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LBPH Newsletter

LBPH Newsletter Summer 2008

COUNTDOWN TO DIGITAL

As this newsletter goes to print, it is known that the National Library Service (NLS) has contracted with the Shinano Kenshi Corporation-Plextor to manufacture digital talking book players beginning in late 2008. The initial production calls for the delivery of 223,837 players. The NLS estimates having 700,000 patrons.

This schedule should result in players becoming available to New Mexico patrons by the mid to late spring of 2009. Initial distribution will go to seven regional libraries that are part of quality review. New Mexico is not in this group.
It is not clear what the amount of digital players New Mexico will receive on a monthly basis; however, the first 400500 will be available by law to military service veterans.

After veterans, it is thought that the next group of patrons to receive digital players will be active borrowers, who have few, if any overdue books. Eventually, all interested patrons will receive digital players but the release of equipment may take up to five years, depending upon Congressional funding. 

In addition to the number of overdue books being a factor in determining early recipients of digital talking book players, it is becoming more important for the library to conserve on book copies. Because of the digital transition and initial underfunding by Congress of the transition, the NLS has had to limit the number of copies of titles that libraries can order. This library can now order about half the number of copies of audiocassettes as before. Furthermore, the retrospective allotment of digital books that the NLS will be providing has currently been reduced by about 75 per cent.

While the library can duplicate audiocassettes and may, eventually, be able to duplicate digital books, budget and staffing limit its capacity; therefore, it has become more important for patrons to return books in a timely fashion. To expedite returns, this library will be reducing its borrowing time from 60 to 45 days. If a book does not have a waiting list, it can be renewed another two times. Additionally, we plan to implement a policy whereby patrons will be limited to the borrowing of ten books at a time. Digitally downloaded books will, of course, not be part of this limit.

The library has not issued overdue notices in the past and hopes to be able to avoid the expense by encouraging patrons to be conscientious in the return of books upon completion. Regional libraries for the blind cannot collect fines for overdue materials, although services may be suspended, if a patron has an extraordinary number of overdue materials. We hope that by communicating our concerns about reduced availability of book copies in the future that patrons will cooperate by returning books on time, so that other patrons may benefit from a more limited supply.

RECENT RECORDING STUDIO PRODUCTIONS

RNM00101—Child of a Rainless Year written by Jane Lindskold and narrated by Jeanne Zechmeister. Returning to her childhood home in Las Vegas, New Mexico, Mira Fenn investigates her mother's life, setting into motion strange events. As she begins to suspect the power to which she may be heir, the house itself appears to be waking up.

RNM00115—Know-It-All written by A.J. Jacobs and narrated by Sat Nirmal Khalsa. Part memoir, part education, chronicles NPR contributor's quest to fill the gaps in his Ivy League education by reading all thirty-two volumes of the Encyclopedia Britannica from A to Z. Reveals the struggle between the all-consuming need for factual knowledge and the gift of hard-won wisdom.

RNM00129—Desert Desperadoes:The Banditti of Southwestern New Mexico written by Bob Alexander and narrated by Walter McWalter. Southwestern New Mexico hosted quite a number of outlaws: Billy the Kid, John Ringo, "Curly Bill" Brocius, Kit Joy, John Kinney and Pony Diehl. But there were also lawmen like Pat Garrett, and "Dangerous Dan" Tucker, so feared that even the storied Earps changed their names when going through his territory.

RNM00135—Peter Becomes a Trail Man written and narrated by William C. Carson. Based on an actual trek on the Santa Fe Trail, this is the story of the adventures, hazards, and hardships, of Peter, a twelve-year-old boy and his small dog Brownie, who in 1853 traveled from St. Louis to Santa Fe to find his father who had left the previous year after the death of Peter's mother.

RNM00140—Coyota written by Martha Egan and narrated by Joyce Townsend. Nena Herrera-Casey (Coyota) is a young Mexican-American woman living a peaceful life teaching Spanish part-time at a university in Albuquerque. She overhears the plotting of crooked Drug Enforcement agents, who then set her up on false charges, and her worst nightmare stalks her through the Mexican desert.

RNM00142—The Pueblo Revolt: The Secret Rebellion that Drove the Spaniards Out of the Southwest by David Roberts and narrated by William Scheer. In 1680, a brave shaman named Pope, united the fiercely independent Pueblos of New Mexico in a revolt against Spanish oppression—the only time in North American history that conquering Europeans were thoroughly expelled from the territory.