Technology and Other Stuff

Access right in the palm of our hands. Knowledge at our fingertips. Everything you want and need without ever having to wait. People are now used to instantaneously having everything they want and need. We don’t have to go anywhere to get everything we want. We can have groceries or food delivered to us in less time than it takes to cook or go out. We do not have to go to the store to shop for clothes, shoes or anything else. We can even get it shipped for free. We now live in a world where people never really have to do very many things that they do not want to do. This is our reality. How do libraries adjust to this new, ever evolving reality? What is it that they can offer people that they can’t already have?
It is obvious to us who work in libraries. We are a safe space. We cultivate community in ways other entities cannot. We offer free access to accurate, reliable and true information. We support early childhood literacy and lifelong learning opportunities. We do fun things where people can interact face to face in real life. We are everything that technology is not. Sometimes you have to wait. You have to get up and leave the house to come visit us, although not always with virtual reference. Libraries do offer many new cutting edge services, but we are so much more than that. We can offer people those cutting edge services and the opportunity to slow down and experience life, community and everything in between. And fines still suck.

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1 Comment

  1. LOL! Indeed, fines do! I would add to your thought about virtual reference: people can also get streaming video and music from libraries. The content, however, does not seem to be as good as the Netflixes and Hulus out there.

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