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Add events to LT Local, LT donates to needy readers

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Edited: Nov 20, 2012, 9:43am Top

See the blog post. Discuss the feature itself here. Discuss where we should give $$ here.

Nov 20, 2012, 9:55am Top

The link in the blog post sentence
Come discuss where we should spend the money on Talk here.
is not a good link.

Nov 20, 2012, 9:57am Top

Not important, but every time I look at it I see LT donates to nerdy readers. :)

Nov 20, 2012, 10:01am Top

I've added the blog post about the API.

I'm in the process of making a page that tallies up how much money people have done.

Nov 20, 2012, 10:02am Top

Great idea for getting people interested in Local.

I just wish the overall interface were a bit better, if this is going to be the big moment of showing off the feature. The maps are so awkward and small.

Nov 20, 2012, 10:13am Top

Yeah. I think this is an opportunity. I'll be working on it all day and going forward, although my first target is a tally page.

Do others agree about the maps? I don't. It may just be screen size. I thought the general consensus was opposite—the maps are pointless and therefore slow it down.

Nov 20, 2012, 10:26am Top

I mainly use Local to find bookstores in a given neighbourhood, by looking at the map. If I zoom in enough that I can see all the street names, the area shown is pretty tiny. And even in the closest zoom, there are often almost-overlapping circles that I struggle to click on.

The main improvements I'd like to see are:
1) An option to see a full-screen map, and to zoom more closely
2) A map that loads extra venues as we scroll around. The slowness comes from loading a ridiculous number of venues to begin with in big urban areas.

I also find it frustrating that the default map is so zoomed out that it's completely useless. So much time has to be spent zooming in, and then moving the map around to look at the area of interest in the tiny box. And then I'll accidentally click directly on a venue instead of opening it in a new tab and I'll have to repeat the whole process again.

Nov 20, 2012, 10:40am Top

As far as qualifying events goes, I think there needs to be a stipulation that these should be actual events - I'm thinking here of gangleri's usage of the field to record birth and death dates and locations. They're useful to him, I'm sure, but not really what the feature is about.

Nov 20, 2012, 10:43am Top

>9 timspalding:

He's being asked to stop doing that.

But yes. I think it say something like that in the fine print. But yes.

Nov 20, 2012, 10:45am Top

I'm silently hoping some day hundreds of Munich people will turn up on his "venue" in order to witness the "event". I'm mischievous, I know ;-)

Nov 20, 2012, 11:46am Top

> 8

Seriously? He does that? Wow.

Nov 20, 2012, 12:02pm Top

I tried to add an event to Waterstone's Bentalls Centre Kingston upon Thames and got this fatal error:

You have an error in your SQL syntax; check the manual that corresponds to your MySQL server version for the right syntax to use near ' 'Author signing - Paul Ferguson', '94499', '', '', 1353387600, ' at line 24
INSERT INTO events ( ev_venueid, ev_title, ev_descriptionid, ev_url, ev_alternatelocation, ev_stamp, ev_date, ev_time, ev_usernum, ev_enteredstamp, ev_mediaurl, ev_version ) VALUES ( , 'Author signing - Paul Ferguson', '94499', '', '', 1353387600, '-0-0', '0:0:00', '186789', 1353430697, '', 2 )

- fatal error (31.1)

Am I doing something wrong?

Nov 20, 2012, 12:08pm Top

I've prevented the error, so it will merely say "No venue specified." Now we need to figure out why you're not getting a venue.

Can you describe your process here?

Edited: Nov 20, 2012, 12:20pm Top

I just tried again, this time for Waterstone's Piccadilly (London). Selected the venue, clicked on 'add event', entered event title. description, date and time and clicked to submit. Got your 'No venue specified' this time. The venue address button was checked.

Nice idea, by the way ;-)

Nov 20, 2012, 12:22pm Top


Anyone have any idea what he's doing differently?

Edited: Nov 20, 2012, 12:41pm Top

Not a clue. I just added a fake event for Waterstone's Piccadilly following those exact steps and there were no problems. I then added another one set in the past (cloning the first one) and that also went fine (although it removed the first one, which I guess might be a bug).

(I have since removed them both.)

Nov 20, 2012, 12:51pm Top

Yes, no luck in trying to replicate the error for me either.

