Local News via the Local Library

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/


Research paper published: Virtual car seat checks

It isn’t library related but is something near and dear – those make the best topics to research and improve. I’m now published in a peer-reviewed journal!

Schwebel, D., Tillman, M., Crew, M., Muller, M. and Johnston, A. (2017). Using interactive virtual presence to support accurate installation of child restraints: Efficacy and parental perceptions. Journal of Safety Research, 62, 235-243. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.jsr.2017.06.018

The Queering of the Public Library

In response to:

Fernandez, R. (2017, July 05). The Queering of the Public Library. Retrieved July 09, 2017, from http://www.oif.ala.org/oif/?p=10202

Recently in The American Conservative, long-time conservative writer Rod Dreher wrote about how he did not feel welcome at his library with all the gay materials, events, and displays especially during gay pride month. Dreher advocates that Christians form their own exclusive communities and largely remove themselves from the decadence of modernity because it is “dissolving authentic Christianity.”

Libraries are meant to welcome everyone in their community. Christians are not to shut ourselves away, Jesus went everywhere to tell His Good News. Christians can shoot ourselves in the foot with fear of looking less like we love Jesus by hanging with the nons. As a future librarian to the public, I will strive to serve all people and groups with information. If someone wants some Jesus info, good. If not, then that’s fine too. 

Matthew 24:12 Because of the increase of wickedness, the love of most will grow cold, 13 but the one who stands firm to the end will be saved.