Friday, October 23, 2015

They're for Books, Not Baby-Sitting (Libraries say), And Not for Toys (Users say)

  • They're for Books, Not Baby-Sitting, Libraries Say, LATimes
  •  Reinventing the Library  "Librarians today are forced to take on a variety of functions that their society is too miserly or contemptuous to fulfill, and the use of their scant resources to meet those essential social obligations diminishes their funds for buying new books and other materials. But a library is not a homeless shelter (at the St. Agnes library in New York, I witnessed a librarian explaining to a customer why she could not sleep on the floor), a nursery or a fun fair (the Seneca East Public Library in Attica, Ohio, offers pajama parties), or a prime provider of social support and medical care (which American librarians today nonetheless routinely give)."
  • La Jolla library opens biotech lab: A comment reads: "I don't see the point. A niche market wants to be popular. How often will I need to copy DNA?"
  • I'd had it. The toys weren't just annoying to me, but they were hazardous to my kid's health.
    I called my library branch to ask them why on earth they lumped those unkempt virus-hosting toys with all the magnificent books. I half-expected to get a nodding librarian on the other end, lamenting the end of childhood imagination and cursing the downfall of humanity as we know it. Instead, I was told this was "a new trend in libraries," and that in my city, upwards of 14 institutions now have similar "play spaces." Why Are Books Now Taking a Back Seat to Toys at the Local Library?
  • People love public libraries, but they aren’t using them
  • The American Heart Association/American Stroke Association’s Tips for Daily Living Volunteer- Powered Library is not intended to provide medical advice or treatment. Only your healthcare provider can provide that.
    The American Heart Association/American Stroke Association’s Tips for Daily Living Volunteer-
    Powered Library is not intended to provide medical advice or treatment. Only your healthcare
    provider can provide that.
  • Never underestimate my ability to find shit out. I'm a librarian. SOMEECARDS.COM
  • “If librarians were honest, they would say, No one spends time here without being changed…” Brain Pickings
  • pBooks, eBooks, & dBooks: why we are hooked on books and bookness
  • "Our libraries (Hants) are internet enabled so you can reserve/renew etc at any time from home. I find that makes them really attractive. Reserve the book you want and then pick it up when it is available. At Gosport the library has been extended to become a "Discovery Centre" so it is a mixture of libary, museum and exhibition centre." Mark Frank said... @ DONALD CLARK Libraries - in terminal decline
  • "Obscuring the true purpose of libraries through meaningless labels like ‘idea stores’ and diversifying their functions may shore up visitor levels, but it shows a condescending cynicism on the part of those in power. All of a sudden we are being thought of as too busy or unintelligent to bother with a book. And that would be a true tragedy." Battle in Print: "Books should remain the essence of public libraries" Andrew Wheelhouse vs. Kiranjeet Kaur Gill
  • A Commnet by iwakar "I cringe every time I read references about librarianship service desks as "anything to do with Apple retail stores." ALA Mag in "Transforming the Library Profession Recruiting librarianship's best and brightest"
  • As Stoffle, Leeder, and Sykes-Casavant encourage, “If we can give up our traditional understandings of library work and collaborate with others to take action, we will see transformation that makes our work more efficient and increases our value to the higher educational institutions we serve.” What Do We Do Now? A Case for Abandoning Yesterday and Making the Future
  • Books are only one aspect of what libraries and librarians are about. Librarianship is a people profession; a librarian's job is to connect people with the information they are seeking, whatever format that may take. At their heart, all library jobs have a central purpose: to help people access and use information, for education, for work, or for pleasure. In all library roles customer service and communication skills are important. If anyone ever thought they'd become a librarian because they liked books or reading, they would be sorely disappointed if they did not also like people too. in "Beyond books: what it takes to be a 21st century librarian"
  • "It’s one thing to adapt public libraries to community changes is there’s no longer a need for quiet spaces for reading or contemplation, although I doubt that need ever goes away. It’s another to think of college libraries as something other than quiet places for study. It’s possible that the students have no quiet places at home or work, and most public spaces are noisy." The Library is Not for Studying
  • "And finally (@singlesoliloquy) a #library is NOT: a classroom, a cafe, or a parking lot, although all can usefully be attached to one!" A LIBRARY IS NOT…
  • "Before putting too much credence into the thoughts of Sari Feldman, the Cuyahoga County Public Library constituents should be polled.  Recently i received an email from the library telling me that the loan period had to be shortened from three weeks to two because they did not have the budget for buying books that they used to have.  Our system has been raided for "recording studios" but we have no books on recording.  The county already has recording studios in the community colleges.  Ms. Feldman has achieved her goal of raising her profile but has damaged our library system which will never pass a levy again because of the discord she has sown.  Just a word of warning to those whose boots are here on the ground." a comment by Mark Friedlander in '9 surprising things you can find at the library,' By Silvia Ascarelli 

