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What's the point of a library in the digital age? It's a question that makes librarians bristle. They are quick to remind you that they are not just repositories for printed books and DVDs. Regular patrons know this, but public libraries want to reach beyond the faithful. To that end, many librarians are finding creative ways to get people through the doors despite their limited resources.
This article made me think. What can we learn from Netflix about the changes in their business from physical DVD distribution to streaming media distribution? This is a pretty good metaphor for the transition libraries are facing.
So this article made me think about the following questions...
NPR is just bringing out the library related stories left and right. Yesterday was the bicycle story that Birdie posted and today we have another.
Excerpt: And it's not just New Yorkers. Across the country, in places like Louisiana and Oklahoma, libraries have served as crucial hubs for information and help in the aftermath of hurricanes and tornadoes. And federal emergency planners have noticed. "The Federal Emergency Management Agency classified libraries as an essential service — like one of the things that would get early funding so that communities could recover," says Jessamyn West a librarian in Vermont and a moderator of the popular blog, Metafilter.
NPR piece about Carnegie and libraries. The end of this piece has this line - How do you use your local public library? Please tell us in the comments below.
Librarians may have an interest in viewing the NPR comments to see what the response is.
The Story Behind Ten Tiny Libraries That Popped Up in NYC This Summer
This summer, ten small libraries mysteriously appeared throughout New York City's Lower East Side and East Village. But who paid for them? Who designed them? And what was the point? In a short film published today, the creators finally answer our many questions about how the Little Free Library came to be.
Perhaps the best thing we can do, in planning for onsite library computing today, is to aim for maximum flexibility. Students may express a demand for desktops today, but it’s hard to imagine that will be our future. When we gaze out upon our fields of computers we should, in our mind’s eye, envisions it as a room that holds nothing but an enormous, as far-as-the-eye-can see card catalog. Because, ultimately, as the next generations of students make it to our doors, it is less likely they will expect us to provide them with computers, and it may be that they would consider such amenities laughable and a waste of their tuition dollars. It is a bit premature perhaps, but not unreasonable, for us to begin thinking about how we will use all the space currently devoted to desktop and laptop-loan computers. My crystal ball is less clear on this matter, although I suspect we can always improve things by expanding the café.
Pop-Up Library Serves The Needs Of Book Worms On The Beach
Beaches are usually loaded with ice cream stands, bars for cold drinks and parasol rental services, but buying or renting a book on the beach can be though. To fill this gap, French architect Matali Crasset came up with this pop-up beach library. The simple structure, that consists of tarpaulin draped over a steel frame, offers beach-goers a collection of over 350 books that are selected by Crasset herself.
Hoopla wants to be a free Netflix for library users:
Hoopla, a new streaming service for libraries, lets patrons borrow digital movies, TV shows, audiobooks and music. The selection isn’t comparable to Netflix, but it is free if you have a card at participating library. Hoopla is based in Holland, Ohio, and is owned by library distributor Midwest Tape.
Article at Omaha.com written by Gary Wasdin (executive director of the Omaha Public Library)
I think librarians in other cities will find this article interesting. How does your per capita cost compare?