Thursday, August 02, 2007

In the News

The Boston Globe often does a good job of covering library issues, and they've done it again with a cheering story about how busy local libraries are and how the Internet has made it easier for people to use libraries (increasing use of media and interlibrary loan in particular). A snippet:

"Everyone thought we were going to go the way of the dinosaur," said Woburn Library director Kathleen O'Doherty, whose library hums with technology-driven activity: Laptop users picking up WiFi near the limestone fireplace, patrons at the front desk collecting materials they reserved online, tourists poring over genealogical materials they learned about on the Web. Technology, O'Doherty said, has made libraries "much more vibrant and alive."

Statewide, total circulation rose 25 percent from fiscal 1996 through 2006, and interlibrary loans grew nearly 400 percent, according to the state Board of Library Commissioners. Although book circulation dipped slightly across the state, it grew considerably at many area libraries. Meanwhile, nearly every library in the region has seen substantial audiovisual growth, and interlibrary lending everywhere has soared.

The author points out this growth comes at a cost, but overall it's a tribute to how well libraries work and how enthusiastically their public is responding.

No comments: