Talk:Young Adult Library Services Association

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Controversy (former section)[edit]

Evidently this is the former section of the article which generated the following discussion. I have moved it up here from its location between the two subsections (as I have fashioned them). --P64 (talk) 20:38, 14 January 2012 (UTC)

In 2005, the president of YALSA called a certain book "not the most literary," but in 2006 created a new list of ALA-recommended books that where exactly like the book criticized in 2005. "Pam Spencer Holley of the [YALSA said] ... [s]he's happy to see teen girls reading. Eventually, girls who are reading Gossip Girls will move on to better books, she says. 'Unless you read stuff that's perhaps not the most literary, you'll never understand what good works are,' says Holley. .... Besides, she says, what's the worst thing that can happen? 'Nobody complains about the adult women who read Harlequin romances.'" [1] Less than a year later, "[YALSA] ... has announced a list of books to recommend to teens, both avid and reluctant readers, who are looking for books like Cecily von Ziegesar's 'Gossip Girl' series. 'The books on this list are perfect for when your readers have finished with every 'Gossip Girl' title in your library and are clamoring for another book like the Gossip Girl,' said YALSA President Pam Spencer Holley." [2]


I removed the controversy secion. It is unclear from this addition what is controversial about this position. If there is a controversy about YALSA, please explain it and cite it. Otherwise this is just basically saying that YALSA chooses books that are popular as well as literary which isn't really controversial. Jessamyn (talk) 21:33, 24 April 2007 (UTC)

Okay, Jessamyn. Some of the controversy is implicit in the article "Racy Reading...." Why else would the reporter report the way she did. Some of the controversy is implicit in YALSA recommending books that the year before were substandard.
Now I say implicit because it is there, implicitly, in the Racy Reading article, but the main stream media in general has made no mention of a controversy (that I can find) about the ALA recommending racy reading for children that's substandard and besides, YALSA tells us, adults read Harlequin novels anyway, so what's the big diff. This is part of the problem with relying on the MSM. If the MSM doesn't print it, it doesn't exist. If the MSM does print it, it must be true. So other that the implicit controversy in Racy Reading, I have found no other MSM evidence of a controversy.
Of course I think the thing speaks for itself - a list of Harlequin noel recommendations for children based on admitted substandard books. But your point is, and I agree, we need wiki-solid proof. And if the implicit proof combined with the obviousness of the matter does not cut it in the wiki world, then you are correct. And as this issue is last year, the MSM discussing this is minimal now. Anyone what to respond? --LegitimateAndEvenCompelling 01:11, 25 April 2007 (UTC)
More to the point, the word racy doesn't imply a controversy except for those who feel that raciness and YA books are somehow totally antithetical to one another. That is, there's an implicit conclusion being drawn that is POV. For something to be controversial it really needs to be noted as a controversy in the media somewhere. YALSA rarely gets such media mention, but if you see any current-ish mentions, please feel free to bring them back here. Jessamyn (talk) 03:40, 25 April 2007 (UTC)

external links[edit]

Please do not add links that are just to news articles about the subject of the Wikipedia article. External links serve a very direct and narrow purpose and are not just for indicating an article where a group member was quoted. is the external links guideline. Jessamyn (talk) 13:51, 11 September 2007 (UTC)

