Emily Rose Johnson: New Staff Profile

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Emily

Where were you born?

I was born on Long Island and lived almost my entire life in Suffolk County. I spent a few years in Westchester and now live in Chelsea.

What languages do you speak?

I’m working on learning Italian, but I’m better at reading (with a dictionary on hand, please) than speaking. Continue reading

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Libraries are the Road to Take!

 

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Photo by Toa Heftiba on Unsplash

While wandering through the woods of information, would you blindly follow a path because one of the trees has a beautiful signpost that appeals to you, even though you have not read the content or verified the source? Of course not. You would stop to read all of the signs before following the path; your choice would be educated from reading all the signs and verifying the source, so you would not end up in darkness.  Going with your gut is another uneducated choice and leads you down a shadowed path. Only through careful research and studying can you find the facts you are looking for.  While there are many resources to assist with research, one easy-to-use one is the library and your librarians. National Library Week is a wonderful time to get to know your library and the resources it offers you. Continue reading

Happy Passover

Seder foods (Image courtesy of Wikimedia user Jonathunder)
Seder foods
(Image courtesy of Wikimedia user Jonathunder)

Passover is the one Holiday besides the New Year which is celebrated by a majority of all Jews from around the globe. The preparations for this Holiday very often drive people nuts.  The commandment is not to have any leavened product in your home during this 8 day period; this means that the house must be cleared of bread and all other such foodstuffs. And that’s on top of cleaning and cooking in preparation for the family gathering. Especially with small children in the household, it’s not hard to see why people get a little crazy at this time of year!   Continue reading

Staff Profile: Midtown Librarian Juliana Magro

Iguazu
The author in front of the Iguazu Falls in Brazil.

My name is Juliana Magro, and I am the Information Literacy and Instructional Librarian at the Midtown campus. I was born in Brazil, and moved to the United States a few years ago. I speak Portuguese and English, but I can also read Spanish and Italian.

 

 

In Brazil, I lived in Rio de Janeiro for 2 years to complete my masters in Linguistics. Rio is a beautiful (although quite chaotic) city. My favorite spot there is a park called Parque Lage. This park sits at the bottom of the Corcovado Mountain, and used to be the residence of industrialists in the 1920’s. It’s a good place to go to with a book for a nice cup of coffee, and then to take a stroll through a patch of forest. Continue reading

Introducing Cabells Scholarly Analytics

Shark
Navigate through the waves of predatory publishers with Cabells Scholarly Analytics!

We recently subscribed to a database called Cabells Scholarly Analytics. The library acquired it because there is a need for a resource that provides listings of legitimate academic journals and fraudulent journals all in one place. Now, let’s take a closer look at this database.  Continue reading

An Israel Travelogue

When temperatures hit the 30s °C (that’s 80s-90s °F), it’s time to leave my air-conditioned, windowless library located two floors underground in the Givat Shaul neighborhood of Jerusalem, and go touring.

This is how I found myself on an air-conditioned tour bus this past summer with former New Yorker and veteran tour guide Shalom Pollack, traveling through the southern Hevron hills, where the heat was in the low 40s °C (104-106 °F) in the shade!

Continue reading

The Olympic Games

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The author, skating.

Every four years, I am tickled with glee that the Winter Olympics have arrived. I have come to discover that people prefer either the Summer or the Winter Olympics. They can like both, of course, but they are usually more partial to one. I am definitely more partial to the Winter Olympics, which is surprising, since I hate the cold. But there is something about how winter sports make the dark, cold season cozy and celebratory that helps me make it to spring.

About 3 years ago, I took up speed skating as a way to lose weight. I learned that the activity burns 500 calories an hour. I figured if I am going to suffer through a workout, I might as well get the biggest bang for my buck. The first time I tried it, my legs felt like someone was taking a blowtorch to them. My feet were sore with blisters. And my nose was running like a faucet (ice skating makes your nose run – bring tissues). I realized this was going to be a slow buildup of my body adjusting to this new activity. I read over some books on athletic training to get an idea on how to proceed. The key was to take it slow and steady. I skated in 10 minute segments with 10 minutes of rest. Gradually, I worked up to 15 minute segments with 5 minutes of rest.  Eventually I got to the point where I am at today which is a solid 90 minutes of skating with a 5 minute rest in the middle. It is amazing how the human body adapts and alters.

The following eBooks are available on sports training at Touro College Library:

Sports Performance. Kanosue, Kazuyuki.

Nutrition and Enhanced Sports Performance : Muscle Building, Endurance, and Strength.  Bagchi, Debasis.

Strength and Conditioning for Sports Performance. Jeffreys, Ian.

