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NLS Operations Alert

No. 19-61

DATE         :   September 16, 2019
TO             :   Network libraries
FROM        :   Kristen Fernekes, Head, Communications and Outreach
SUBJECT   :   NLS Name Change


In May, NLS announced that we had received final approval from the Librarian of Congress to change our name. As of October 1, 2019, our name will change officially to "National Library Service for the Blind and Print Disabled," though we will continue to be referred to by the abbreviation NLS. In Spanish, our new name will be "Servicio Nacional de Bibliotecas para personas ciegas y con dificultades para acceder al texto impreso." Along with the name change, NLS will also begin using a new logo that is in keeping with the new graphic identity the Library of Congress implemented in late 2018.

Both NLS and the Library of Congress sought input on this change from stakeholder groups and gathered data through various public channels when considering our new moniker. With this name change, we intend to address the use of outdated language in our current name and more clearly communicate the breadth of those we serve.

A few reminders regarding the transition to the new name:


  *   Please do not discard existing materials that include the old name. In the interest of avoiding waste, we will revise and reprint materials over the coming months or as current supplies are expended. Network libraries should plan to use the new name on materials and communications moving forward.


  *   If your library uses the NLS identity on any materials or channels and would like to replace that logo with the new one, please contact Kristen Fernekes ([log in to unmask]<mailto:[log in to unmask]>) or Mark Layman ([log in to unmask]<mailto:[log in to unmask]>). We only ask that you show us how the new logo will be used before it goes live.

We would also appreciate network libraries spreading the word. Below is language that you can use in your newsletters, social media, or on your websites on or after October 1.

For Newsletters:

NLS Has a New Name

The Library of Congress's National Library Service for the Blind and Physically Handicapped, which provides braille and audio materials to the [Library name here], has changed its name. As of October 1, 2019, it will be known as "National Library Service for the Blind and Print Disabled." The new name addresses the use of outdated language and more clearly communicates the breadth of those served. NLS sought input on this name change implementation from stakeholder groups and gathered data through various public channels, including its users.

"We've been considering a change for some time, so we're happy to see this day arrive," NLS Director Karen Keninger said. "We are very pleased to share our new name and accompanying graphic identity with the public and feel that the new name, as with all of NLS's work, puts the emphasis on the people we serve."

This name change will not affect the acronym by which the program is known generally, so NLS will still be NLS.

For Social Media:

The Library of Congress's National Library Service for the Blind and Physically Handicapped has a new name. As of October 1, it will be known as "National Library Service for the Blind and Print Disabled," but will still go by the abbreviation NLS. To learn more about the name change, go to loc.gov/nls.

For Website Posts:

The Library of Congress's National Library Service for the Blind and Physically Handicapped, which provides braille and audio materials to the [Library name here], has changed its name. As of October 1, 2019, it will be known as "National Library Service for the Blind and Print Disabled" but will still go by the abbreviation NLS.

"We've been considering a change for some time, so we're happy to see this day arrive," NLS Director Karen Keninger said. "We are very pleased to share our new name and graphic identity with our NLS community and feel that the new name, as with all of NLS's work, puts the emphasis on the people we serve."

To learn more about the name change, please visit loc.gov/nls.


For more information contact:
Kristen Fernekes
Head, Communications and Outreach
[log in to unmask]<mailto:[log in to unmask]>