Cell Phone Lounge

Leigh Anne Vrabel discusses articles on urban nomadism at Library Alchemy:

http://libraryalchemy.wordpress.com/2008/04/22/part-i-the-new-nomadism/

And comes to an interesting conclusion:

Cell phone lounge.

This lounge accomplishes two things:

  1. Acknowledges that cell phones have permeated the culture and meets patron expectations for new nomadic spaces.
  2. Gives the library more control over how those nomadic spaces are governed.

Our current cell phone policy asks users to take their calls in the hallway.  While this is respectful to patrons who desire quiet, it’s kind of like asking your adult relatives to sit at the kids’ table for Thanksgiving dinner.  Why not create a situation that’s win-win, as opposed to “some people win, some people lose?”  It’s also beneficial for staff in that security guards–and reference librarians–will be able to enforce policies more easily when there’s a designated space that’s just as nice as the spaces everybody else gets to use. If somebody’s using a cell phone anywhere other than the lounge, we can point to the lounge and say, “We respected your needs. Please respect ours.”

Fascinating! I would agree with her thinking – why can’t there be spaces for various folks? Just like the quiet reading room at Loyola where technology was not to be used. Good stuff!

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2 thoughts on “Cell Phone Lounge”

  1. I think this is a great idea, but it is just not practical for hundreds of small, rural libraries. Most libraries serving small communities do not have separate rooms.

  2. Thanks kindly for the coverage! Susie has a point in that it’s not a solution that will work for every library. Then again, it’s not meant to. I’d love to hear more about cell phone policies in smaller libraries, just for perspective…

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