I must admit – I dropped my subscription to the local news a long time ago. I was quite frustrated (and still am) that I am not in-the-know on upcoming community events. My small town is the location of many an event – parades on every conceivable named “holiday” on a calendar, veteran-centric festivities throughout the year, rodeos, 4-H events, etc. I find out about them when I’m coming home from work and the road is blocked due to it going on RIGHT THEN. Why did my local paper not put this in big letters on the front page? Or big letters anywhere in the paper? I get more news on upcoming events from my electric bill (thank you City of Williston!) than the local newspaper.
Hence, I love the idea of libraries being the hub of local news and events. Beard (2018) says “Who would understand what makes an area distinctive and would get its history right?” Indeed. Aren’t libraries tasked with going out into their communities and finding out what they want and then delivering? This is a case of there being information and there being a need, but the original delivery mechanism has failed. Some libraries are taking up this gauntlet and invite all local libraries to do the same.
Is your library spending money on maker space materials, VR machines, and 3-D printers? If we’re so concerned about bringing the community together with gadgets, let’s spend some time to bring them together outside of the library too. And it wouldn’t cost anything but a little time and wallspace (physically and digitally).
Beard, D. (January 28, 2018). The libraries bringing small-town news back to life. The Atlantic, Retrieved on February 2, 2018 from https://www.theatlantic.com/technology/archive/2018/01/libraries-local-news/551594/