The Best! weekly.  Photos, ideas, and information from New York's rural libraries in your inbox!  An eNewsletter of the Rural Libraries Round Table
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September 9, 2016

The Best! Notes 
Eli Guinnee, Editor, 

In case you missed it, the ALA has updated its privacy guidelines.  It's so important in rural and small libraries that we take seriosly patron privacy and protection of patron information.  Many of us know what it's like to live in a town where everyone knows everyone else and everyonelse's business. Make your library the place where privacy is valued!  

Find the updated guidelines below.  Well worth a quick read.  There will be at least a couple things you haven't thought of, even for the most privacy-aware.  
Library Privacy Guidelines for Public Access Computers and Networks
Library Privacy Guidelines for Library Websites, OPACs, and Discovery Services
Library Privacy Guidelines for Library Management Systems
Library Privacy Guidelines for Data Exchange Between Networked Devices and Services
Photo of the week

Click above to learn more 

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The Best Advice!

Ask for Advice | Give Advice

This Week's Question: Supporting Young Entrepreneurs

Q: A favorite library kid recently asked if he could have a little space to set up a small business in the library. He wants to sell ‘good quality’ snacks and drinks to other middle school/high school aged students to raise money for a trip to Japan. I really don’t want to say no to him because it's such a great opportunity for learning about running a business but this would go directly against our policy of businesses profiting in the library (a big no-no). Is there a creative way that I could make this happen for the sake of this young entrepreneur? --The Man

Last Week's Q & Reader Answers

Q: I'd like to build a teen area.  What is the best location? And what type of furniture would be ideal?--A Rural Director

A: Teens definitely want to be away from younger kids, so I would make your Teen Area as far away as possible. Also, since teens can be loud, it is probably wise to keep it away from quiet areas of the library. In our library we kept it open and wanted to have a clear line of site from the circulation area, in order to make sure that teens are not acting up. Bright colors and comfy furniture, like bean bags or recliners seem to attract teens. They also want the latest tech devices or some laptops or iPads just for their use. Making the area friendly and welcoming is important and asking teens to offer suggestions will help them "own" the area. Good luck to you!  -- Another Rural Director

A:  The trick is to make the teens feel like they have their own secluded space but without it actually being too secluded.  Make sure it's not a multi-use space, it should be dedicated to the teens full time so they know it's always there for them.  Let them help pick out the furniture (within reason-- maybe give them a few options) and do the decorating!  Don't have a teen advisory group yet?  Perfect time to start it, when they have a real project to work on.  --YA Girl
Disagree with any of the advice above?  Add your two cents here.

The Best! Disclaimer: Advice offered in this column is for entertainment purposes only. Please assume that The Best! readers are not lawyers, and while all The Best! readers are super intelligent geniuses with many years of experience, please nonetheless consult your lawyer or library system on legal issues, HR snafus, policy questions, and other areas in which anonymous comments from strangers might normally be treated with caution.

The Best! Poll 

Should non-automated public libraries be required to dump the card catalog and automate?

Should Rowling write more Harry Potter books?

The Best! 

This week's stat is: 


(Mystery revealed at bottom of page)

The Best! NewsNews


Lots Happening at Red Hook Public Library 

Silver Creek's Anderson Lee Library Banned Books Display


Where are these libraries?

Click to locate featured libraries and find contact info.


*New Opportunities in Red

September 25 - October 1—Banned Books Week
Resources here. 
October 27-29 @ Fargo, North DakotaARSL Conference 
     The Association for Rural Small Libraries Annual Conference 
November 2-5 @ SaratogaNYLA Annual Conference (Details here)  
     Contact Carole Kupelian,, to sign up for a slot to man the RLRT booth!
January 20-24-- Ala Midwinter Atlanta
     Registration Open

The Best! tips 

Valle Blair
Youth Services Librarian, CCLS

The 8th annual Dot Day is September 15th 

International Dot Day will be celebrating its 8th year on September 15, 2016.  Based on the book, The Dot by Peter Reynolds, this is a day for creativity and thinking.  Have a Dot Day celebration!  Read the book!  Have your patrons each create a dot and put them all together as a collaborative dot mural for your library (coffee filters make a nice dot-ish base)! 
Sign up for Dot Day (it’s free) and download the Educator’s Handbook full of great ideas.    ‘Make your mark’ on Dot Day! 
Excerpt: Read the full spotlight here.  


Skaneateles Library: Bringing the Library to You! 

Submitted by Claudia Depkin. 

In January 2015, the Skaneateles Library took a major step outside its walls. That’s when they partnered with the Skaneateles YMCA and Community Center to bring library materials to their shared public. 

In this town of 7,209 in New York’s beautiful Finger Lakes Region, Library Director Nickie Marquis envisioned a way to engage library customers outside the building. “We're in an historic, downtown area with no parking - so getting in and out of the library can be difficult, especially during the busy summer and Christmas seasons. We wanted to make it easier and more convenient for patrons to pick up books, so we decided to try the locker.”  ... Read More

Great things happening at your library?

Send your photos, news, happenings, ideas and information to Eli Guinnee, editor.  
(if you got this by email, just hit reply)

Become a Rural Libraries Roundtable member 

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NYLA members can now add additional Section and Round Table memberships to their existing membership online!   
Log In to
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4. Choose the Rural Libraries Round Table (cause we're The Best! if you haven't heard)
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RLRT Website
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 Back to top

And the mystery stat is...

The percentage of public libraries in NY with Broadband Download Speeds under 15mbps: 69%

And 80% are under 25mbps, the FCC-defined minimum for broadband.  So in fact 80% of New York libraries don't have what the FCC would define as broadband.  Yikes! 

*According to a recent report from the New York State Library, Electronic Books and Public Libraries in New York State. 

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