The story about a Wisconsin library loaning out iPads has been reported on a couple of different blogs. Here it is on Library Stuff with embedded video from the library’s local news. But what I want to direct you to is the comment thread following the Consumerist story. Granted, those commenting aren’t local patrons of that specific library, but their comments still provide an interesting perspective of what library users think of the program. Which leads me to wonder, is there a difference between tailoring services to what patrons need and tailoring services to what patrons think about the library’s services?
Thanks for clearing that up, Jeph, because serendipitous employment at the library has become something of a recurring theme (often, NSFW) in webcomics. Walking, talking, AI computers that hang out with your friends while seeking gainful employment? Totally plausible. Library managers having open positions lying around to hand out to friends at will? Absolutely batsh*t crazy.
I inquired of the HR dept. at one of the local library systems (not the one I volunteer for) about applications I’d submitted for a couple of entry-level, SUBSTITUTE, ON-CALL positions. I was told they received over TWO HUNDRED applications for each one.
Where does this idea come from that somebody can just walk into the library and get a job, even if they did get their Masters degree first? Does it come from the fact that the library really is a good place to go when you’re out of work, for help with resumes, filing for unemployment, finding services, etc.? Or is it because libraries are doing such a good job at publicizing how much they’re doing with so little that the public only really sees the “how much” and somehow misses the “so little?” It could just be one more instance of the public (the writers, in this case) not really knowing much of anything about libraries and the people who run them, and not bothering to find out, either. That seems most likely, and it’s kind of discouraging.