Nov 20, 2012, 2:04pm Top

I've tried both starting with the venue page and clicking 'add event' and by starting with the 'Add Event' tab and searching there for the venue - 'No venue specified' in both cases :-(

IE9 and W7

Nov 20, 2012, 2:16pm Top

>18 abbottthomas: - Ah, I replicated in IE9 on Win 7, yep.

Nov 20, 2012, 2:39pm Top

I'm having that problem (just mentioned it on the other thread, sorry, I didn't realize at the time that this thread existed). If it's an IE9 thing, I'll try again later with FF.

Nov 20, 2012, 2:50pm Top

I'm changing it now, although it still wouldn't explain why it would be if you start FROM a venue page.

Nov 20, 2012, 3:43pm Top

Got it. A difference in how IE9 deals with stuff not within a TD inside a table.…

Edited: Nov 20, 2012, 4:01pm Top

I added a book discussion at the Lake Villa District Library (IL) for tomorrow. It keeps saving it as an event for November 30, 1999.

Otherwise, very easy to use and I'll add events in, as I become aware of them.

ETA: I added a second book discussion, this time for one in December, and it defaults to November 30, 1999 as well.

Nov 20, 2012, 4:29pm Top

Tell me if this still true—and what system you use.

I've got the Paris wife one and am editing it.

Nov 20, 2012, 4:34pm Top

I added two events for Anderson's Book Store in Naperville, IL (Huckabee and Meacham, I think they were) and both also showed November 30, 1999.

I'm at work, using IE 8. Perhaps I should do this only when I'm at home.

Nov 20, 2012, 4:35pm Top

Yeah, there's an IE9 problem. I'm investigating.

Nov 20, 2012, 4:35pm Top

How long will it take to show up on the helpers page?

Nov 20, 2012, 4:46pm Top

Okay. It's fixed. I hate IE9.

Actually, if it's in the past, it will never show up.

Those old ones need to be re-edited to give them the right time and date.

Nov 20, 2012, 4:56pm Top

Works fine now, Tim. Thanks for fixing. I updated my Lake Villa Library and Anderson's Bookshop entries.

It's a pretty slow time of year for bookish events.

Nov 20, 2012, 5:16pm Top

Thanks and sorry!

Nov 20, 2012, 5:17pm Top

I've added faint adder-credit to every event.

Nov 20, 2012, 6:17pm Top

Many thanks, Tim - working perfectly now. *basking in my adder-credit*

Nov 21, 2012, 3:31am Top

I see that, too, and this morning the ones I did last night are credited on the helper page, as well.

I did it last night to try it out. I doubt that I will bother again. Most book events in Vienna are NOT in book venues, and I see on the helper page that people are deleting venues as 'not book venue' so if I get the various museums and 'Messe' added for this week's Book fair, there is a good chance I would have to do it all over again next year. Same for the Cafes that host many of the other big sets of book events. I also found the calendar and time entry clunky.

Nov 21, 2012, 3:49am Top

People shouldn't delete venues if they are appropriately marked and may have bookish events.

Nov 21, 2012, 4:24am Top

It's not as if the German translation is confusing in this regard, Veranstaltungsort is very neutral and says nothing about it having to be a library or a bookstore. It's as neutral as Venue.

Nov 21, 2012, 4:46am Top

Who's doing it exactly?

Nov 21, 2012, 5:29am Top

I think I'm going to be able to get all B&N events in tomorrow. They've made their system marginally more friendly to it. That'll be a lot of events.

Nov 21, 2012, 5:30am Top

By the way, once consequence here would be that if we can get this to boil, guys like IndieBound will want their events in it again.

Nov 21, 2012, 8:09am Top

36> The ones that were there last night have scrolled off.

Nov 21, 2012, 8:27am Top

Jeremy will look at it.

Nov 21, 2012, 11:42am Top

I wouldn't count on IndieBound doing anything rational.

Nov 22, 2012, 1:41am Top

Cloning events doesn't seem to be working for me. The event never shows up on the page/in the system for me when I clone the information (but if I enter all the information manually it's fine).

Using Windows 7, Chrome 23.

Nov 22, 2012, 1:36pm Top

Cloning events doesn't seem to really work for me either, it just edits the original event (Win Vista, Chrome 23)

Nov 23, 2012, 12:19pm Top

With regards to B&N, all those came in as added by API with no touchstones, raising $.02 for each one. My concern here is that some user may have been planning to manually add those with touchstones for $.15 and now they don't have that option, significantly reducing the amount we could possibly put towards our donation. Over $747 difference actually.

