Even as a lover of e-books, I laughed at this hilarious video titled “Kindle killed the library book.”
It pokes fun at the mean-spirited U.K. politicians shutting down hundreds of brick-and-mortar local libraries. Props to actor-comic Tracey Ullman and friends for mocking the misers.
Library e-books mustn’t kill off the paper variety, at least not for many years and maybe not ever in the case of kids just learning to read. Different patrons have different needs. The all-digital BiblioTech library in San Antonio is well-done, but it isn’t necessarily right for everyone everywhere.
What’s more, even with library e-books, we’ll still need librarians in brick-and-mortar libraries to encourage people to read them.
Not to mention the many other services that local libraries offer, from story-telling to reference help. In fact, as is made clear by the number of people using in-library services, the BiblioTech is a shining example of the need for brick-and-mortar.
But could the U.S. end up like the U.K.? What might happen if Donald Trump reaches the Oval Office? He and like-minded politicians may or may not be as big a catastrophe for librarydom as their ignorant and corrupt counterparts in the U.K. have been. But in terms of his serving as a role model for pols at all levels, I wouldn’t get my hopes up. For now, here’s the take of some New York library advocates on Trump’s son-in-law and library-related real estate dealings. Fair or unfair linkage with Trump? Let’s see how this plays out if Trump becomes President. Far better that it not. If so, however, and if Trump is as horrible as I worry, maybe Tracey Ullman can come up with a U.S. variant of her parody.
Related: Can we trust the latest UK government library usage figures?, by TeleRead Associate Editor Paul StJohn Mackintosh.