Monday April 24th 2017




‘SALALM Speaks’ Archives


Greetings to the blog reading SALALMeros out there.

The final program for SALALM 54 is now available on the conference website. It’s hard to believe the rough notes and lists I sketched out with Peter and Ricarda over cold lemonade in New Orleans has turned into this 32 page document. Now I need to clone myself so I can sit in on all the panels.

Hope to see some of you soon; others can look forward to our ongoing posts and eventual conference reports.


e-SALALM — Your input needed

Hi all,
This is my first entry into the salalm blogosphere– and how appropriate that I am writing about SALALM’s digital future! I have posted a note to LALA-L describing my idea to form an ad hoc group within SALALM to explore ways to make our organization more electronic. Hopefully saving us some work and time and paper. I am pasting in the proposal below.

I invite you to send your feedback, either directly to my Columbia email ( OR you can use the comments feature of this blog to share your thoughts. We will dedicate some time to this issue in the Town Hall meeting at the end of the SALALM conference, on the afternoon of July 8th. If you post or send a comment, I can bring that to the discussion, if you wish. I’ll look forward to receiving your thoughts, in person or in bytes. Thanks! Pamela

Proposal and Charge for the e-SALALM Ad hoc Committee
July 2009
Submitted by Pamela Graham, SALALM President 2008-09

This proposal seeks to set up an Ad hoc committee (to be called the e-SALALM Group) to investigate, research, and recommend measures that could be taken to improve and increase efficiency in several SALALM functions via the use of technology. Over the course of the last few years, the membership and SALALM officers have expressed an interest in moving several key functions online and this theme surfaced in the 2007 PRI Survey. Shifting some of SALALM’s functions online will involve initial and ongoing costs, and will require an examination of available software and tools, and a consideration of several non-technological issues. I propose setting up a working group that can survey and review such options and issues with the goal of providing the Executive Board, the Finance Committee, and other relevant Committees with specific recommendations for pursuing any appropriate changes.

Possible categories of functions and activities to be reviewed: 

  • Routine SALALM functions: Initial memberships and membership renewals, Conference Registration, SALALM election balloting 
  • Publications: Newsletter, Membership Directory, Proceedings and other publications
  • Publicity and Outreach: use of blogs, Facebook, podcasts, and other social networking tools to disseminate information and engage existing and potential members 
  • Intra-SALALM communication: Group workspaces for committees/subcommittees; tools for sharing documents, minutes, and any project documentation etc.

Possible tasks for the e-SALALM can include the following: 

  • Consult with relevant SALALM committees and with the membership as needed to gather information about priorities, questions, and concerns; determine whether some functions are already carried out online and recommend any needed practices or guidelines 
  • Review other similar professional organizations’ websites; consult with colleagues to obtain advice and suggestions on software and appropriate technologies 
  • Review possible tools and software; obtain information about technological requirements and costs 
  • Consider non-technological issues including access, privacy, and the possible need for any changes in SALALM’s Basic Documents 
  • Consider needs for any new institutional support, financial and human, to enact and sustain possible changes

Membership: The group will consist of a Chair and approximately 5 members. The group should include a mixture of persons with technological skills and experience, and those with strong familiarity with SALALM’s committees and functions. The committee will be populated by a combination of appointments and an open call for volunteers from the membership to serve.

Timeline for work: The group will carry out most of its work during the 2009-10 academic year. A brief status report should be sent to the Executive Board in January 2010. The group will deliver a report and recommendations to the Executive Board and Finance Committee two weeks before the SALALM LV conference so that these recommendations can be considered at the annual Executive Board and Finance Committee meetings. More complicated issues may require additional time for research and investigation so some of the e-SALALM group may carry over into the following year.

Yelp in Berlin?

You are probably already familiar with the restaurant (and almost everything else) review site – Yelp ( It’s my go-to site for dining decisions. Sadly, it appears that there is no Yelp Berlin, yet. However, you can find great restaurant reviews for Berlin on a number of sites:

Happy eating!

Berlin Conference Draft Program Available

Check out this sneak peek of the draft conference program for SALALM 2009 in Berlin. There are so many great-sounding panels!

We are still looking for a few more volunteer rapporteurs. If you’re able to assist, contact Roberto Delgadillo, UC Davis, for more information.

