Saturday, 3 October 2009

Post of the week - on Libraries.

I don't normally do a posting about the Blog post that has most impressed me during the week but I had to direct folk to Lisa's 'rant' about libraries this week.

As long-term readers of this blog will know there were threats earlier this year to close down my local library. Fortunately the populace went berserk and the local authority backed off but they are stll closing half a dozen other libraries in the area.

In the meantime, over in the US, a prep school is getting rid of all its books and having a totally digital library. (This is, of course, an impossibility since the word library comes from the Latin Liber meaning book and is defined as a 'A place set apart to contain books for reading, study or reference'. They are therefore not creating a digital library they are totally doing away with a their library.)

Lisa, a graduate student in Library and Information Studies through the University of Wisconsin-Madison, gave her views on the subject. It is well worth a read.

I commented - "As an ex-librarian I loved this post and do so agree. The difference between getting information from a real, live person rather than from Google is immeasurably better. This summer, while staying with my brother, I used his local library to find out about a 19th century local man. There was nothing on the web but the librarian found lots about him for me. Even apart from the need for the libraries (and there was a big fuss locally when they tried to close ours down this year) I just cannot imagine a world without books. How much of what I have learned over the years has been by serendipity - coming across something on the page next to the one with the direct information on; or the adjacent book; or a reference in the back of a book. And what about my night-time read in bed - holding a laptop surely could never be as cosy as turning the pages of my book... Please keep up the good work - there will always be folk to support you and who appreciate your efforts."



  1. We still have a library but books are fast taking second place to computer terminals and DVDs. Pity used the library a lot when I was home. thats how cum i is litrate.

  2. A world without books? No freaking way! I love the "feel" of them, grasping them close to my chest, selfishly anticipating my world within them!

  3. Oh my. Don't get me started about libraries. We had a good one. Over 100 years of amazing books, archive, reference. Poof! Gone overnight with amalgamation. One nice librarian gave me boxes of gems, "only you would appreciate these," she said. It broke my heart to see what she was throwing out.

  4. You're right. What a sad state of affairs. I've always loved the libraries. Currently our local library is closed for remodeling, and several others in the area have been forced to close their doors on certain days of the week as a cost cutting measure. Sounds like foolish economy to me!
    Canadian Chickadee

  5. Librarians are dinosaurs. I can see us dying out within the next few years...:(


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