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the.effing.librarian gets a mention in The Washington Post

John Kelly, the Metro Columnist for The Washington Post, wrote, "Due Date Stamps, A Thing of the Past?" (first mentioned on LISNews here) and I emailed him my thoughts on date stamps, library fines and Google:

no, the plot is to accelerate senility by outsourcing your memory to a computer. the old date stamp sparked thought as you wondered who had the book last or why there was a nine year gap between those last two borrowers. the date stamp was a link to history. but a paper receipt, or even no receipt, is just more crap to find a place for because it doesn't belong anywhere; the receipt doesn't even make a good bookmark, it's so small and flimsy.

no, it's actually to give Google unlimited power. because you won't remember your PIN or even the library web address. so you'll google it. "when are my library books due back?" and Google will show you ads for Amazon's Kindle and the University of Phoenix online degree program. and you'll wonder if you'd be happier as a computer technician. and then you'll end up on Hulu watching Family Guy and never ever read that book.

no, we're not making any extra money from extra fines. stop looking at my iPhone.

And John was nice enough to add most of my email to his follow-up column, "Okay, So End of Library Stamps Isn't the End of the World." My stuff is on page 2. Check it out.

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The 1 thing I really liked about stamping the date due sticker...was that when I went to weed my collection, I could tell how many times as well as the last time an item went out. It made some things so much easier.

The receipts, are new for us, we argue a bit over due dates now as well as renewal dates, the receipts are just another piece of paper, and they do get lost..not to mention you can not use a felt tipped pen or even a highlighter on them...for they are chemical papers, and if you decide to highlight the due dates, well after a few hours it turns BLACK, and you cant see a thing.

Of course it is easier for the staff to just hand you a computer generated receipt, but it's still not easier to figure out when your items are due...Sorry about that! I guess you could always log onto the internet and check your account there for the due date of your materials...and if need be renew them (that is, if they are not already late). But we are taking steps to help prevent that as well, we will now send you an e-mail notice 3 days prior to the due date, so that you can either renew or return you materials on time.


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