  • "It's sad to see public libraries throwing away as many books as they buy, just to maintain a physical collection in a limited space. I would rather see libraries make a total commitment to digital formats, so that every book that could be checked out would be a download. The physical collection would be one-of-a-kind local and historical works. Libraries could once again be places where scholars would travel to for special research. For the rest of us, they would be a protected reading space." A comment by agore in "As Books Disappear, Libraries Are Still Transforming the World"
  • "Public libraries are currently under attack as never before. Quite apart from the imperatives of cutting council spending, many critics question the point of public libraries. With the advent of the internet and the ebook, public libraries are described as out-dated. They are also accused of being too Middle Class and of being a luxury we cannot afford when other services are facing financial pressure. This page aims to address some of these points and to highlight the main purposes that libraries exist to provide." in Reasons for Public Libraries
  • "Within the digital media lab Youth Technology Librarian Catherine Halpin supports teens and organises workshops on music making, 3D modelling, video editing, programming, photoshop and graphic design. Workshops are often provided by community partners. Technology Librarians need to know enough to get people started but don’t need to be experts." Travelling Librarian 2015 - source: here and here
    "The big takeaways I got from this excellent report were as follows:


  • The emphasis (in US Libraries) is now very much on programming rather than stock.
  • Every library’s community is different, engaging with communities and meeting the needs of individual communities is vital, there is no one size fits all when it comes to programming" -- source: http://justinthelibrarian.com


  • "Sometimes I wonder if Librarians are what's killing public Libraries. Or rater what killed them. From my point of view, as a modern public Library manager, a focus on fusty old books (the Librarian hoarders paradise) and 'Information' (what time is the bus to) is somewhat missing the point and holding public Libraries back from what they need to become, the front line of the local authority and a bustling community resource."
    "Speaking to staff at my local library their main gripe is not cuts but being used as unpaid child minders by the local.... community who dump their children at the library for between seven and ten hours a day, six days a week. That and staff and service users being verbally abused by older ... teenagers"
    "The question about the future direction (or even existence) of libraries is largely due to the creation of the profession known as the "library administrator." These people are not librarians; they are administrators and may be ok at administrating a computer network, but not much good at caring for printed materials. Nicholson Baker's book, Double Fold, illustrates the problem."
    "IMHO if public libraries are to continue to exist, they will need to find ways to continue the roll out of the internet ebook lending mechanism, which seems to have stalled for several years. There also needs to be a major reform in the way that books are selected for procurement, to avoid shelves full of books that people don't want."Reader's comments, source: Who would be a librarian now? You know what, I'll have a go, Guardian News
  • "A library in Michigan lends out power tools and measuring tapes. In Rhode Island, fishing rods are on offer. Harvard Library offers members a chance to sign up for timeslots with a Shih Tzu — for those times you really need snuggles but don’t want to deal with a pet of your own. And at Philly’s McPherson Square Branch in Kensington, there’s a whole collection of cake pans you can borrow to add more fun to home baking sessions. It’s the sharing economy, on a public service level." Read more 'Way beyond books' in Philly’s Paschalville Library has a new collection: Neckties
  • Says Lauren Smith "I really don't like to try to be a futurist, but I think the future for public libraries as things stand is a decimated and de-professionalised service with patchwork levels of provision across the country," in Libraries: The decline of a profession? @ bbc.com
  • Patrons are expected to be actively engaged in a library service or event. Loitering or sleeping is not permitted on Library premises. Loitering is defined as sitting or standing idly about; lingering aimlessly without using library services, regular and/or prolonged attendance at the library without using library services. Kingston Frontenac Public Library, (New) Patron Code of Conduct
  • "Many science activities and materials are easy to incorporate into library programs; you may find that you’re already including elements that increase STEM (science, technology, engineering, and mathematics) knowledge, for example, talking about color mixing or identifying and playing with shapes." Preschool STEM Lab | Field Reports, Library Journal
  • "Public libraries across the country are housing so-called “libraries of things,” from which people can borrow useful items for a short time instead of buying them outright. This is a largely hidden feature of the growing “sharing economy,” but it may be poised to take off as many Americans become increasingly concerned about waste and environmental sustainability. " How Libraries — Yes, Libraries — Are Helping People Ditch Stuff They Don’t Need
  • "I want students to view our libraries as places where they want to be. I like the idea of them coming in, checking out a video for pleasure, and watching it on their computer while they exercise for an hour. If they enjoy being at the library for reasons other than academics, maybe they will be more comfortable visiting the library—and approaching librarians—in the future." Sweating in the Stacks, University library offers exercise bikes for student use American Libraries Magazine
  • “People still associate libraries with quiet places to check out a book, but we’re so much more than that.” Sharp Dressed, Well Read: This Philly Library Lets Job Hunters Borrow Ties, The ‘tiebrary’ provides residents with a cravat for the all-important interview.
