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Letter to Libraries Online

A Monthly Newsletter from the Oregon State Library

Volume 26, Issue 12, December 2016

Library Board News
State Library News
Contacts at the State Library

Vision: All Oregonians have the information essential to be engaged citizens, to strengthen our communities, and to build a prosperous state.

Mission: The State Library provides leadership and resources to continue growing vibrant library services for Oregonians with print disabilities, the Legislature and state government, and all Oregonians through local libraries.

Library Board News

Board Appoints New Advisory Council Members

At its October 28th meeting, the State Library Board appointed new members to the Library Services and Technology Act (LSTA) Advisory Council and the Talking Book and Braille Library Advisory Council.

The new members for LSTA Advisory Council will each begin their three-year term in January. The new members are as follows:

• Mark Peterson, representing Academic Libraries
• Brent Mills, representing Information Technology
• Matthew Baiocchi, representing Public Libraries
• Betsy Chase, representing Library Users
• Richenda Hawkins, representing Underserved/Underrepresented

Cami Nielson, representing public libraries, was appointed for a four-year term on the Talking Books Advisory Council. More information on the Advisory Councils can be found on the State Library Board and Advisory Councils webpage.

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State Library News

Connecting with your Community: Social Media Guide for Public Libraries

PresentationImageIn November, Customer Service Specialist Sarah Pearson was able to join the Umatilla County Special Library District for their Fall In-Service, where they requested a presentation on social media best practices for public libraries. As part of her position with the State Library, Sarah manages the agency’s social media presence. She felt that giving this presentation would be a great opportunity to expand her own knowledge and share her experience with our fantastic Oregon libraries.

Primarily focusing on Facebook, Sarah’s presentation provided an overview of social media platforms, best practices, and outlined a social media marketing plan. The presentation then dove into Facebook best practices, ending with some additional resources. The group discussed targeting posts to specific audiences, including Spanish-speakers; as well as budgetary and time obstacles to success. There is a fantastic group of library professionals in Umatilla County!

Here is the link to see the full presentation - Connecting with your Community: Social Media Guide for Public Libraries.

If you have any questions, feel free to contact Sarah Pearson directly (503-378-2464). She would love to talk with you!


Oregon Books on BARD

BARD LogoWithin the last couple of years, the National Library Service (NLS) has started allowing network libraries to upload locally-recorded books to BARD (Braille and Audio Reading Download), as long as the books meet specific standards. We at the Oregon Talking Book and Braille Library have done a fair job converting the books we paid other libraries to record for us years ago from cassette to digital, but our conversions do not meet BARD standards.

Recently, however, we reached out to the Idaho Talking Books Library and asked if they would be willing to remaster the four books they have recorded for us so they meet BARD standards. The Idaho library graciously agreed, and within a couple of weeks all four books were good to go.

We then contacted NLS and were added to a pilot program for libraries without their own recording studios but which have books they would like to upload to BARD. We passed all phases of the pilot program smoothly, and are pleased to announce that all four books are now available for download from BARD!

The four books are as follows:

The Hearts of Horses by Molly Gloss
A Sweetness to the Soul (Dreamcatcher book #1) by Jane Kirkpatrick
Love to Water My Soul (Dreamcatcher book #2) by Jane Kirkpatrick
A Gathering of Finches (Dreamcatcher book #3) by Jane Kirkpatrick


End of an Era

CassettesDigital PlayerIn 1968, the National Library Service (NLS) launched a pilot program to test reader response to cassette machines and cassette books in the regional library network. On November 15, 2016, 48 years later, Talking Book and Braille Library ended our cassette program by shipping out our last cassettes for recycling. At one point, the collection contained over 57,000 titles. Over time, the tapes became damaged and worn from use and age.

In 2009, NLS began issuing digital players and books on cartridges, which are oversized flash drives. Each cartridge contains one book whereas a book on cassette may have contained multiple cassettes. Eligible readers today have access to a collection of 65,888 titles through BARD (Braille and Audio Reading Download). Not only can readers receive physical copies through the mail, they can also choose to download books for themselves. Contact the Oregon Talking Book and Braille Library for more information about the program. (Photo credit: National Federation of the Blind)

Free Online Learning for Oregon Library Staff

Skillsoft LogoGreat learning opportunities are just a click away! All staff from Oregon academic, public, school, and tribal libraries have free access to over 500 online courses, 30,000 short instructional videos (2 – 8 minutes) and job aids on a wide range of technology and business topics through our state subscription to Skillsoft, an all self-paced, online learning website where you can take a course when it fits your schedule. Library staff can pick up great tips and techniques from the business world through this free resource. The Skillsoft site was recently upgraded and we think you’ll like the new learner interface as well as the content that can help you meet your individual learning needs.

Here are just a few of the courses that you will be able to take:

• Planning and Preparing an Operating Budget
• Interpersonal Communication: Targeting your Message
• First Steps for Turning Around a Performance Problem
• Time Management: Ready, Set…FOCUS!

There is also a variety of courses to strengthen your technology skills on topics such as these:

• Privacy and Information Security
• Designing Effective PowerPoint Presentations
• Social Networking Services, Strategy and Management

Visit our website to get started today! Questions? Please contact Darci Hanning, 503-378-2527.


2016 Oregon Summer Reading Brief Now Available!

Oregon public libraries are critical community partners in addressing the summer learning slide where underserved youth lose reading skills while school is out for the summer. As many as 75,027 children and teens read enough during the summer to finish their local public library’s summer reading program.

Public libraries also made extra efforts to get underserved youth to participate in summer reading by translating materials into Spanish, presenting activities in Spanish, taking summer reading to free summer lunch sites, and reaching out to schools, daycares, and afterschool programs. Children and teens who participate in public library summer reading programs are more likely to maintain or improve their reading skills during summer vacation. Read the 2016 Oregon Summer Reading Brief to learn more.

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Oregon State Library

Library Support and Development Services: 503-378-2525, Ferol Weyand, Darci Hanning, Ann Reed, Jennifer Maurer, Katie Anderson, Tamara Ottum, Arlene Weible, Susan Westin.

Oregon Talking Book and Braille Library Manager: 503-378-5435, Susan Westin.
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Government Information and Library Services Manager: Vacant.

State Librarian: 503-378-4367, MaryKay Dahlgreen.

Letter to Libraries Online Editor: 503-378-5015, Jessica Rondema.

Letter to Libraries Online is published monthly by the Oregon State Library. It is available free of charge and is published only in electronic form on the publications page on the Oregon State Library's website.

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