3.00 FYI France: Ejournal and archive

by Jack Kessler, kessler@well.sf.ca.us

January 15, 2002 issue. This file presents an archive copy of the issue of the FYI France ejournal, ISSN 1071-5916, which was distributed via email on January 15, 2002.

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Versions of the following have appeared online regularly, since 1992, as a feature of the FYI France ejournal, ISSN 1071-5916, which is distributed for free via email every month except August. Ejournal subscriptions may be obtained via email request to: kessler@well.sf.ca.us

Here this file is one of a number made available -- hopefully attractively, all in one place, and relevant to libraries and online digital information work in France and Europe -- as part of FYI France (sm)(tm), an online service to which anyone can subscribe for 12 months by postal mailing a check for US $45, payable to Jack Kessler, to PO Box 460668, San Francisco, California, USA 94146 (site licenses also are available): please write your email address on the front of your check. Please email suggestions for improvements to me at kessler@well.sf.ca.us


FYI France: new books,
on the Internet & libraries in France


Several interesting new books are out, about the Internet and libraries in France:

1) The Internet, in France --

* Internet, communication et langue française / Jacques Anis, ed. (Hermès science publications, 1999) ISBN : 2746200635.

-- France is not the only country in the world which has a "language policy". The others don't talk about it as much. But a lot of potential users / customers / clients out there do not and never will speak English -- "language policies" can be de facto as well as de jure. Understanding the French, who at least are frank about these things, offers a good and easy and perhaps necessary prelude to understanding the others as well.

* La France dans la société de l'information (La Documentation Française, 1999) ISBN : 2110041927.

-- The Internet as Official Government Policy... The USA is nearly the only country in the world which doesn't have one. As with language, it is valuable to consider how other folks Out There are tackling questions of governmental involvement and non - involvement in all of this, perhaps beginning with the French.

* Histoire mondiale de l'espionnage : T2 De la guerre froide à l'ère internet / Claude Moniquet, Genovefa Etienne (Editions Du Felin, 2001) ISBN : 2866453948.

-- An interesting angle: ever wonder how the spy - fans in France are viewing the Internet now? The US and UK views certainly seem to be up in the air, particularly post - "9/11". Packet switching started out as a military "spread the risk" investment venture, after all, and perhaps things are coming full circle now. Interesting to consider how this is being viewed in a nation famous for its centralization tendencies.

* Une architecture Internet pour le système d'information de France Telecom / Jean - Luc Lucas (Eyrolles, 2001) ISBN : 2212110030

-- Ever wondered how huge information systems overseas do the "Internet upgrade"? Different problems, perhaps, from those faced in the US, or anywhere else where the English - language medium is an easier one to master. How would they do this in China, I wonder? How would they do it in Indonesia? Most places have enormous and state - run telecom monopolies, far more similar to a France Telecom than to any Baby Bell...

* L'Internet (Direction des journaux officiels, 2001) Les éditions des journaux officiels no 31724, Collection "La loi au quotidien".

-- the lawyers... as much in the dark about all of this, although they don't admit it, as are the rest of us...

* Le droit d'auteur et l'Internet : rapport du groupe de travail de l'Académie des sciences morales et politiques / Académie des sciences morales et politiques ; présidé par Gabriel de Broglie (Presses universitaires de France, 2001) Series title: Cahier des sciences morales et politiques.

-- the lawyers (bis), plus the several following --

* Droit sur internet / C. Lobry, M. Letrat (Top Eds, 2001) ISBN : 2877311821.

* Du droit et des libertés sur Internet : Rapport au Premier ministre (Documentation Française, 2001) ISBN : 2110047291.

-- important stuff, in this post - 9/11 year of the CIPA / Children's Internet Protection Act, which "protects" so much more than just the children (the case is "American Library Association vs. The United States", going to trial March 25 -- see,


and more below), and our dawning "Era of Apparently - Limitless War" -- by Terrorists against Others, by Others against Terrorists...

* Internet pour le droit : Connexion, recherche, droit / Serge Guinchard, Michèle Harichaux, Renaud de Tourdonnet (Montchrestien, 2001) ISBN : 2707612316.

* Internet : le droit du cybercommerce, Le guide pratique et juridique 2001 / Francis Baillet (Groupe Stratégies, 2000) ISBN : 2904060766.

* Internet et le droit / Aloysius Bertrand, Thierry Piette - Coudol (Presses universitaires de France, Que Sais - Je numéro 3504, 2000) ISBN : 2130511287.

* Droit de la communication, presse, audiovisuel, Internet / Charles Debbasch (Dalloz, 2000) ISBN : 2247041140.

* Guide 2000 de l'Internet en France (Marabout / Poche, 1999) ISBN : 2501032330.

-- "How To Do It", the latest...

* Hackers et Pirates sur Internet / Damien Bancal (Desmaret, 2001) ISBN : 2913675093.