  • What next for a library thinking outside the box? Well, the library already lends out museum passes and the like, works of art, and e-books, plus the books and other material typically associated with library lending. And in the future, who knows? Maybe bike locks for people who ride to the library and don’t have a lock, and maybe fishing poles when the new Founder’s Walk is constructed along the harbor area outside the library. Milford Library will loan out American Girl dolls Books, videos, e-books, etc., and now …
  • Susan's actual job title is "crisis worker," not because there's always a loud crisis in the library, but because she's not meant to be a long-term case worker. She refers clients to other service providers and follows up with them to make sure they have what they need. Central Library brings a social worker on board (Column)
  • The newest library on campus contains no books and offers no borrowing privileges. Located in the basement of Stocking Hall, it lacks the soaring windows and grand views of other locations. Students can’t access the library, and since it’s kept at a constant 54 degrees, it would not offer much of a study refuge anyway. New library shelves 3,400 bottles of wine -- Cornell Chronicle
  • First it was books, then CDs and videos. Now, people can borrow star-gazing gear from the Confederation Public Library in Charlottetown. A six-inch Dobsonian reflecting telescope is now available for one-week loans. P.E.I.'s library telescope in high demand
  • Liz Vezina, a librarian at Cushing for 17 years, told the Globe she never imagined working as the director of a library without any books. (She hosts a book club on campus called the Off-line Readers.) And Alexander Coyle, chairman of the history department, said, "A lot us are wondering how this changes the dignity of the library, and why we can't move to increase digital resources while keeping the books." E-Shocker: Prep School Library Goes All Digital, Shelf Awareness
  • There are no books in this library. Instead it's jammed with high-end technology that it provides free to the public. In Omaha, A Library With No Books Brings Technology To All NPR.org
    Comments:
    Nola Aycock: sounds more like a makerspace than a library to me. I mean, no books? not even books about computers? Makerspaces are great, and coexist well with libraries, but I wouldn't call a makerspace a library.
    John Kissinger: ... The only reason that they are calling it a library is that can't figure out what to call it. Then you can rave about how much better it is than any library. We're it on a college campus it probably would be called a computer lab. Technology is a very easy sell to philanthropists who have no idea what it's for.
    John Kissinger: I wonder who the first person was who used the term "maker space" Probably related to the same person who came up with "information common". It is rather funny how some people have been bending over backwards Over the years to find sexy new terms to replace the word "library". Then you read this article and laugh at how it's using the word.
  • Increasingly, that means helping people to help themselves, whether through a multi-media center that provides access to video and audio recording software, a makerspace with 3D printers and digital design tools, portable wi-fi hotspots, or membership in a toy, tool, or seed library, the idea is to create spaces that provide access to information and resources of all kinds.
