Links of interest: August 20th, 2011

Welcome to the promised “links of doom” post – there’s 39 links in here. I am doing this before I acquire more. (I am also working on a set of job hunting resource links, and some other stuff.)

In other news, I had a lovely short hike in some nearby trails this morning. Maine remains gorgeous.

sunlight falling through pine trees in a forest in Maine, landing on a birch tree

(here, have a photo I took on my walk: this is a maintained set of trails about a mile from my home.)

Why information literacy matters:

Instructional resources:

Academic libraries:

Access and assistance:

First: I am currently really frustrated with Google’s approach to the pseudonym issue (which affects me and a number of people I know, for reasons elaborated in links in this section), and that’s making me not want to use the site, even with my legal name (which I use for work-related things). But I also wanted to highlight a couple of tools for people who do want to use it, or at least try it out.

Anyway, the approach to naming issues has been really problematic (the short version is that Google has been suspending people who use a pseudonym, what looks like a pseudonym, or nicknames that they use widely, but are not their legal name. After starting with a policy of “use the name other people call you.”)

Denise, co-founder of Dreamwidth, has a great post about name policies in general. She highlights something I really appreciate: why do some places insist on just one name and format of name?

Socially, it’s long been common that we might have a formal name, a family nickname, the thing our friends from high school call us but no one else does, the name we use at work, and much more. Why can’t we pick the one we want to use as long as we’re not using it to defraud?

Likewise, having volunteered under her management on the LiveJournal Terms of Service team for about 18 months, I agree with her notes about abuse from legal names vs. chosen names, and that in that setting, that some of the creepiest and most difficult cases were people using what were clearly their legal names on the site.

And she links to My Name Is Me, a project of people who use self-chosen names for a variety of reasons, about why they do that. (I agree with her that I like the term autonymity for that…)

danah boyd also has a great post on “real names” policies are an abuse of power.

GeekFeminism has been closely tracking the issues with Google’s ban of pseudonyms (and other names they don’t think are ‘real’).  Some of the most awesome posts include:

And finally, Skud (one of the co-founders of the GeekFeminism blog and widely known as a presenter by that name) had her Google+ account suspended and has been documenting the process. (As she notes, she was a Google employee until shortly before this happened before leaving for other reasons, so she had some contacts within the company.)


Living online:

And other tidbits:

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Hi, I’m Jen

Librarian, infovore, and general geek, likely to write comments about books, link collections, and other thoughts related to how we find, use, and take joy in information.

I'm the Research Librarian at the Perkins School for the Blind

More about my job and a day in the life

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