Monthly Archives: May 2010

We Surf the Internet, We Live (and Thrive!) in Libraries

Here is a great blog post summarizing the new ad campaign being run.  I’m not entirely sure who is behind it – magazines, magazine advertisers, but it’s pretty amazing:

Here is the text of the magazine ad (you can see the actual ad by checking the above link):

The Internet is exhilarating.  Magazines are enveloping.  The internet grabs you.  Magazines embrace you.  The Internet is impulsive.  Magazines are immersive.  And both media are growing.

Barely noticed amidst the thunderous Internet clamor is the simple fact that magazine readership has risen over the past five years.  Even in the age of the Internet, even among the groups one would assume are most singularly hooked on digital media, the appeal of magazines is growing.

Think of it this way: during the 12-year life of Google, magazine readership actually increased 11 percent.

What it proves, once again, is that a new medium doesn’t necessarily displace an existing one.  Just as movies didn’t kill radio.  Just as TV didn’t kill movies.  An established medium can continue to flourish so long as it continues to offer a unique experience.  And, as reader loyalty and growth demonstrate, magazines do.

Which is why people aren’t giving up swimming, just because they also enjoy surfing.

Librarians – if we were to come up with an ad campaign somewhat like this, what would we say?  What makes us better, different, improved compared to competition or supposed competition?  Our ad campaign would mention that library card sign ups have gone up as high as 20% in some regions of the country. 

The best line of all: ” An established medium can continue to flourish so long as it continues to offer a unique experience.”  How have magazines continued to create a unique experience?  By building strong web presences in addition to print.  By linking web content and print content. 

Even up until last year, many major magazines were failing.  And now they’ve taken this positive spin and made a statement that says “We are here, we are not leaving, we’re getting back on our feet.”

What should/would/could we say?  Talk to me!  I want to hear our new ad campaign for libraries!

Oh Listservs, I Love/Hate You…

An excerpt from Outlook:

In all fairness, that’s about eight months worth of messages based on membership to about ten listservs.  I have filters set up so the topics I’m most interested in go directly to my Inbox.  But I keep hoping I’ll catch up someday and read all the emails and savor the intellectual amazingness of my peers.

I’m declaring listserv bankruptcy and starting over!

Patron Privacy and the Library Copy Machine

A friend sent me this video recently:

It’s a CBS report about how information is stored on copy machines and how that information can be accessed when the wrong people get a hold of your copy machine.

They found medical records, police reports, and more on the copiers they examined.

If patron privacy is a concern for you, then you need to look into ensuring your copy machine hard drive is wiped clean or that your library purchases the document deletion technologies that are available.

Real Live Librarian Interview!!!

It’s time for…a real live librarian interview!!!!  Where I do a brief interview with a real live librarian doing interesting stuff!  Yaaaaay!

This interview is with Holly Hibner, Adult Services Coordinator at the Plymouth District Library in Plymouth, Michigan.  Holly is co-author of the blog Awful Library Books (with the very awesome Mary Kelly), has appeared on Jimmy Kimmel Live and is the co-author of a collection development book due out this summer (with Mary Kelly!).  She’s also been a library unconference coordinator with yours truly and is a big fan of all things beer.

The Best…answers by Holly Hibner…

Best…blog/publication related to the profession (other than your own…)

I love Michael Stephens’ Tame the Web blog. It combines everything I love about libraries and technology in a very practical delivery.

Best…conference to attend if you can only afford to go to one this year…
I went to the PLA conference for the first time ever this year.  Wow – it was awesome!  Everything was so relevant, and the speakers were dynamic.

Best…awful library book…

I have to be loyal to my boyfriend Dee Snider, so I’ll go with Dee Snider’s Teenage Survival Guide.  Just kidding, I’ve never actually met Dee Snider.  It’s always fun to show the world that librarians are far from boring people, though, and I do listen to some heavy metal music.  If we could upgrade to “David Draiman’s Teenage Survival Guide,” I’d buy it. (Until Disturbed becomes outdated, and then we upgrade again.  You get the idea.)

Best…beer (okay, you can name more than one…)
Thank goodness!  I mean, to name just one?  I have a favorite style: Belgian.  Well, that’s really a combination of styles.  Triples, for example.  My favorite triple is La Fin Du Monde.  I love a good amber ale, too.  Bell’s Amber is excellent.  Arbor Brewing Company, a local favorite, makes a fantastic altbier called Olde Number 22.

Best…project you’re currently working on (or completed recently)

I made a very impressive, if I do say so myself, Adult Services training manual.  I went to a PLA session about retaining institutional knowledge, so I’m on a mission to formalize some of the things that long-time employees “just know” – but many of us don’t.  We need to track why things are the way they are and how they got that way so that we can continue to expand and improve on them – without repeating mistakes of the past.  It worries me when only one staff person knows how to do something.  You need a “firey crash scenario!”  That’s a morbid way to put it, but if they leave the institution for any reason, what knowledge will leave with them?  The manual will eventually end up in wiki format (probably) so it can be updated and used freely and easily by all staff members.