Posted on January 04, 2007 04:20 PM
In the past few months I've been actively reading Wall Street Journal. I wouldn't subscribe to it on my own since I was already reading IBD, however there are some really good articles and editorials in there and it didn't hurt that we were getting it for free since J took Kaplan GMAT classes. Oh and we also get Rolling Stone magazine. Thinking about it, that's a strange combination.
Well yesterday there was a really interesting editorial/commentary type article regarding the state of public libraries. If you're a librarian I think you'd get alot about what the writer was trying to say. He had alot of good points and I can really envision the library still being relevant but taking interesting topics in a community and developing a forum for discussion with speakers talking about things that matter. Sort of like the Greek philosophers teaching forum but heavy on bringing communities together. Almost like a mash up of TED conferences and community activism. Yup the books are useful but the value is really the ideas and how people come together to share and improve on those ideas and ultimately take action on those ideas to improve the community. If librarians become equated to stockboys stocking books on the shelves which is what the writer mentioned then it's a pretty sad fate for librarianship as a profession. You think they don't get paid well today, it will be worse in the future.
Citation: 1/3/07 WSJ In the Fray: Should Libraries' Target Audience Be Cheapskates With Mass-Market Tastes?