You minimize the article. It contains in a nutshell the very essence of YALSA as stated by its then President, not a mere "group member." And it was not just where someone was quoted.
Jessamyn, this has nothing to do with my soapbox you continue to claim I'm on. You think I added this article for some soapbox reason. No. The article is added precisely because it is about YALSA's president summarizing YALSA's beliefs. Since this is the YALSA page, the YALSA president stating the YALSA beliefs in a main stream media article is perfect for this page.
Further, leave out the article and the page looks like it was written by YALSA itself.
Lastly, the IP address that first removed it maps to the ALA's home town. So if it is to be discussed, it stays in until a decision is reached, If not, we just rewarded an ALA member editing an ALA page, and that is not wiki policy compliant. --LegitimateAndEvenCompelling 02:49, 12 September 2007 (UTC)
My goodness, look at the history page. This page was created and is maintained by ALA members, other than myself--oh, I might be an ALA member too! --LegitimateAndEvenCompelling 02:55, 12 September 2007 (UTC)
You may not understand what the external links section is supposed to be about. Please refer to the guideline I referred you to. Jessamyn (talk) 04:20, 12 September 2007 (UTC)
Jessamyn. You are fishing. I read that links guide and the link fits. You specify why it does not -- you raised the guide -- you specify.
Further, you are not acting in good faith. The link stays in until consensus is reached why it comes out. There is no hurry to take it out. As I explained why above, the link stays in. And let me add one more thing. YALSA now produces a Top 10 list of books like the Gossip Girls, and the reasoning for that is directly related to the interview of the YALSA president. I am adding back in the link and it is to stay in until consensus takes it out. Your taking it out will be considered bad faith by me under the given circumstances which, if you were not wearing your ALA glasses, you would see clearly. --LegitimateAndEvenCompelling 04:31, 12 September 2007 (UTC)
Hello all. Just reviewing the options here, the source is definitely relevant to the article as it is specific to young adults, and the ALA, the umbrella organization of the subject in question. All articles are to include criticism and controversy wherever it is relevant and its definitely relevant in this case. The questions is whether to have it as a link, or to include it with more specific criticism within the main text of the article. For now, I am open to either. Lingorama 08:46, 12 September 2007 (UTC)
Honestly, I believe the link does not contain any criticism or controversy at all, or at least I don't recall any right now. I believe the link is merely a well written article in a MSM source containing a significant in size conversation with the president of subject of this page. Further, the article is particularly important in light of the creation of a Top 10 list of books just like the ones discussed in the article in the presiden't own words.
Honestly, the thought that I added the article just to be critical of the ALA is based solely on someone's personal view that I added it here to besmirch the organization. The article does not do that. It is curious that she believes it does.
Honestly, look at this wiki page. It is written by and for the ALA and its members. The one article I added is merely an external link -- I have added no words myself. I happen to agree with you that the topic could be expanded in the article, but precisely to avoid adding POV I did not do that. Yet that one article has in the past few days been removed by ALA members, sometimes using the false cover of claiming it is my soapbox. I think people can see the soapbox is the ALA and its members treating this page as if it were on
Here, look at this, this is in part why this external link is relevant and why it might even be added into the body of the article itself: "YALSA Recommends Books For Young Adults Who Enjoy 'Gossip Girl' Series," ALA Press Release, 11 Apr 2006. The external link being added is "Racy Reading; Gossip Girl Series is Latest Installment in Provocative Teen Fiction, and It's As Popular As It Is Controversial, by Linda Shrieves, The Orlando Sentinel, 6 Aug 2005. It contains significant material from the YALSA president on the topic. It is perfectly wikipediable and has nothing to do with any soapbox of mine.
Honestly, this controversy kind of exposes Jessamyn's repeated false claims about me here and in other places as she attempts to gather the forces (and that's just one example) to help her keep this article (and others) an ALA province only. --LegitimateAndEvenCompelling 11:37, 12 September 2007 (UTC)
I just noticed Alecmconroy already removed the link claiming it has nothing to do with YALSA.
Let me educate everyone. The "YALSA Recommends Books" link I gave above contains the statements of "YALSA President Pam Spencer Holley" as does the "Racy Reading" article. Indeed that's why the reporter spoke with Pam Spencer Holley in the first place. And that's in part why the article is relevant. If Alecmconroy is not persuaded by this and insists that the word YALSA must appear in the article, it kind of evidences why Jessamyn reached out to him for his assistance. --LegitimateAndEvenCompelling 11:45, 12 September 2007 (UTC)
You are correct, that is not the only place she is "attempting to gather the forces" here. My understanding of WP policy is that the correct approach, if discussion doesn't resolve the issue on Talk pages, is to take it to Arbitration, not run to admins to get them to take sides. Maybe I missed something? --profg 14:28, 12 September 2007 (UTC)
Hi LAEC. I see what you mean. Yes, in the light of how the organization works, its relevant, but not as controversy. Its simply good information. Its fine in the links section. Lingorama 15:29, 12 September 2007 (UTC)

Well, there's two problem here. One is that applying the link in question to the YALSA is basically OR, going along the lines: 1: Gossip girl was recommended by YALSA. 2: Gossip Girl is controversal. 3: YALSA is evil. If a notable source had made that argument in the article, fine. But they don't-- the link doesn't talk about YALSA. There's so many policies flying in the face of this, I don't know where to start. it's used as OR, it's giving massive undue weight to one tiny book with a tenuous connection to YALSA, it's certainly being inserted with a non-neutral POV. The link is coming out, nowhere near a close call-- it's just a question of getting enough legitimate editors to look at the subject.

