[Libs-Or] LIBS-OR User Guidelines

Jennifer Patterson Jennifer.L.Patterson at state.or.us
Thu Nov 14 08:51:40 PST 2019

Thank you for all of the thoughtful posts about this important topic. The State Library developed revised user guidelines for the LIBS-OR list in February 2019, and the recent complaint we received was the first complaint about a post since these guidelines were implemented. This was the first opportunity to handle a complaint under the new user guidelines. LIBS-OR moderators worked with State Library management to formulate a response, yet this example has revealed that there are some improvements that can be made to ensure that the guidelines and our process for handling complaints are responsive and inclusive. If you are interested in working with us to review the guidelines and develop a process for handling complaints, please contact Arlene Weible at arlene.weible at state.or.us. Thank you for working with us make sure that LIBS-OR continues to be a space for expressing diverse opinions and ideas within the library community.


Jennifer Patterson
State Librarian
jennifer.l.patterson at state.or.us<mailto:jennifer.l.patterson at state.or.us>
503-378-4367 | www.oregon.gov/library
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[Title: State Library of Oregon]

From: Libs-Or [mailto:libs-or-bounces at listsmart.osl.state.or.us] On Behalf Of Meredith Farkas
Sent: Wednesday, November 13, 2019 3:11 PM
To: Diedre Conkling <diedre08 at gmail.com>
Cc: libs-or <libs-or at listsmart.osl.state.or.us>
Subject: Re: [Libs-Or] Editorial Response to OLAQ 25(2)

Thanks for your post, Diedre. I did not receive any warning for my comments and I agree with your suggestion that whoever reported Max was made uncomfortable by his criticism. It effectively supported his point that "BIPOC are constantly told how they should speak, behave, think and believe by white people."

I have also had experiences where the words of a person of color made me uncomfortable and that often happened because it forced me to think about my own complicity in upholding white supremacy. If we don't face that discomfort, if we avoid discomfort or try to silence those who cause us discomfort, we can't find ways to decrease harm.

Thanks everyone who has participated in this important discussion.


On Wed, Nov 13, 2019 at 2:07 PM Diedre Conkling <diedre08 at gmail.com<mailto:diedre08 at gmail.com>> wrote:
Oops, that should have read person of color (not on).

I am wondering if anyone else, other than Max, participating in this discussion has received a warning about inappropriate postings to libs-or.

On Wed, Nov 13, 2019 at 1:54 PM Diedre Conkling <diedre08 at gmail.com<mailto:diedre08 at gmail.com>> wrote:
I am so glad that Max posted about this article.  It has led to some very good discussion on this list and elsewhere.  It is too bad that the discussion had to be started by a person on color.

It is also too bad that someone complained to the State Library saying that his post was inappropriate and unprofessional. He has been warned by the State Library.  I read his post and said to myself that this post is going to make some very uncomfortable.  Being uncomfortable with a post doesn’t make it inappropriate or unprofessional.

I have read the libs-or guidelines along side Max’s original post and don’t believe it went against the guidelines.  It was a valid criticism. As librarians we should be willing to look deeper into issues that make us uncomfortable.  I think that in this case the discomfort really points out the white privilege many of us have.

Again, I’m so very happy that Max was willing to take this on even though he knew there would be backlash from some.  Thank you State Library for sponsoring a discussion list that allows us to really discuss these important issues.

Diedre Conkling
diedre08 at gmail.com<mailto:diedre08 at gmail.com>

“If you don't like something, change it. If you can't change it, change your attitude.”―Maya Angelou
Diedre Conkling
diedre08 at gmail.com<mailto:diedre08 at gmail.com>

“If you don't like something, change it. If you can't change it, change your attitude.”―Maya Angelou
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