But getting back to the Olympics. The Olympics has always been about more than just athletic stamina and grace. It is also an extravaganza of politics and national agendas mixing. The underlying current is about the nations of the world interacting, competing, and making statements about other nations. In a way, the Olympics is a political summit. And as the 2018 Winter Olympics wrapped up in Pyeongchang this week, we saw a thawing of tensions between North and South Korea as both nations decided to have their athletes march into the opening ceremonies under a united Korean flag. They also had a united hockey team. However, North and South Korea marched out of the games separately at the closing ceremonies leaving many to ponder the message. In addition to the drama surrounding Korea, Russian athletes had to compete under the Olympic flag due to doping scandals in their homeland. This opened a lot of discussion and controversy regarding the IOC (International Olympic Committee) engaging in favoritism and corruption. The political football of the Olympics is not new. It has been a tradition since the Olympics started.

The following eBooks are available on the politics of the Olympics:

Activism and the Olympics : dissent at the games in Vancouver and London Boykoff, Jules.

The Beijing Olympics : Soft and Hard Power in Global Politics. Caffrey, Kevin.

Designing the Olympics : Representation, Participation, Contestation. Traganou, Jilly.

As far as the 2020 Summer Olympics go, someone else will have to blog about them. I am too busy celebrating summer to watch.

Contributed by Annette Carr, Business Librarian, 65 Broadway.

The Celebration of Purim

Hamentashen, a traditional Purim sweet (CC image by Rebecca Slegel)
Hamantaschen, a traditional Purim sweet (CC image by Rebecca Slegel)

The observation of Purim begins the evening of February 28th through March 1st.

Purim is a holiday that represents a tangible victory over an enemy. Many things are done to commemorate this victory. The Book of Esther is read both on Wednesday night and Thursday morning. People go around in costume to show their happiness, a festive meal is eaten, and charity is given to help those who otherwise couldn’t celebrate this occasion. People give out packages of food to friends (usually in the form of a dessert) to celebrate camaraderie.

For more on the history and celebration of this holiday, see “Who is that masked man?” Happy Purim!

Contributed by: Edward Shabes, Library Assistant, Midtown

 

(Originally posted in 2016)

Using Images on Blogs and Social Media (or: Pictures on the Internet Aren’t Copyrighted, Right?)

So you’ve written a blog post (or want to make a Facebook, Twitter, or Instagram post). You’re proud of the writing, any external information you referenced is properly sourced, and you’re feeling good about posting it for all the world to see. But first, you want pictures to illustrate your excellent prose. Just go to Google, right? After all, if it’s on the internet, it’s free for all to use!

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Copyright symbol. Public domain image from user 3dman_eu onPixabay.

Well….nope. Most pictures you find on the Web are, in fact, under copyright! It doesn’t matter if they don’t have that little © somewhere on them – they are still copyrighted the moment they are created. What does that mean for you? It means that, without the copyright holder’s permission, you can’t just take something you found on one internet site and stick it into your blog post. This is a violation of copyright, and something that could potentially get you into legal trouble.

“What about fair use?”, you cry. “My blog post is educational!” That’s great, but it’s not quite enough. It’s possible that under the principles of fair use, you would be able to use copyrighted images. Take a look at each and weigh whether you think your use falls under these fair use guidelines from the U. S. Copyright Office:

  1. Purpose and character of the use, including whether the use is of a commercial nature or is for nonprofit educational purposes;
  2. Nature of the copyrighted work;
  3. Amount and substantiality of the portion used in relation to the copyrighted work as a whole;
  4. Effect of the use upon the potential market for or value of the copyrighted work.

Fair use is kind of vague, so just because you think your work falls under it doesn’t mean that the copyright holder does.

Man wagging his finger in disapproval
Image by Ahd Photography on Flickr. Licensed under CC BY-NC 2.0 (https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-nc/2.0/).

Say that you’ve determined your use of images in your blog post is not quite fair use, so you can’t actually put them in your blog post. What can you do? There are plenty of public domain (that means NOT under copyright) and Creative-Commons licensed images (that means you can use the image, without permission,  as long as you attribute the source and link to the license, and maybe a couple of other restrictions if you’re a commercial entity or want to make modifications) out there!

Man holding both hands in air on mountain
Imagine the freedom you’ll feel not worrying whether you’re violating copyright! (Photo by Dino Reichmuth on Unsplash)

Here are some websites that have these kinds of images:

You can also search by Usage Rights on the Advanced Search of Google Images.

There are so many places to get licensed and (truly) free images, there’s no need to pull copyrighted images off of random websites and possibly get yourself in trouble.

Just a note about this post: I am not a lawyer, and this is not legal advice.

References

U. S. Copyright Office (n. d.). Copyright in general. Retrieved from https://www.copyright.gov/help/faq/faq-general.html

U. S. Copyright Office (n. d.). More information on fair use. Retrieved from https://www.copyright.gov/fair-use/more-info.html

 

Contributed by Carrie Levinson, Scholarly Communications Librarian, Midtown