The second problem is that Wikipedia is being used as a battlefield and a soapbox to push a personal political agenda, despite a year's worth of warnings on this. I basically don't know what else to do on that except to start the wheels turning for blocks and bans. --Alecmconroy 17:31, 12 September 2007 (UTC)

I've referred this matter to Wikipedia:Community sanction noticeboard. Hopefully the ensuing discussion will yield a long term solution to this situation. --Alecmconroy 00:12, 13 September 2007 (UTC)
Okay. I'll be more specific. The "Racy Reading" article says:
But books can provoke discussions, says Pam Spencer Holley of the American Library Association. Although she wouldn't hand a child a copy of "Rainbow Party" without comment, she thinks that book -- and others -- can provoke family discussions.
"I think I'd say, 'This is something we need to sit and talk about,' " says Holley. "It's a way for kids to experience something at a safe distance -- and a way for them to make up their minds about how they would respond in that kind of situation."
She's happy to see teen girls reading. Eventually, girls who are reading Gossip Girls will move on to better books, she says.
"Unless you read stuff that's perhaps not the most literary, you'll never understand what good works are," says Holley. "But when you get them hooked on reading, then you can lead them so many other places, as far as books go."
Besides, she says, what's the worst thing that can happen? "Nobody complains about the adult women who read Harlequin romances."
The "YALSA Recommends Books" link says:
YALSA recommends books for young adults who enjoy 'Gossip Girl' series
CHICAGO -The Young Adult Library Services Association (YALSA), the fastest growing division of the American Library Association (ALA), has announced a list of books to recommend to teens, both avid and reluctant readers, who are looking for books like Cecily von Ziegesar's "Gossip Girl" series.
"The books on this list are perfect for when your readers have finished with every "Gossip Girl" title in your library and are clamoring for another book like the Gossip Girl," said YALSA President Pam Spencer Holley.
For this and for other reasons, Pam Spencer Holley was at that time President of YALSA. That's why it is notable. The article not specifically saying she is the president of YALSA is irrelevant if she was in fact the president. The reporter likely would not have contacted her but for her being the president of YALSA.
Now YALSA is in the business of making book recommendations to children. That is why YALSA does belong on Wikipedia, even if ALA members created and maintain it. Indeed Pam Spencer Holley is the author of books containing recommended books for children. As the ALA itself says on that link I gave, "For nearly 50 years YALSA has been the world leader in selecting books, videos, and audiobooks for teens."
Now the "Racy Reading" article contains an interview with the YALSA president on the very issue that makes YALSA notable, even as self declared by the ALA. The article definitely belongs somewhere, some way on this page. In an effort to avoid injecting POV, I only added the external link, not textual material, and here I am being threatened with being blocked and banned. And the ALA's Banned Books Week is right around the corner!
I have not once here, either on the talk page or the main article, injected the slightest bit of POV or soap box. I am just making a good faith effort to add information directly relevant to this article in an NPOV manner and that is fully compliant with wiki policy. I am making improvements to this page.
The way I am being threatened with blocks and bans by Alecmconroy whose words are approved by Jessamyn is truly an affront to the wikipedia community. Yes, when I was a newbie, even with an IP address, I did not understand how wikipedia works and AlecMcConroy actually helped me understand a lot. Now, all this time later, it appears I am always to be judged as that newbie, with Jessamyn always to assume I am trying to inject POV into articles. In this case, all I did was add a link to a MSM article that is directly on point with subject of the page.
Frankly, I do not understand why Jessamyn is acting in this way as her past arguments have always been tough but fair, until now. Now she seeks to "block and ban" me. This from a member of the nation's leading Freedom of Speech advocates in public libraries, and group that has already blocked and banned me in other contexts. I would think if Jessamyn is ever called to testify on anything, this page should stand as evidence likely to be useful to her opposition. Why just the last time Jessamyn and I worked on a page she left in some of the material I added, and when she removed the other she explained why and I understood. You see I do work with her and she with me. Until now, I guess, where she condones by being blocked in these circumstances.
I do feel that an attempt is being made to intimidate me. I do feel singled out for exclusion by Jessamyn, a member of the ALA, who even has her own main wiki page here. She is clearly in the wrong here, and from her comments to AlecMconroy I sense she knows it, yet her loyalty to the ALA is apparently greatly that her loyalty to the rules that guide Wikipedia and its community.
I do not really know how to handle these kinds of situations and would appreciate any assistance in this regard. Thank you. --LegitimateAndEvenCompelling 00:26, 13 September 2007 (UTC)
On the content issue: the problem isn't that there is no conceivable connection linking the news article to the YALSA. The problem is that the article just plain isn't about the YASLA. The news article is about a book which was mentioned in a page which was published by the YASLA. The newspaper report included a one line quote from a woman who was also working for the YALSA. And the Gossip Girl is a book that is being made into a tv show staring Blake Lively who was in "Sisterhood of the Traveling Pants" with Cannon Smith who was in "My Dog Skip" with Kevin Bacon.
If you want to make an original research argumentative essay that reasons: YALSA is evil because it doesn't condemn Gossip Girl which is a controversial book, then the link might be useful. But the root problem is this, which we all have hand ample time to know-- it is not appropriate to be constructing your own original research arguments and inserting them into dozens of wikipedia articles. This isn't the place for that, LAEC has, through his actions, told us all he's going to continue using wikipedia to promote his political agenda and isn't going to stop until we stop him.
I've said it before--- there's nothing wrong with original research, their's nothing wrong with the concerns about libraries, they're nothing wrong with trying to make an argumnt--- but wikipedia isn't the place for that. If you are unable to write neutrally on an issue, you have no business writing here. Go to Wikinfo, where "Editorial"-style is appropriate, opinions are welcome, and original research is encouraged.
--Alecmconroy 02:50, 13 September 2007 (UTC)
For what it's worth, I am not a member of ALA. I am a past member. I am happy to work within the Wikipedia process and let people less close to this particular issue make decisions about your continued edits on ALA-related pages. Jessamyn (talk) 03:25, 13 September 2007 (UTC)

