Comment NOW on the Future of the Internet

Should the Internet remain an open platform for speech and commerce? Take the opportunity to weigh in on this important democratic issue. There are three questions the Federal Communications Commission is asking the public to answer:
1. Should there be an outright ban on fast lanes?
2. Should broadband access be classified as a Title II common carrier (a telecommunications service treating all traffic equally)?
3. Should the new Open Internet provisions also cover wireless (mobile) broadband?

You can leave a comment answering those questions in two ways: either go directly to the FCC form (the high volume of comments being filed may require more than one attempt to access to the FCC form) or send an e-mail to the FCC’s dedicated inbox, (openinternet@
fcc.gov) Why is it net neutrality important to you? In what specific way would restoring or upending it help or hurt? What, specifically, would you like the FCC to do about it?

 

Eleven library groups have released net neutrality principles that adopt enforceable policies, ensure neutrality on public networks, prohibit the blocking of legal websites, and forbid paid prioritization that speed traffic for the privileged: • American Association of Community Colleges • American Association of State Colleges and Universities • American Council on Education • American Library • Association • Association of American Universities • Association of Public and Land-Grant Universities • Association of Research Libraries • Chief Officers of State Library Agencies • Educause • Modern Language Association • National Association of Independent Colleges and Universities

Ensure Neutrality on All Public Networks: Neutrality is an essential characteristic of public broadband Internet access.The principles that follow must apply to all broadband providers and Internet Service Providers (ISPs) who provide service to the general public, regardless of underlying transmission technology (e.g., wireline or wireless) and regardless of local market conditions.

 

Prohibit Blocking: ISPs and public broadband providers should not be permitted to block access to legal web sites, resources, applications, or Internet-based services.

 

Protect Against Unreasonable Discrimination: Every person in the United States should be able to access legal content, applications, and services over the Internet, without “unreasonable discrimination” by the owners and operators of public broadband networks and ISPs. This will ensure that ISPs do not give favorable transmission to their affiliated content providers or discriminate against particular Internet services based on the identity of the user, the content of the information, or the type of service being provided. “Unreasonable discrimination” is the standard in Title II of the Communications Act; the FCC has generally applied this standard to instances in which providers treat similar customers in significantly different ways.

 

Prohibit Paid Prioritization: Public broadband providers and ISPs should not be permitted to sell prioritized transmission to certain content, applications, and service providers over other Internet traffic sharing the same network facilities. Prioritizing certain Internet traffic inherently disadvantages other content, applications, and service providers—including those from higher education and libraries that serve vital public interests.

 

Prevent Degradation: Public broadband providers and ISPs should not be permitted to degrade the transmission of Internet content, applications, or service providers, either intentionally or by failing to invest in adequate broadband capacity to accommodate reasonable traffic growth.

 

Enable Reasonable Network Management: Public broadband network operators and ISPs should be able to engage in reasonable network management to address issues such as congestion, viruses, and spam as long as such actions are consistent with these principles. Policies and procedures should ensure that legal network traffic is managed in a content-neutral manner.

 

Provide Transparency: Public broadband network operators and ISPs should disclose network management practices publicly and in a manner that 1) allows users as well as content, application, and service providers to make informed choices; and 2) allows policy-makers to determine whether the practices are consistent with these network neutrality principles. This rule does not require disclosure of essential proprietary information or information that jeopardizes network security.

 

Continue Capacity-Based Pricing of Broadband Internet Access Connections: Public broadband providers and ISPs may continue to charge consumers and content, application,and service providers for their broadband connectionsto the Internet, and may receive greater compensation for greater capacity chosen by the consumer or content, application, and service provider.

 

Adopt Enforceable Policies: Policies and rules to enforce these principles should be clearly stated and transparent. Any public broadband provider or ISP that is found to have violated these policies or rules should be subject to penalties, after being adjudicated on a case-by-case basis.

Accommodate Public Safety: Reasonable accommodations to these principles can be made based on evidence that such accommodations are necessary for public safety, health, law enforcement, national security, or emergency situations.

 

Maintain the Status Quo on Private Networks: Owners and operators of private networks that are not openly available to the general public should continue to operate according to the long-standing principle and practice that private networks are not subject to regulation. End users (such as households, companies, coffee shops, schools, or libraries) should be free to decide how they use the broadband services they obtain from network operators and ISPs.

2013 Wisconsin Public Library Data

 

The Department of Public Instruction has the following statistics for Wisconsin public libraries posted as Excel files:

  • State totals and averages
  • Library system-wide statistics in order by system
  • County-wide statistics
  • Public library in order by municipality
  • Public library by library system and county – Includes statistics for every public library, county, and system in the state. Arrangement is alphabetical by system, then county, then by each library. County and library system totals are also provided.

Jump Start Your Genealogy Research!