Maybe I'm being nitpicky, but I just entered 21 events and have only racked up $2.95.

Nov 23, 2012, 3:13pm Top

>33 MarthaJeanne:/39 - Can you give me an example venue that was deleted, so I can look at it? I'm not seeing any current ones in the logs, so I'm trying to hunt down what's up. If you have one you're sure of that'll speed things up. Thanks!

Nov 23, 2012, 4:09pm Top

I saw a couple of restaurants on the list of just deleted venues. They weren't anything I know so I don't know which they were. But they are just the sort of venue that I would have to add for many of the largest book events in Vienna.

Nov 23, 2012, 4:12pm Top

There's no reason not to add them if there are bookish events. And they, once added, shouldn't be deleted as not venues if there are bookish events listed under them. I'll see if I can figure out which they were, but certainly if someone sees a specific example just let me know :-)

Nov 23, 2012, 4:42pm Top

I deleted Makeda Ethiopian Restaurant. It was added for a book signing four years ago, but so far as I know there have been no book related events since (and perhaps before). I'm fine with venues that have book events irregularly, even annually. But it just seems like clutter to add a venue for a one-off event and keep it around on the map forever.

I would actually prefer some type of temporary venue option that would appear on the map as long as long as it had an active event and then disappear afterward.

Nov 23, 2012, 6:13pm Top

Echoing Jarandel, cloning events only edits the original event. Forgot to mention that part.

Nov 23, 2012, 10:56pm Top


Look at the publishing panel on November 28. Click on the "more" link at the bottom. Then look at the second paragraph.

"Ian Frazier is a New Yorker staff writer and author of the bestsellers Great Plains and target="_top">Travels in Siberia and the novel The Cursing Mommy's Book of Days."

Nov 24, 2012, 12:28am Top

Rather than making and deleting venues so they aren't on the map, let's drop all non-library/bookstore venues from the map, no?

Nov 24, 2012, 1:04am Top

I've come across interesting "non-book" venues before, like stores that actually do have a book section. It might be nice to have two classes of other venues, those that are completely irrelevant and those that actually do have general bookish interest.

Nov 24, 2012, 5:02am Top

The map would be much more useful if we could switch between which sort of venues was being shown.

Nov 24, 2012, 8:23am Top

>51 timspalding:
My other list includes things like local historical societies. They are not libraries but they usually have archives. I want venues like this on the map without having to call them either libraries or bookstores.

I think we need another category for event-only venues that do not appear on the map, or at least do not appear when no events are scheduled.

Nov 24, 2012, 9:01am Top

> 51

let's drop all non-library/bookstore venues from the map, no?

NO! Seminary Co-op frequently holds events at U of C's International House. Not a library/bookstore. There are often events at the Trib Tower. Not a library/bookstore. Danny's Tavern has a reading series. Not a library/bookstore.

These aren't one-offs.

Nov 24, 2012, 12:23pm Top

>54 eromsted: I agree. It'd be nice if venues that don't actually sell books would show up on the map only when they have scheduled events within, say, a week or two. And they'd need their own icon so they were easily identifiable.

Nov 24, 2012, 12:26pm Top

Maybe some way to make them dormant, after they haven't had any events for a while? Only for other venues of course - it should never, ever apply to libraries or bookstores. Not a clue if this would work in combination with the map.

Nov 24, 2012, 3:22pm Top

How about a category/display option of "Event Venue" for places that host events but are not involved in the book trade?

Nov 24, 2012, 11:54pm Top

43> I get the same behavior. Basically, cloning events does not work. I THINK it worked a few days ago, though.

Nov 25, 2012, 1:39pm Top

53> The map would be much more useful if we could switch between which sort of venues was being shown.

I second this.

Nov 26, 2012, 2:29pm Top

#51 No, please don't. Toronto's Harbourfront Centre, neither a library nor a bookstore, hosts a weekly reading series throughout fall/winter as well as a 2-week International Festival of Authors annually in October.

Nov 27, 2012, 7:57pm Top

I was adding events for Mysterious Galaxy's San Diego store and there were already some events that were on their local page from Penguin, but the Penguin dates don't match MG's dates.

