This summer I’ve given updates on our work at the ALA Annual Conference in June and at last month’s DPLA Open Board + Community Meeting. I shared a summary of where we’ve been, talked about what we are working on now, and previewed where we are headed. For the latter, we shared that DPLA would soon begin a strategic visioning process. As the summer comes to a close, I’m excited to share with you our plans for this process.
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The past week has been especially exciting and meaningful for all of us at DPLA. Last Thursday, we announced the launch of The Banned Book Club, an effort to ensure that all readers have access to the books they want to read, and soon after, the project was promoted by Barack Obama as part of a series of social media pushes calling attention to the critical importance of intellectual freedom.
Last week DPLA hosted our first (virtual) holiday reception. It was a risk– none of us had ever been to a virtual holiday reception before, and we weren’t sure exactly what we would do, or even if anyone would come. But with the encouragement of some of our friends (thanks, Keila!), we took that risk, and ended up with a gathering of more than 40 public librarians, college and middle school educators, technologists and funders. We were joined by DPLA founders, longtime collaborators, and people whom we only met this year. I was reminded of the value of taking risks; the collective effort that is DPLA is itself a risk. And I was struck, as I have been so many times this year, by the breadth, dedication, and resilience of the extended DPLA community. With that in mind, I wanted to reflect on some of our achievements this year.
Many of us are feeling a mix of anger, rage, sadness, and fear this fall, particularly this week in the wake of Kentucky authorities’ refusal to hold to account the police officers who killed Breonna Taylor. At the Digital Public Library of America we have been reflecting on our roles and responsibilities. We were founded, 10 years ago next week, with a mission to ensure equitable access to digital knowledge, and at this moment we feel an added urgency to make certain that our deeds align with our stated aims.
At DPLA our mission is to ensure equitable access to knowledge for all. Central to that mission is our commitment to ensuring that everyone’s stories are told.
Over the last few weeks, the DPLA team has been, like all of you, striving to adapt to our new reality while also checking in on family, friends and colleagues. We’ve been grateful to hear from many of you not only about the new challenges you’re facing, but about how our community is coming together in new ways to meet this moment and forge a way forward.
Dear Friends of DPLA, I wanted to give you an update on our work at the Digital Public Library of America during these uneasy and rapidly changing times. The DPLA was conceived of nine and a half years ago out of a notion that knowledge would increasingly be produced, shared and consumed digitally, and that […]
On the DPLA Ebooks Team, we are excited about our role supporting library-driven platforms for e-content delivery. Check out what we are up to this fall, and stay tuned for updates and possibilities for innovation over the coming months.
We are thrilled to announce that Katherine Maher, executive director of the Wikimedia Foundation, and independent consultant Laura DeBonis have joined the Digital Public Library of America’s Board of Directors.
Later this week, the Digital Public Library of America will be in New Orleans for the annual meeting of the American Library Association, where we will be talking about our ebook work after one year of running a successful pilot and participating in a national ebook summit. Learn more about the tools and collections we’ve built and our collaborative approach to maximizing access to ebooks.
This week, we’re convening our network of member organizations for an in-person gathering, a manifestation of a program we launched last fall to ensure that our work is grounded in and informed by the reality of the work of our community-based partners.
The Digital Public Library of America will be at ALA Midwinter this weekend. On Saturday afternoon, Executive Director John Bracken will be sharing thoughts after two months on the job, and then will seek help in exploring some of the questions before ahead for DPLA.