Posts tagged libraries
Posts tagged libraries
Librarians with a particular interest in readers’ advisory are cordially invited to join a group of like-minded folk at Darien Library on Friday, May 16, 2014, for the Library’s first annual RA Unconference. Or, as we’ve been calling it, RAUNCON. (Pronounced RON-CON.) Darien Library is sponsoring is sponsoring this unconference, so registration is free, as is lunch that day. There are 80 spots for interested librarians. The schedule can be found here.
So happy to finally be announcing our first-ever RA unconference!
RAUNCON RAUNCON RAUNCON! Please note that this may be the first conference you’ve attended with scheduled sustained silent reading time.
I came across this image in the Twitter feed of my friend Matt Finch, currently conducting amazing library programming in rural New South Wales. Kudos to The Bookseller (the leading publishing news publication in the UK) for getting behind public libraries, which are nearing extinction across the Pond.
It’s truly an emergency situation that won’t be solved by tweeting or tumbling alone, but it can’t be a bad thing for the UK publishing industry (including the shrinking number of indie bookstores) to pressure the government collectively to see its mistake. Whether that is actually happening is unclear from this cover; I’ll be making inquiries.
I have long thought launching ebook lending there in earnest could be a way to revitalize the dowdy image of UK public libraries. How they are perceived by English people is so different from how most Americans see theirs, I can’t begin to tell you.
Some good news: UK publishers are starting ebook lending pilots imminently. That is step one to what I hope will be a new day.
- Are you launching a new ebook service and looking for ways to get started on the right foot?
- Do you want your existing ebook collection to have the same vibrancy and staff support as your print collection?
- Frustrated by the different levels of ebook usage and knowledge among your Library users?
- Looking for ways to recommend ebook titles to users who aren’t in the Library building?
Ebooks are increasingly in demand, and libraries may experience a gap between their users’ needs and their ebook services. A combination of marketing, tech support, and readers’ advisory can fill this gap.
On February 5th, I am presenting a webinar on Ebook Merchandising. First, I would like to invite all you fine tumblarians to attend. Second, I would like to invite you to show off a little. Has your library been experimenting with ebook merchandising? Proud of some great ebook RA or tech classes you’ve worked up? I want to share your genius with the world. Drop a link or a note in my ask box and let me know, especially if you’ve got pictures/screenshots. I’m finishing up my slides and want to showcase as many libraries as I can as examples.
Henry Rollins (via zibazehdar)
Good news, Henry: there are 16,724 public library buildings in America, and, according to Hoover’s, only 10,967 Starbucks. YOUR WORLD IS NOW. HOORAY!
There are a few things in this article that I disagree with, but it’s these three paragraphs that are at the crux of it. There’s an abrupt segue here where collection development is suddenly equated to readers’ advisory, and I am not okay with that, because that assumption forms the basis for much of the rest of the article. Buying a lot of copies of something can be a way to suggest a book—but that does not mean that it does.
I’d argue that, when it comes to the finite book budgets of libraries across the nation, good collection development is occasionally at loggerheads with good readers’ advisory, and this is one of those times. Good collection development involves being responsive to the requests of the community, whatever you or any other interested observer thinks of the legitimacy of those requests. Good readers’ advisory involves being well-read, keeping recommended books in the library, and, incidentally, answering the question “what should I read next?” not just with a book handed across the counter, but with a conversation and a list of titles that very probably are not related to the librarian’s personal reading habits.
When a situation like this leads to a tie, in the sense that you’ve got X dollars and you have to figure out the best way to spend it, my feeling is that the tie should go to the patron. It’s not our money. It’s their money, and we are the stewards of it. When I see people say, “Well, I wouldn’t spend $23k that way,” I feel they’re missing the point. Personally, if I had $23k to spend on books, I’d buy 23,000 copies of Stoner by John Williams and use them to construct a small hut in the middle of the Library, where I would take power naps throughout the day, and occasionally throw a dance party. But I don’t have that money; the Library does, and it was given to us by our patrons, who as a result ought to have some say in how it is spent.
We are trusted to spend that money on books that we have professionally evaluated and decided should be in the collection, but we are also trusted to provide items that people are asking for. If demand is high enough for a book that in a system of over half a million cardholders, 300 ebooks are needed to meet it, then that’s where the rubber meets the road in the library business, as my boss would say.
I appreciate that this attitude resonates with Greenfield, but it does more than resonate with me—it is my attitude, and it is how I do my job. (Not just because I actually believe it, by the way, though I do—but also because the collection development policy of my workplace requires it.) Ebooks being accessible in public libraries is a complex issue. There are many ways to improve it, and I agree that libraries will need to change a few things in the process, but it’s beyond the reach of very simple advice.
I’m packing for VLA in Williamsburg and look what I’m bringing with me… 45 more of these are in my purse waiting for new owners, so say hi to me tomorrow!
Tumblrarians, what a great idea. Can you take your state motto or logo and turn it into a library campaign slogan?
Oh heck yeah:
Our libraries we prize and our rights we will maintain! (Go Iowa!)
By her own libraries she flies! (Okay, Oregon’s not so much)
love this so much.
NJ, Libraries & You: Perfect together!
Illinois “Library Sovereignty, Library Unity.”
Colorado “Nothing without the Library.”
New York’s state motto is Excelsior or Ever Upward, so: Ever Libraries!
Or we could just say Excelsior, which is the sort of thing your average librarian dreams of having an excuse to drop in conversation, I think.
As for my home state of PA: Libraries, liberty, and independence.
Marketing trick I want to steal: my vet took this picture of my kitty at his last visit. (He doesn’t normally look this sad, he just really hates the vet.) They made it into a postcard and the back is a reminder that he is due for a checkup, which they are pretending he wrote. Obviously he could not have written it because he only knows how to write in Russian, but it is basically a cat lady’s dream to get a postcard signed with love from her cat.
Anyway, joke’s on them, because instead of making a vet appointment I am brainstorming how I can use this technique for library marketing! So there, vet!
A father and his daughter came in today for the second time; she was shy. They had a question. It turned out the school librarian had assigned extra credit.
"She needs to take a picture with a librarian at a public library," he said. And then what, I asked.
"I get two cookies!" she said.
TWO! I vaulted the desk. This must be what it feels like to be famous.
I pretty consistently preach about the importance of visiting other libraries. When I visited Darien Library in Connecticut, I picked up a few really wonderful ideas but this might be the best - the Librarian Favorite bookmark. Patrons LOVE them. L.O.V.E. Library workers also love them because it’s a fun way to personalize displays. It’s a win-win.
You can see Darien’s version in a copy of The Love Song of Jonny Valentine and our version at the Northbrook Public Library, in a copy of Matterhorn. (that’s right…that book is AMAZING!!)
This is one of the smallest things we’ve done at Darien but it has had a huge impact. Very easy to make, even easier to use. If I might offer a word of advice: make them on perforated bookmark paper! Ours have been so popular that I recently invested in a few reams of it on which to print them out, because we were wasting a crazy amount of time cutting them out and it was giving everyone hand cramps. I mean, it was a good reason for hand cramps, but still.