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Friday, December 3, 2010

Will we still need libraries?

Posted by Deanne H.

I have worked in a public library for the last 34 - almost 35 years.  It has been, and continues to be, an amazingly rewarding job.  One comment that seems to recur with some consistency is:  "Well, we need libraries right now, but will we in the future - 5, 10, 20 years from now?"   My firm reply is always "yes, we'll be right here."  We will change as we have certainly changed dramatically over the last years, decades, millennia.  This year, many of our patrons need us for computer access. We offer free access to the internet, word processing, and social networking.  Our library also offers access to a wide range of online information.  This access is available literally anywhere you are, as long as you have access to our website. Most library collections no longer consist of print items only - we have cd's, dvd's, downloadable audio and electronic books, books on a Playaway. Our library patrons consistently tell us what they'd like us to purchase (we love that!) so we constantly update and upgrade our collection.  However, unlike your local bookstore, the library also archives and provides access to older print materials.  If you are looking for that picture book that you loved as a child and want to share it with your children - ask us, we either still own it or can borrow it from another library.  If you want to see your mom's senior photo in an Edwardsville High School yearbook - come on in, we'll let you see it. We also have meeting rooms, a coffee shop, great deals on gently used books, new magazines and newspapers, and comfy chairs to read, study, or visit with a friend.

Visit the link below to find 33!! reasons why libraries and librarians are definitely NOT obsolete. But most importantly, visit us, we are ready to amaze and delight you.

For an updated commentary by Deanne, visit her most recent post about libraries and the future.

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