-- The Scandales, the latest...

* De l'imprimé à Internet / Marie - France Lebert (00h00, 2000) ISBN : 2745401920

-- "How does the world of the print media accept this tremendous means of communication which is the Internet? How does the Internet take into account the various sectors of the print media?" -- from this excellent epublisher's website, at



* Propagande au Royaume - Uni : De la Renaissance è Internet / Xavier Cervantes (Ellipses, 2002) ISBN : 2729810366.

-- irresistible title. Not strictly "France", but perhaps a French view -- although by an author named "Cervantes"? -- of l'Albion perfide, from Elizabeth's ministers to Tony Blair and his...

* L'internet : un vrai défi pour la France ; rapport au Premier Ministre / Patrice Martin - Lalande (La Documentation Française, 1998) Collection des rapports officiels, ISBN : 2110039272.

-- anyone remember J-J Servan - Schreiber?

* La galaxie Internet / Manuel Castells (Fayard, 2002) ISBN : 2213610576.

-- "must" reading, for anyone French, in things "digital" and "Internet". Castells -- at one time of Nanterre and the generation of '68, and now of Berkeley and the generation of 2002 there -- has written the most popular bible among those who would wish to understand the Internet in its broadest generality: his 3 volume work, The Information Age. The current piece from Fayard is a translation of Castells' recent Clarendon Lectures at Oxford, published in English as The Internet Galaxy : Reflections on the Internet, Business, and Society (Oxford, 2001) ISBN: 0199241538. Compared to the opus magnum the lectures are mercifully smaller and more simply presented -- in the latter he has lightened up on the impenetrable prose which so cripples the former. If you are looking for a simple one - volume explanation of the cosmic significance of the New Information Society, for a generalist reader more comfortable in French than in English, this is it.

* Internet et multimédia appliqués aux collectivités territoriales / Francis Aynaud (Ed. de La Lettre du Cadre Territorial, 2000) Dossiers d'experts, ISBN : 284130275X.

* Internet à l'école en France / Jean - Louis Durpaire (Centre Régional de Documentation Pédagogique CRDP Poitiers, 2000) ISBN : 2866324595.

* Histoire des médias : De Diderot à Internet Edition 2000 / Frédéric Barbier, Catherine Bertho - Lavenir (Armand Colin, 2000) ISBN : 2200252269.

-- at last, the Thing -- the Internet -- is beginning to have a "history"... also,

* Internet et le métier d'historien : Réflexions sur les incertitudes d'une mutation / Rolando Minuti (Presses universitaires de France, 2002) ISBN : 2130516033.


2) And some interesting new books on Libraries, in France --

* La bibliothèque nationale de France / Daniel Renoult (Cercle de la Librairie, 2001) Bibliothèques, ISBN : 2765408203.

* Conduire une politique documentaire / Bertrand Calenge (Cercle de la Librairie, 1999) Bibliothèques, ISBN : 2765407177.

* Les bibliothèques municipales et leurs publics / Anne-Marie Bertrand, Martine Burgos, Claude Poissenot (BPI Bibliothèque publique d'information, Centre Georges Pompidou, 2001) Pratiques ordinaires de la culture.

* Les villes et leurs bibliothèques / Anne - Marie Bertrand (Cercle de la Librairie, 1999) Bibliothèques, ISBN : 2765407452.

* Stratégie marketing des services d'information / Florence Muet, Jean - Michel Salaün (Electre - Cercle De La Librairie, 2001) Bibliothèques et centres de documentation.

* Le contrôle de l'état sur le patrimoine des bibliothèques : aspects législatifs et réglementaires, essai de présentation critique / Jean - Luc Gautier - Gentès, Denis Pallier (ENSSIB, 1999) Les dossiers juridiques de l'ENSSIB, ISBN : 291022726X.

-- Important issues, as suggested above, at a time when Freedom of Expression appears to be under attack throughout the globe, both among critics of The West, and within The West itself: in the US, with its new CIPA Children's Internet Protection Act, which censors far more than just the children -- the case is "American Library Association vs. The United States", going to trial March 25, see,


-- and in France, in a couple of little towns down in the far south, in their mairies and their local libraries... see,



* Littérature contemporaine en bibliothèque / Martine Poulain (Cercle de la Librairie, 2001) Bibliothèques, ISBN : 2765407983.

* Littérature(s) en bibliothèques / Marie Dinclaux, Jean - Pierre Vosgin (Presses Universitaires Bordeaux, 2001) Lecteurs Bibliothèques usages Nouveaux numéro 6, ISBN 2911185056.

* Le management du personnel en bibliothèques / J. Muller (Electre, Cercle De La Librairie, 2001)

* Les Adolescents et la bibliothèque / Claude Poissenot (BPI Bibliothèque publique d'information, Centre Georges Pompidou, 2000) Etudes et recherche, ISBN : 2842460227.