ALA Best Books for Young Adults[edit]

ALA Best Books for Young Adults is a redirect to this article, yet there is occurrence of the word best, much less that honor.

ALA may recognize Best Fiction and Best Non-fiction, after more than forty years of Best Books through 2010.

Best Books for Young Adults at ALA

Selections from Brief History of the Young Adult Services Division (ALA):

"... the most active was the Book Selection Committee. This committee started preparing annual lists of _Best Books for Young Adults_ (although the name was not the same, having evolved over the years from _Significant Adult Books for Teens_ and _Interesting Books_) in 1952. In 1954, the list was first reprinted, from TOP OF THE NEWS and BOOKLIST, for membership distribution and promotion. The next year it was decided that reprinting the list was a good thing, and it has been reprinted, sold and distributed ever since then.
"In 1975, YASD sponsored its fourth preconference at San Francisco called _Book You._ The participants analyzed and discussed the past 15 years of _Best Books for Young Adults_ lists to come up with a new retrospective list of old and new titles called _Best of the Best: Still Alive in 1975._"

--P64 (talk) 19:02, 13 December 2011 (UTC)

Best Books for Young Adults, second edition, Betty Carter with Sally Estes and Linda Waddle, YALSA, ALA, 2000. ISBN 0-838-93501-X
—says that the first edition (by Carter alone, 1994) includes much more coverage of history, procedure, controversy. (There has been a third edition, 2007.)
This second edition dedicates only pages 1-13 to "Part One: Background", before the lists begin. This edition provides thematic lists selected by the editors (Adventure, Animals, etc); lists all 1966 to 1999 winners in two ways, by author and year; and reproduces four official multi-year best-of-the-best lists, ranging in scope from 1960-1974 to 1967-1992.
According to this source,
  • currently (since when?) the "Best Books" list comprises all nominated books that score at least 9 approvals by 15 committee members (yes/no vote, evidently); the "Top Ten Best" do not all score 15 of 15
  • "Top Ten Best Books for Young Adults" dates from 1997 —so YALSA online BBYA lists is complete for Top Tens
  • the number of Best Books peaked at 97 in 1993, which "provoked strong discussion", followed by 70 to 84 books annually during 1994-1999
  • there were 27 Best Books in 1966; 39 in 1976; 69 in 1986 (manual counts of lists reproduced in the book); 80 in 1986 (according to Carter)
  • before 1973, only "adult books" (as marketed) were eligible. Books marketed for "young adults" have been considered since then and now constitute a majority of the selections. Meanwhile the marketing category has changed (mainly between the 1994 and 2000 first and second editions) to include more books oriented to older teens.
  • ten committees have selected the lists under seven listnames
  • "Books for Young People, 1930" is the original precursor
--P64 (talk) 20:38, 14 January 2012 (UTC)
There are 99 books on the latest of those four official multi-year best-of-the-best lists, namely 1967-1992 —pages 190-91, by my count; 100 seems likely in fact. Order of magnitude: one in ten of the annual BBYA. And certainly WP:Notable, which I doubt regarding the long annual lists.
That list doesn't give any data but author and title, not even year. Like all lists reproduced here, it is entirely alphabetical by author. Contrast the lists reproduced by YALSA online: BBYA from 1996 to 2010: subdivided Nonfiction and Fiction, with some bibliog data.
Online YALSA recommends the third edition
  • Best Books for Young Adults, 3rd Edition. 2007. 376p. ISBN 978-0-8389-3569-9 $37.50 ALA Members; $42 Nonmembers. (Edited by Holly Koelling with a foreword by Betty Carter, editor of the first two editions.) --P64 (talk) 18:12, 2 February 2012 (UTC)

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