    “There’s a lot of out of the box thinking about how community members and library users can help design spaces that are more accessible,” says Fiels, “and an understanding that this is something that’s going to evolve on an ongoing basis. What we’re starting to see is a whole generation of libraries that look very different and act very different from traditional libraries.” The Future of Libraries Is Bigger Than Books
  • 'Former NYT restaurant critic Mimi Sheraton thinks allowing food at the "laptop bar" in the NYPL's new 53rd Street branch is a terrible idea.' "As intriguing and promising as the changes to the 53rd Street Library are, allowing food at its “laptop bar” is a terrible mistake. It will become intrusively noisy, what with papers, foil and cans being opened." Re “After an 8-Year Wait, a New York Library Like No Other Opens” No Food in the Library
  • So school libraries across the country are cutting back on book storage and finding new ways to use the space. Taking the lead of community libraries, many have incorporated “maker spaces” or “innovation stations” that enable children to create, work in teams and learn at the same time. School libraries shift toward innovation areas, but librarians fear for what’s lost
  • "In Queens, which has a large South Asian population, a library in Jamaica offers sewing classes in Bengali for Bangladeshi women, some of whom now earn a living as seamstresses.
    Nationally, public libraries are redefining their mission at a time when access to technology, and the ability to use it, is said to deepen class stratification, leaving many poor and disadvantaged communities behind. Sari Feldman, president of the American Library Association, said library workers had shown people how to file online for welfare benefits and taught classes in science, technology, engineering and math to children who could not afford to go to summer camps." Adding Classes and Content, Resurgent Libraries Turn a Whisper Into a Roar
  • "Rather than just linger on as an eccentricity from a bygone age, though, the surviving Czech libraries are doing what they can to stay vibrant and relevant. They serve as polling places for elections and as local meeting venues. They organize reading clubs and art exhibits and offer computer literacy courses, and they welcome droves of schoolchildren and retirees during the day." Why Libraries Are Everywhere in the Czech Republic
  • "As we walk the first floor, Munoz sees an elderly man in a dirt-stained Golden State Warriors jacket sitting in a chair, his head slumped awkwardly forward. Munoz knocks on the wall just above him. The man’s eyes snap open. “Sir, you can’t sleep in the library,” Munoz says, polite but firm. Munoz asks if he can help with anything — a place to get a meal, somewhere to sleep. The man shakes his head, staring ahead blankly. Munoz leaves him in peace. In this job, he says, it’s important to know when to push and when to back off." Being a librarian now means also being at least a part-time social worker At San Francisco’s main branch, a balance of outreach and keeping a lookout
  • A library in Prospect Heights, Brooklyn, runs a fully equipped recording studio that can be reserved at no cost; many libraries in the borough lend laptops and portable wireless devices to those without internet access at home. Adding Classes and Content, Resurgent Libraries Turn a Whisper Into a Roar
  • Many businesses and other institutions are trying to cash in on the craze; some libraries have already joined them. Should yours? There is a balance to be struck, but if we can draw in more visitors without being disruptive, it may be time for us to GO. Libraries must decide if they have appropriate spaces and resources to manage the traffic that might come with allowing game play. Don’t Go There: Are Libraries Appropriate Places to Catch Pokémon?
  • What is your library’s purpose? Is it to check out books? Is it to be a jobs program? Is it to be publicly subsidized recreation for people who don’t want to play sports? Is it to provide a spectacle so people can come and see what crazy thing is happening at the library this week? Libraries are ideally positioned, both physically and virtually, to make a great impact on nearly every community in this country. The question is what does your community need, and how can your library behave in a purposeful way to help achieve that community vision? The Purpose-Based Library: Finding your path to survival, success, and growth
  • [Comment from readers: focus to motivate reading? No window shopping for book lovers? tourist attraction?] These fancy, futuristic public libraries rank among the world’s best
  • "British Columbia Institute of Technology (BCIT)'s media relations coordinator, slides the door on a new sleep pod installed at the institution's library. According to the library's director, the units are similar to those found at Facebook's offices in London. " Napping in the library a lot more comfortable at BCIT with new sleep pods
  • Other spaces have expanded the traditional definition of what a library is, and the role it plays in educating and assisting its community. Beyond book borrowing and after school programs, Hillary Rodham Clinton’s Library and Learning Center in Little Rock, Arkansas offers a teaching kitchen, greenhouse, vegetable garden, arboretum and a performance space. 'Multiuse Spaces and Services' in The Future of Public Libraries: Emerging Trends
  • A scene of homeless misery greets patrons trying to use Santa Ana's award-winning library

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