Access My Library

Most interesting bit to me:

“Hopefully, more people will become hip to the fact that many library services, not only databases, are accessible without having to go to the library building.” Gary Price

I like this statement for a couple of reasons:

We really need to shift our thinking from our physical libraries. Now before you get irked at me: I’m not saying forget the building, I’m saying balance services between a strong Web presence and a physical space that draws folks in, from Boomers to Gamers and back again.

Second it’s indicative that services are changing and those librarians who are stuck in the mindset that we serve the people who physically come to the library FIRST need to get a grip! For example, I received this email from a librarian struggling with implementing IM:

“At my library, there is the fundamental moral belief that a patron who comes to the library, finds a parking space and stands at the desk deserves more and better service than the lazier one who calls. Forget about the laziest one who contacts you online. There is the concept that they will always put a call on hold to answer the person at the desk, even if they are in the middle of helping the caller. These people (and it is at least 50% of our staff) don’t want to help people online. Period. This is where I’m stuck. Yes, I probably can just drag them through this and make them, but I so want them to see the light, and most importantly, have fun.”

Sakes people! I would be horrified if one of our librarians put a call on hold to jump to an in person question. We take ’em as they come. I offered the following to the above emailer: guide them gently into training and make that training fun with role-palying via IM and question sets, give them some good articles (“Born with the Chip” “IM Me” (sorry shameless plug)) and show them all the libraries doing good things with all kinds of services: IM, jybe, RSS, etc.

Try this on: to see an IMing library in action!