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Susan Hornung-IL (staff)'s picture

I approve the Proposal for Reserve Funds for FY14, rev. 6-7-13.

Susan Hornung-IL (staff)'s picture

This reserve funds proposal is a carryover of items from last year, plus a new addition of $20,000 for development of the app for RUSA recommended books and banned books.

If it looks like more time is needed to discuss this proposal, we will bring it to the annual conference meeting for a vote instead, but discussion can start right now. Please feel free to ask questions, make comments, or start discussion on any of the items in this proposal.

Susan Hornung



M. Kathleen Kern's picture

This is an exciting opportunity to get our Awards info out to more librarians and the public.  YALSA has a similar app for their awards.  

I want to note also, that money stays in the Reserve fund until it is needed and if we do not spend all of the reserve allocation, it will stay in the operating reserve.  This is what happened with this year's bugdet (FY2013) as we spent less than we'd allowed from the reserve.

M. Kathleen Kern

RUSA Past-President


Ann Brown's picture

I live for branding.  However, I worry that we are limiting ourselves and our users with a the proposed app.  The way the proposal currently reads, we're leaving out all Android and Windows devices.  

Not everyone has mobile devices, so the ability to load the app on a computer or other tablet would also be preferable.  For example, you can use (some) Google Play Apps on your desktop if you use Chrome.  I would only support this going forward if we change the language to include devices beyond Apple.


RSS Vice-Chair/Chair-Elect

Susan Hornung-IL (staff)'s picture

Good point - thanks for bringing it up, Ann. The next phase of development for the YALSA app is for Androids. That will take about $10,000 more. We could increase our budget for this project to include Androids, but I thought it might be good to see how it plays out for YALSA, since they are the model we are looking at.

I definitely think we need to expand to other devices, though.

Susan Hornung


Joseph Thompson's picture

I'm approving the Reserve Funds proposal as presented, but I also wanted to throw some ideas into the mix in the hope that they'll be considered before the book recommendation app project goes fully ahead.

1. Could pricing be obtained from companies such as Boopsie to see at what cost they could provide the service?  My understanding is that these services not only keep the app updated, but also make it available in apple, android, and windows formats.

2. Realizing that YALSA has already created a similar app, I'm wondering if there's instead a broader opportunity here for some type of an "ALA Recommends" app that would include all of the award winners across all of the divisions.  Though we want to use this an opportunity to draw attention to RUSA and our awards, I'm wondering if we actually might get more attention if we capture people with the ALA brand and then draw them to RUSA's recommendations once they're already in.  It could prove to be an opportunity for the divisions to collaborate if there's a shared benefit.


Nora Dethloff's picture

I really like Joe's second point. Since an app already exists, is there any potential for collaborating with YALSA (and / or other divisions) to create an ALA-wide awards app? When I think about it, it seems less likely that people would download multiple award apps from various sections. They're more likely to go with the area they're most familiar with. If all the awards lists were in one package, we could get RUSA awards exposed to people with a wide variety of interests. 

I'm still in favor of the proposal, I just think we need to explore the possibility of collaboration, or at least design something with an eye toward possibly merging the apps at a later time. 

Ann Brown's picture

I like it Joe!  And yes to Nora's point about multiple apps.


Anne Beaubien's picture

I like Joe's idea for an "ALA recommends" app and a company that will keep the app up to date and make it available in multiple formats

M. Kathleen Kern's picture

Good points, Joe.

I think that a lot will depend on YALSA's willingness to share.  The idea of an ALA app is interesting (and it fits with the inclusion of the Banned Books lists).  I am not sure if it hides our visibility to be part of a broader app or makes us more discoverable.  

I am voting to fund this (and the rest of the reserve allocation) so that we can have the money available to us as we pursue this development.  

Are there other "Adult" lists outside of RUSA?  Two apps, a children's/YA and an adult might be a possibility. 


M. Kathleen Kern

RUSA Past-President


Andy Spackman's picture

I also like the idea Joe raises. Additionally, although YALSA has paved the way, is there any evidence of how well-received their app has been? Will it prove worth their investment?

Michelle Baildon's picture

I think this is a great point, Andy--I'd like to know if the YALSA app has been popular, and what sort of benefit YALSA has gotten from it.

Susan Hornung-IL (staff)'s picture

This poll is now closed. The proposal was approved with 14 yes votes.

Susan Hornung