Penguin event page: http://www.us.penguingroup.com/nf/Events/EventDetailPage/0,,18965443,00.html
MG event page: http://www.mystgalaxy.com/event/thomas-caplan-signs-sd-011913

There's also a weird event showing from Penguin saying President Clinton will be there on the same day, but there's nothing on MG's website about that, and nothing showing anything about Clinton in the Penguin event page: http://www.us.penguingroup.com/nf/Events/EventDetailPage/0,,18965444,00.html

Nov 29, 2012, 7:26pm Top

I'm seeing a bunch of recently added events where the touchstones point to the wrong book or author. In the rush to rack up events, shouldn't we still be careful to make sure the touchstones actually point to the right thing? (And, if the book isn't actually in LT, just remove the touchstone rather than have it point to an identically titled book by someone else?)

Edited: Dec 1, 2012, 8:39pm Top

FYI: About $60 fell off the money. My calculations didn't factor in that it's supposed to count only future events. I'm currently entering thousands of old IndieBound events. (Heck, why not, if we can do it?) So I was noticing.

I'm being generous with the timing. Although I'm only entering those events now, I'm counting them as worth money if they came on or after the 20th, when the blog post came.

And I'm being generous in that I never said that LibraryThing's only scraping work would count at all. But, well, I want to donate some money, and it's an incentive for me too.

Dec 2, 2012, 3:45pm Top

There's one good thing I've noticed today - that some of the events that I intended to enter were already picked up and entered by the scrapers. In my case, the scraper was Penguin.

Edited: Dec 2, 2012, 3:57pm Top

Still trying to find things for my area, and still coming up with nothing at all. Well, nothing I can tie to any specific location, so nothing helpful. Are Dutch publishers avoiding publicity? Grrrr.

Edited: Dec 2, 2012, 3:58pm Top

I'm finding that there are very few literary events at this time. I figure that's because of the religious holidays associated with December. Most events near me now seem to be either musical or religious in nature.

Spring and fall seem to be the prime times for book festivals.

Dec 2, 2012, 7:55pm Top

I don't know where to look and I don't really have any interest to learn. I am tired of this and wish we would move on to other exciting LT developments.

Dec 13, 2012, 2:11pm Top

Do events get checked manually or something, or is there an automatic delay, I've added a few events last night and today, but I'm still showing having $0 contributed.

Dec 13, 2012, 8:42pm Top

Tim, I tried adding an event tonight, but it just wouldn't save.


Dec 13, 2012, 8:44pm Top

> 69

Jerry, the counter is broken. We're waiting for Tim to have some extra time to come back to fix it. He is aware that there's a problem.

Dec 13, 2012, 11:26pm Top

> 70

It was the server problem. The event has now been saved.

Dec 14, 2012, 3:54am Top

Ah, ok. that explains it.

Dec 14, 2012, 5:27am Top

#66 BarkingMatt: The bookstores probably have the events listed, not the publishers. I know that the bookstore where I work (paaaarttime) has its own webpage listing events. The bookstore has a lot of personal contact with the authors too (especially local authors), but events also go through the publishers.
Event page: http://www.boekenberg.nl/activiteiten.shtml

Dec 16, 2012, 1:13pm Top

Just a note to say that the $ totals still keep falling. :(

Dec 16, 2012, 2:17pm Top

My latest enter still doesn't show on the money page.

Dec 16, 2012, 3:08pm Top

My latest enter still doesn't show on the money page.

Is it still worthwhile entering them? Tim? Jeremy?

Dec 16, 2012, 9:22pm Top

Hey. I'm working on this now. I think I can figure it out on my own, but I'd be interested to know if you think the total's been falling because there are fewer events listed, or because they're changing categories?

Dec 16, 2012, 10:08pm Top

Found the problem.

Dec 16, 2012, 10:15pm Top

...which was?

Dec 16, 2012, 10:16pm Top

They're looking good now, Tim.

Dec 16, 2012, 10:17pm Top

Actually, I'm not sure. Something was causing the events to be set to a "charity state" of 0. So long as I recalculate everything from the initial date, it comes out correctly. So it's doing that.

Dec 17, 2012, 2:56am Top

Much better.

Dec 17, 2012, 8:03am Top

Yay, much better.

