annual Hour of Code event, December 5-11, is a great way for you see what Hour of Code is all about. Go through one of the tutorials as a first trial and see how it might benefit members of all ages in your community.

Check out the Hour of Code  map to see if there is someone near you that is participating who potentially could be a future partner.

Written by:
Ryan Claringbole and Tessa Michaelson Schmidt
Public Library Development Team

Tuesday, December 6, 2016

LSTA Updates

LSTA Advisory Committee Evaluates Reviewer Recommendations

The projects, grant category rankings, and overall LSTA program for 2017 were reviewed by the LSTA Advisory Committee at its meeting on December 1, 2016. State Superintendent Tony Evers will announce the grant awards by mid-February 2017, provided the U.S. Congress and the President have approved a budget. The grant awards will be implemented from April 1, 2017-March 31, 2018.

Public libraries and public library systems submitted fifty nine (59) applications in nine (9) different categories for the Library Services and Technology Act (LSTA) projects to occur in 2017-2018. The applications requested funds for a variety of projects. Outside reviewers (librarians and other subject experts) evaluated the applications submitted in the competitive grant categories.

The preliminary dollars budgeted for each grant category, the dollars requested in the applications, and the number of applications received, are listed below. Some of the grant categories are noncompetitive; others are competitive.

Noncompetitive Grant Categories

• Delivery Services: $90,000 budgeted and requested; 2 applications
• Digital Public Library of America (DPLA)Support: $50,000 budgeted; 1 application
• Library System Technology Projects: $350,000 budgeted; 16 applications
• Outcome Measurement Support: $75,000 budgeted and $56,450 requested; 11 applications
• Public Library System Redesign (PLSR) Year #2: $172,000 budgeted and $172,000 requested

Competitive Grant Categories

• Content Creation: $100,000 budgeted; $94,897 requested; 7 applications
• Digitization of Local Historical Material: $20,000 budgeted; $42,144 requested; 7 applications
• Accessibility in Public Libraries/Public Library Systems: $60,000 budgeted; $90,218 requested;
8 applications
• Literacy Projects: $60,000 budgeted; $24,400 requested; 4 applications

The total amount budgeted for the local projects was $977,000 the total requested was $970,109.

Evaluation of the 2013-2017 LSTA Plan for Wisconsin

The Division for Libraries and Technology (DLT) hired Library Strategies working with Rainbow Research in St. Paul, MN as consultants to review the current LSTA Plan for Wisconsin.  2017 is the fifth year of the current LSTA Plan.

Rainbow Research has had several focus groups with persons knowledgeable about the LSTA programs and resources in technology, continuing education, youth & inclusive services, electronic resources, and interlibrary loan.  They have interviewed key staff in the Division for Libraries and Technology, and have sent a survey to more than 1100 persons who have knowledge of LSTA funded programs which include grants to libraries and library systems as well as all of the above service areas.  If you have received a survey link, please respond with feedback about the programs and/or services with which you are familiar.

The consultants will write the evaluation; the Division will review and edit as necessary and submit the report to IMLS by the end of March 2017.  Results of the survey will help to shape the next five year plan due to IMLS in June 2017.

Written by:
Terrie Howe, Public Library Development Team

Thursday, December 1, 2016

Digital Privacy and Public Libraries

People are more concerned about their digital privacy, but often do not know what the best resources are to help protect their privacy. Public libraries are a place that can offer to either share resources or host programs that go over the importance of digital privacy and the resources available. Patrons' digital privacy does not just come from tips and resources to help them manage their own accounts and networks, but also when they are using their library to go online.

Here are just a few resources available for you to read and/or share:

Data Privacy Project ( -  This link goes to the Mapping Data Flows page of the Data Privacy Project, a website dedicated to helping libraries and communities prepare for the "challenges of always-on, digitally networked, and easily surveilled lifestyles." The Mapping Data Flows page gives an illustrated look at what happens when a patron signs on to an internet computer in the library.

Security in a Box ( - Online toolkit developed to share resources on digital security for activists. The page linked is one of many, focusing on steps on basic security for Windows.

Library Freedom Project ( - The Library Freedom Project is a Knight News Challenge-funded project to partner libraries, technologists, and privacy advocates to help share information on privacy rights and responsibilities. The page linked above consists of dozens of resources on privacy for libraries.

There is also the National Information Standards Organization's (NISO) Privacy Principles on User's Digital Privacy in Library, Publisher, and Software-Provider Systems (

Does your library provide any programs or resources on digital privacy to your patrons? Please share your comments and other resources you recommend on digital privacy over on the WI Public Library Technology Google Community.

Written by:
Ryan Claringbole, Public Library Development Team