Bring your family history to life and discover your heritage through a series of workshops with Vickie Chupurdia, a nationally recognized expert on genealogical research. The UW-Superior Center for Continuing Education will be offering the four genealogy workshops on Saturdays from September 13 to October 11:

 

Session 1 - September 13:

• Introduction to Genealogy Research • Overview of where to look for information • Organization of materials

Session 2 - September 20: • Using public libraries and archives • Accessing census data and court records

Session 3 - September 27: • Accessing land records • Using newspapers • Internet research strategies and techniques

Session 4 - October 11: • What you can learn "Around Town" • Accessing military records • Sharing your research

 

Cost: All four classes $175; 1st class only: $50

(NOTE: Class one is a prerequisite for the other three classes - you can register for the other three after taking the first class but your total cost will be $200 instead of $175)

Free Library Courses

Through the generous support of OCLC, the Gates Foundation, and many state library agencies across the U.S., WebJunction provides timely and relevant learning content for library staff to access anytime, from anywhere. Simply create an account at learn.webjunction.org, and explore the catalog of library-focused self-paced courses and webinars. Certificates of completion are available after completing any course or webinar enrolled in from the catalog. Over the next year, WebJunction will continue to grow its catalog of learning content, and will add new resources on topics of high interest. Happy learning!

Seniors – Another Kind of Digital Divide


America’s seniors have been late adopters to the world of technology and their movement into digital life continues to deepen, according to newly released data from the Pew Research Center. The report, Older Adults and Technology Use, examines technology use by Americans ages 65 or older.


Today, 59% of seniors report they go online. The group of older Americans with relatively substantial technology assets and a positive view toward the benefits of online platforms leans toward younger, more highly educated, or more affluent seniors. The population of seniors largely disconnected from the world of digital tools and services, both physically and psychologically tends to be older and less affluent, often with significant challenges with health or disability). Many seniors remain disconnected from online and mobile life; 41% do not use the internet at all, 53% do not have broadband access at home, and 23% do not use cell phones. Digital engagement among seniors fall off notably for those over 75 years of age.


As the internet plays an increasingly central role in connecting Americans of all ages to news and information, government services, health resources, and opportunities for social support, these divisions are noteworthy—particularly for the many organizations (such as libraries) and individual caregivers who serve the older adult population. To read a summary of findings, or access the entire report, visit the PewResearch Internet Project.


Sharing Historical Photos

Do you represent a library, historical society or museum in a small Wisconsin town or city (population under 6,000)? Recollection Wisconsin needs your input! Our program is seeking to expand online access to photos, documents, artifacts and other historical materials from small and rural communities around the state. 


Whether your organization already has a strong digitization program in place, you’re just starting to think about going digital, or digitization is not a priority for you right now, your responses to our survey will help us improve our services to small cultural heritage organizations across Wisconsin.

Our short survey is available online and should take between 5-15 minutes to complete. Please submit your responses by Monday, June 16. Survey results will be made available online later this summer at recollectionwisconsin.org. For questions about the survey, please contact Recollection Wisconsin Program Manager Emily Pfotenhauer at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. or 608-616-9756.

The Recollection Wisconsin program helps Wisconsin libraries, archives, historical societies and museums digitize and share online their unique historical collections. The program is sponsored by WiLS (Wisconsin Library Services) in partnership with the Milwaukee Public Library, the University of Wisconsin-Madison and the Wisconsin Historical Society. Financial support is provided by a grant from the Nicholas Family Foundation.

WLA Scholarship for Small Libraries

scholarship opportunity is available for directors of small libraries interested in attending the Wisconsin Library Association Annual conference held this fall in Wisconsin Dells at the Kalahari Resort & Convention Center November 4 through 7. The WLA conference offers numerous opportunities to engage in programs, exhibits, activities and presentations.

The scholarship will be awarded to cover lodging, registration, meals and mileage. Application deadline is August 11. For more information visit the Small Library section of WLA.

2015 LSTA Grant Guidelines

The grant information and guidelines publication for the 2015 Wisconsin Library Services and Technology Act (LSTA) is now posted on the Public Library Development website in a format suitable for printing, along with an FAQ about LSTA applications and awards. The guidelines present the LSTA noncompetitive and competitive grant categories for 2015 for public libraries and regional public library systems, in addition to instructions on the application process, and examples of the application and evaluation forms.  An LSTA grant writing guide in pdf format clarifies terminology and expectations in the application process.

New OverDrive Help

OverDrive, provider of downloadable e-Books and e-Audiobooks for Wisconsin's Digital Library, recently went live with a new support interface that features a modern design, streamlined navigation options, and quick links that make it easier to get started and see how things work.  You can now search through a database of help articles, videos, compatible device profiles, and troubleshooting links. Visit the OverDrive Blogs to learn more about the new features and visit the new OverDrive Help site to experience it for yourself!