SALALM Members at the 2009 Buenos Aires Book Fair (April 20-May 11, 2009)

This year saw a small but active group of SALALMistas at the 35th International Buenos Aires Book Fair. Teresa Chapa (University of North Carolina) and Adan Griego (Stanford) retraced their adventure to Libreria Asunto Impreso. Unlike last year, Adan was not climbing up ladders or fighting with fellow SALALMistas for copies of books, as was the case at the Belleza y Felicidad Gallery a few years ago during a visit to the Eloisa Cartonera book project. He did ask to un-wrap a few art books he bought for his own collection at home. Not sure why ALL the books were wrapped.

After some “comida casera” in the neighborhood, the adventurous librarians headed to Papelera Palermo in search of some artist books, but the fine arts press side of the bookstore is no longer in operation. So a visit to La Boutique del Libro bookshop was a welcome stop to end the afternoon. The bookstore’s founder had just been honored the night before as the “librero del año” by Book Fair organizers.

Angela Carreño (New York University) visited the collective stand of academic presses and probably by the time she got to the combined stand for cultural journals there were some gaps since Teresa Chapa had already acquired complete sets of several titles. Gata FloraNomadaOtra ParteOjos CruelesTodo es HistoriaLas Ranas,
TDI: Teatro Diseño Inovación, and Planeta Urbano stood out among those on display.

Not all were book adventures, some were almost out of a Larra text: Phill Macleod (Emory) experienced a “vuelva usted mañana” moment at the American Express office in his attempt to secure funds and be able to purchase materials at the Fair. But the next day he was eagerly acquiring books for his library….after he spoke to the manager, perhaps?

SALALM vendors were present as well. Alfonso Vijil was seen hauling a large suitcase full of books.Luis Retta and Marcelo Garcia Cambeiro were spotted having a coffee…perhaps discussing upcoming budget cuts from their US customers while Alvaro Risso stood guard at the Camara del Libro de Uruguay stand. Nicolas and Anna RossiDanilo AlveroLinda Russo and Carlos Castellanosexplored the many stands to catch any “novedades” being launched at the Fair this year.

Also in attendance were several Reforma colleagues from public libraries in San Antonio, San Francisco, Oakland, District of Columbia, Redwood City (CA), Chicago, Los Angeles and Brooklyn. The visits were made possible with support from the Fundación el Libro, and the Fundación Exportar.

There were many other panels scheduled to coincide with the Fair. By accident I walked into a “mesa redonda” on the Google Book Search Project, a similar discussion the previous year had a SRO audience but this time it was less than ½ full. Perhaps some of the same points had already been addressed in the past few days at 3rd Meeting of Latin American Book Dealers. Nonetheless, it proved to be quite a lively discussion. One of the speakers (from a regional academic press) had given all its content to Google with no consultation from the authors. A legal scholar from the University of Buenos Aires in the audience argued that such action was a clear violation of intellectual property laws. Meanwhile, the panelist from Google re-iterated (more than once) that the content resided in a very secure Google server not on the Web for all the see/read/download.

The previous day this same room had experienced an overflow crowd that would have violated many a building fire code as eager attendees to Argentina’s Library Association Conference (ABGRA) had come to listen to presentations entitled: Servicios,Tecnología y Acceso a la Información . The topics covered locally developed innovative ways of providing services (book renewals via a cell phone) and one on Information Architecture by a young and dynamic presenter sponsored by the US Embassy in Argentina, the type of cultural diplomacy our country needs to continue supporting.

As in previous years, librarians from the United States participated in the ABGRA Conference. Fellow Reformista Alvaro Sanabria (San Francisco Public Library) talked about how the SFPL system has developed its Spanish library collections and the multiple services it provides to users.

This time I presented to a group of school librarians: “El usuario que viene: un acercamiento a ésta nueva generación digital.” The talk was well received and I am sure other talented SALAMISTAS can contribute presentations to future ABGRA meetings as Paloma Celis Carbajal (University of Wisconsin), Anne Barnhart (UC Santa Barbara), and Patricia Figueroa (Brown) did last year or as Carlos Delgado (UC Berkeley) did for several years. ¡ANIMENSE!, el mundo es ancho, y no tan ajeno!`

Welcome to the SALALM blog!

Thanks to the brilliant idea of the SALALM Membership Committee, we’ve created this blog. Hopefully, you can use the SALALM blog to keep up to date on news related to Latin American librarianship and SALALM goings-on. In particular, we’re looking for a few folks to blog Berlin – post updates on the SALALM 2009 conference for all of us unable to attend.

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