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November 2020 Library Tech Newsbytes

What's new in library tech! Welcome to our monthly collection of fun and hopefully useful news items from our great Twitter feed and wherever else we find them.

Happy Native American Heritage Month! We have lots of news for you this month including some heartening digital inclusion news from the Lower Brule Sioux Tribe in Central South Dakota. But that's not all! It's end-of-year fundraising season, so we have some handy newsbytes to help you get some much-needed extra funds. Here's our lineup this month.

  • Libraries in the Election
  • Library Resources for #GivingTuesday
  • Social Media Image Size Guide for 2020
  • What It Would Take to Make the Internet Accessible to Everyone
  • Some Heartening Digital Inclusion News from the Lower Brule Sioux Tribe in Central South Dakota
  • Single Stop USA: Find Essential Benefits for Your Patrons
  • The New Internet Archive Scholarly Search Platform
  • Libraries 2020 Resources for Homeschooling
  • The Clipomatic app for turning your words into captions for your videos

Here's your library tech newsbytes for November 2020.

Libraries in the Election

American Libraries magazine has kept track of several library funding referenda around the country this election season. In multiple cities, funding for better broadband Internet for libraries and other users was on the ballot. Several referenda of course were to extend library hours, expand services, and sustain funding for materials. Lots of them were for buildings and maintenance, some of which had been destroyed by storms this year, as in Iowa. Fortunately in August, the Phillipsburg Town Council in New Jersey rejected an ordinance that would have allowed voters to decide whether the Phillipsburg Free Public Library should be dissolved.

Library Resources for #GivingTuesday

More and more libraries are participating in GivingTuesday. It happens each year on the Tuesday after Thanksgiving. It will be here on December 1. Over the past seven years, it has grown into a global movement that inspires hundreds of millions of people to give, collaborate, and celebrate generosity. Last December 3, U.S. nonprofits and libraries raised nearly $2 billion. Here are some great resources for participating this year.

Social Media Image Size Guide for 2020

Are you tired of guessing what size images fit on Facebook, Pinterest, Twitter, or Instagram? Worry no longer. Social Media Today has come out with a handy social media image size guide for 2020.

What It Would Take to Make the Internet Accessible to Everyone

The COVID-19 pandemic has sharpened public awareness of the massive digital divide among U.S. low-income families. The need for broadband turns out to be nearly double what the FCC estimated it to be in 2019. There is lots of sound and fury about all this, but Emily Stewart of Vox got to work and examined what it would take to make the Internet accessible for all.

Some Heartening Digital Inclusion News

Argus Leader reports that the Lower Brule Sioux Tribe in central South Dakota have used CARES Act funding to supply computers and low-cost, high-speed Internet to all students and teachers across the entire 207-square-mile reservation. They're using digital radio waves technology. The Internet network cost $250,000 (not very much).

Single Stop: Find Essential Benefits for Your Patrons

Single Stop provides low-income Americans with a convenient gateway to a wider range of services and benefits. Sites connect visitors first and foremost to food stamps, local food pantries, housing programs, and jobs. Single Stop's innovative platform screens clients for benefits connecting them to a myriad of public resources. From their home or with a Single Stop case worker, clients can determine their benefits eligibility and get application information. Our technology suite provides connections to key resources and supports partners developing a network of wraparound services to meet individuals' needs. They have locations in 10 states so far.

The New Internet Archive Scholarly Search Platform

Open Culture reports that nearly 200 open access academic journals vanished between 2000 and 2019 and another 900 journals are in danger of disappearing. To address this issue, Internet Archive has created Internet Archive Scholar, which preserves more than 25 million research articles. This free service features a full text search index of digitized articles published from the 18th century to the latest Open Access conference proceedings. Internet Archive may run into copyright legal issues with this new service from academic publishers like they did with conventional publishers objecting to materials on their National Emergency Library last spring.

Libraries 2020 Resources for Home Schooling

Libraries 2020 has assembled some great resources for home schooling patrons. As the school year wears on with COVID spikes, parents are increasingly interested in home schooling (or home schooling from the library) due to concerns over the safety of their families. Here is a sampling.


Thanks to my good colleagues at TechSoup Canada for telling me about Clipomatic. It is a handy $5 mobile app that easily turns your words into captions for your videos. Super useful.

We hope you like our latest batch of newsbytes this month!