UBC Library stands behind Dale Askey and McMaster University in advocating intellectual freedom and the pursuit of knowledge as core values essential to academic research libraries.

In line with the statements of the Canadian Association of Research Libraries, the Canadian Library Association, the Association of Research Libraries and other libraries and library associations, we believe that librarians should be able to express their academic freedom and opinions, and that this freedom be protected and upheld without the fear of intimidation. In a competitive and fluid vendor market, libraries make acquisition decisions that they deem to be the most valuable for their user community. This is the heart of librarianship – our role of evaluating and mediating the connection between the user and the resources at their disposal.

For this reason, we join others in asking Edwin Mellen Press to cease its legal action against Mr. Askey.

Read more:

Canadian Association of Research Libraries and the Association of Research Libraries statement

Canadian Library Association statement

Council of Prairie and Pacific University Libraries statement

British Columbia Library Association statement

Webcast sponsored by the Irving K. Barber Learning Centre and hosted by the School of Library, Archival, and Information Studies (SLAIS). As social creatures, our online lives just like our offline lives are intertwined with others within a wide variety of social networks. Each retweet on Twitter, comment on a blog or link to a Youtube video explicitly or implicitly connects one online participant to another and contributes to the formation of various information and social networks. Once discovered, these networks can provide researchers with an effective mechanism for identifying and studying collaborative processes within any online community. However, collecting information about online networks using traditional methods such as surveys can be very time consuming and expensive. The presentation will explore automated ways to discover and analyze various information and social networks from social media data.


Anatoliy Gruzd is Assistant Professor in the School of Information Management and Director of the Social Media Lab at Dalhousie University. His research initiatives explore how social media and other web 2.0 technologies are changing the ways in which people disseminate knowledge and information and how these changes are impacting social, economic and political norms and structures of our modern society. Dr. Gruzd is also actively developing and testing new web tools and apps for discovering and visualizing information and online social networks. The broad aim of his various research initiatives is to provide decision makers with additional knowledge and insights into the behaviors and relationships of online network members, and to understand how these interpersonal connections influence our personal choices and actions.

Select Articles Available at UBC Library

Gruzd, A., Staves, K., Wilk, A. (2012). Connected Scholars: Examining the Role of Social Media in Research Practices of Faculty using the UTAUT model.Computers in Human Behavior 28 (6), 2340-2350. Link:

Gruzd, A., and Sedo, D.R. (2012) #1b1t: Investigating Reading Practices at the Turn of the Twenty-first Century. Journal of Studies in Book Culture, Special issue on New Studies in the History of Reading 3(2). Link:

Takhteyev, Y., Gruzd, A., and Wellman, B. (2012). Geography of Twitter Networks. Social Networks, Special issue on Space and Networks, 34(1): 73-81. Link: 

UBC Library Research Guides

Library, Archival, and Information Science

Marketing is a non-profit organization committed to growing computer programming education. The founders (Hadi and Ali Partovi) published an article in today’s Huff Post Education that argued that one of the ways to fix the (American) economy is to teach students how to code. What do you think?

In April 1953, eleven-year old Brian McLaughlin wrote to psychiatrist Fredric Wertham in response to the latter’s article in Reader’s Digest, “Comic Books – Blueprints for Delinquency.” The boy asserted confidently: “Anybody that goes out and kills someone because he read a comic book is a simple minded idiot. Sound silly? So does your item.” McLaughlin was not the only young person to critique Wertham’s argument about comics: dozens more wrote him in 1953 and 1954.

In the late 1940s and culminating in 1954 with the publication of Wertham’s book Seduction of the Innocent and the televised hearings on comics held by a United States subcommittee, comic books were the most contested form of print. Young readers could not get enough of them, purchasing more than a billion new comic books issues a year in the early 1950s. Adult critics such as Wertham feared, that by reading these four-color pamphlets full of stories of superheroes, cowboys, and jungle queens, young people would stunt their cultural development, ruin their eyesight, and fall into lives of depravity.

This presentation draws in part from Wertham’s manuscript collection at the Library of Congress and the archival record of the 1954 Senate hearings to document and analyze some of the ways young readers challenged and protested adults’ understanding of comic book reading. Carol Tilley, Assistant Professor at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign, did not expect to find letters from young comics readers when she explored these collections. The discovery of these narratives has prompted me to extend this investigation into locating more descriptions of children’s reading experiences – many of which are unfiltered and unmediated by adults—that can serve as potent evidence to enrich scholarship in children’s print culture.”


Carol L. Tilley is an Assistant Professor in the Graduate School of Library and Information Science at the University of Illinois Urbana-Champaign, where she teaches courses in comics’ reader’s advisory, media literacy, and youth services librarianship. Part of her scholarship focuses on the intersection of young people, comics, and libraries, particularly in the United States during the mid-twentieth century. Her research has been published in journals including the Journal of the American Society for Information Science and Technology (JASIST)Information & Culture: A Journal of History, and Children’s Literature in Education. A former high school librarian, she is also co-editor of School Library Research, the peer-reviewed online journal of the American Association of School Librarians.

Select Articles Available at UBC Library

Peoples, B. & Tilley, C. (2011). Podcasts as an Emerging Information Resource. College & Undergraduate Libraries, 18:1, 44-57. Link:

Tilley, C. (2012). Seducing the Innocent: Fredric Wertham and the Falsifications That Helped Condemn Comics. Information & Culture: A Journal of History, Volume 47, Number 4, 2012, 383-413. Link:

UBC Library Research Guides:

Library, Archival, and Information Science


Arts and Artists in Children’s Books Bibliography

a place of mind, The University of British Columbia

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