* Cinq siècles de lecture populaire / Noë Richter (Société d'histoire de la lecture, 2000) 2d ed., Matériaux pour une histoire de la lecture et de ses institutions, ISBN : 2912626080.

* Les médiateurs du livre : prêtres et pasteurs, instituteurs, professionnels et militants / Noë Richter (Société d'histoire de la lecture, 1999) Matériaux pour une histoire de la lecture et de ses institutions, ISBN : 2912626056.

* Le droit d'auteur et les bibliothèques (Electre - Cercle De La Librairie, 2000) ISBN : 2765407851.

-- those lawyers, again...

* Présentation des publications, traitement documentaire et gestion de bibliothèques / Association française de normalisation (AFNOR, 2000) 5th ed., Documentation, ISBN : 2122344512.

-- standards -- perhaps the best response which the professions might make to a world come slightly unhinged or at least changing fast...




And a general note, about all of this:

One of the dramatic developments of the turn of the millenium, in US library collections, has been the funding falloff in "foreign" journal subscriptions and acquisitions: fell off a cliff, I'd say, judging from personal experience with current availabilities in a number of major US institutions. I have done no statistical study to prove this -- I am not sure that one could be done -- my observation is impressionistic only. But it does seem to me that in the US, now, there is vastly decreased interest in "foreign" languages or histories or attitudes or approaches to things.

If printed book libraries offer any indication, well, entire sections of collections once actively prowled by undergraduates now have been moved to neglected shelving areas off the beaten track -- sections, that is, which so far have avoided the ultimate ignobility of consignment to off - campus surplus shelving where they never would be read again. As for foreign journal subscriptions, just try to find them. The truest test of usage in a busy library being the inverse shelving disorder rule -- the tidiest shelves hold the least - used books -- "European Studies" and other such areas nowadays appear to be the tidiest.

And if digital usage is the indicator, well then, someone please do the numbers on "US" Websites and other digital media versus "non-US" -- even on their "relative growth rates", as opposed to their "current usage". I remember Japanese GNP growing at 10+% per annum while that of the US grew at far less, back in the 1950s, and yes the Japanese did nearly catch us -- just as the Chinese, at their current 8+% per annum GDP, may catch us now. But the current head start which the US enjoys in digital media usage is enormous: even at geometric projection rates for economic growth, the US lead in this area puts it far in front of the rest of the world combined.

Current conventional wisdom suggests that all this is as it should be, that "supply and demand" are dictating this "meilleure des mondes possibles" -- that US college students simply no longer are interested in "European Studies", for example, and even that they need not be, now, as there are so many other areas of study more "relevant" to the modern situation available on the current campus, self - centered "multiculturalism" so often substituting for the real thing -- or that students live now in a world which requires engineering and the hard sciences more than it does the humanities and the other "soft stuff", perhaps.

Perhaps the modern "supply and demand / best of all possible worlds" can do without the messy subjects, and controversies, and heartaches, of worlds which preceded it -- The Formula has been found, maybe, and it just is a matter of time before the entire globe conforms to the One Accepted Formula...

But ignorance cuts both ways, in this. Just as some feel it is too bad that so many people around the globe do not yet benefit from the wonders and riches of the Internet and of Western Civilization -- they will if they work hard, they are told, and many of them are working very hard in those directions -- it also is a problem that many in The West, who increasingly are online all day now on computers and flip - phones and televisions and various other media, are losing touch with and understanding of the Disconnected World.

So when the bombs drop, and the planes hit, and the military diseases surface, the most stunned among us are the richest and the most sophisticated: the world's poor know from whence these problems come -- in the words of Turkey's Orhan Pamuk, the Poor and the Disconnected know "The Anger of the Damned" (New York Review of Books, November 15, 2001).

We all need to stay Connected -- those of us who think we have The Formula to those of us whom we think do not, just as they need to stay in touch with us -- this keeps the surprises from being as surprising as they were late last year. A beginning would be made, at least, if those of us in The West were to stay a bit better in touch with each other: the fundamental mindset among Westerners is not so different -- minor cultural differences, such as those of language, are more easily overcome among us -- and talking with our friends is good preparation for the more complex and arduous task of talking with our foes.

So that is the spirit in which the references above are offered here. It is the spirit in which this entire FYI France effort has been undertaken since its 1992 beginnings. It is not so much the French who are the object of the attention in FYI France, or the Americans, or anyone else in particular -- it is the process of communication, between one culture and another, which is so important in a rapidly globalizing world, in which cultural differences are taken for granted only to the severe peril of all concerned. This is a process which cannot be enhanced if we no longer teach our children about those differences, and if we no longer stock and read the "foreign" materials on our bookshelves.




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Last update: January 15, 2002