@BarkingMatt - see http://www.selexyz.nl/evenementen/ for more events in .nl

Dec 17, 2012, 11:13am Top

Oh, that's marvelous. That's a general events site for all of Holland?

I can scrape that. I can do Google translate, but don't speak Dutch. Any pitfalls?

Dec 17, 2012, 11:37am Top

It's not for the entire Netherlands, only for the largest bookstore chain (Selexyz).

Dec 17, 2012, 12:34pm Top

Still. Pretty good. I'm going to need to map their stores to venues, right?

Dec 17, 2012, 1:03pm Top

#87 A lot of the Selexyz scores are already listed as venues on local. I recently went through them and updated some.

Dec 18, 2012, 6:42am Top

timspalding any pitfalls? yes, they're not all bookish events. Most are, so I'd be happy with a few choirs or piano's among possible author appearances.
They're almost all in one of their book stores, and when I added some events, they were all already venues.

Dec 21, 2012, 3:10am Top

Thanks JerryMmm. I've added http://www.selexyz.nl/evenementen/ and matched up their stores. It fetched 38 future events. Another 5 revolve around external venues that need to get matched up. If you want to help match them, check out http://www.librarything.com/help_general.php .

Dec 22, 2012, 7:23pm Top

Changes don't seem to be saving to venues in Local today.

(Was trying to fix this entry, which should be the Main Exchange, not the Commissary: http://www.librarything.com/venue/79228)

Dec 22, 2012, 8:07pm Top

>91 lampbane: - Probably a byproduct of some server slowness Seth just cured, so this should be cleared up now.

Dec 22, 2012, 8:09pm Top

Yes, it is! Thanks.

Also, I wanted to ask if there are any plans to scrape library systems for events, if it's possible and we're not worried about having too many community non-book-related events (like computer classes).

Dec 23, 2012, 12:46am Top

Also, I wanted to ask if there are any plans to scrape library systems for events, if it's possible and we're not worried about having too many community non-book-related events (like computer classes).

So, yes, we're in talks to get more data—without scraping, actually.

As you say, that's a problem. I think the first solution is to allow users to screen out stuff. But I think we'll be forced to move to a model where we set some events to a "secondary" status, which is hidden by default.

Dec 23, 2012, 8:28am Top

Perhaps you can use a similar system as you use now with events that need to be matched to venues (the link above).
I would imagine you'd just need a human to read the description and decide if it was a bookish event or not, have it need 3 yays (without showing previous votes) to pass and it'll show?

Jan 3, 2013, 3:54am Top

FYI: I've brought the calculation back FOR NOW—first to reward continued addition of events and second because the scripts that automatically add events from publishers and so forth have been rolling back some of the money already gained on events it has to edit as it goes, and I need to fix that.

Jan 11, 2013, 12:05pm Top

It's all nice and well. But when I wish to add the "Boekids" festival: first it's held at two locations - how do I add that? Secondly I had to add both locations (neither of them are primarily bookish), and they're simply not recognized when I try to add the event.

Edited: Apr 5, 2013, 9:33am Top

Where are we with this now, Tim? It's past April 4th so did your "offer" expire?

Apr 5, 2013, 9:45am Top

We're moving forward - it's been a liiiittle bit crazy here this week but stay tuned for some news on this early next week (if not sooner).

Apr 5, 2013, 10:06am Top

I'll hang in there then.

I love the grand welcome you're giving the GR refugees this week!

Oct 1, 2014, 12:32pm Top

I'm having trouble adding &eventurl to link back to the library's page for an event. The format I'm using for that parameter is:


(URL escaped).

Is this correct?

Nov 25, 2014, 1:32pm Top

Sep 16, 2015, 5:14am Top

Is there still a way to add events by feed if you find a feed for a store?


Feb 2, 2016, 2:01pm Top

Sorry, I'm just seeing this! I think so. If you can edit the venue info, you should see a field for "Events RSS" (see the Help page: http://www.librarything.com/wiki/index.php/HelpThing:Local/VenueAdd).

Feb 2, 2016, 3:46pm Top

No, events RSS doesn't work that way.

Are they a chain?

Feb 2, 2016, 4:03pm Top

>105 timspalding: I don't think so. I've never seen the name before, and the store info page mentions only one location (in Rotterdam).

Feb 2, 2016, 4:18pm Top

Yeah, it's too small for a one-off parser, then. It has to be entered manually or not at all.

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