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Post #5: Librarian’s Manifesto

March 24, 2008

I just came across an interesting blog post by Laura Cohen, on her blog, Library 2.0: An Academic’s Perspective. The blog post is called A Librarian’s 2.0 Manifesto. In it, she has 17 points on things that she will do in her library. Some of my favorites include “I will be courageous about proposing new services and new ways of providing services, even though some of my colleagues will be resistant.”, “I will avoid requiring users to see things in librarians’ terms but rather will shape services to reflect users’ preferences and expectations.”, and “I will let go of previous practices if there is a better way to do things now, even if these practices once seemed so great.”

These three points in Cohen’s manifesto are especially important, because we must strive to provide the best services we can to our patrons. If we propose new services, and new ways of providing services, we will continue to prove the relevance and importance of the library to our community. Shaping the services we provide to patrons to reflect their preferences and expectations will go a long way in showing patrons that we are here for them. We cannot continue to do something just because that’s the way it’s always been done. If we can find a better way, we should not be afraid to change our current practices.

As a future librarian, I will remember Cohen’s manifesto, and use it to shape the way I serve patrons.

3 Comments leave one →
  1. March 24, 2008 12:06 pm

    I’m really glad you wrote about this blog post, and I especially agree with your assertion of the importance of not being resistant. We are the next generation in this field that, until about 20 years ago, functioned pretty much the same for at least 100 years (arguably 400 years). Right now we’re the ones who are going in with new ideas that might be squelched because of their revolutionary nature. We will, most likely, experience the disappointment of how this feels. When we are at the cusp of retirement and a new generation is entering the field, it is imperative we remain open and flexible to a new way of working, and permanently end the cycle of rigid status quo.

  2. March 25, 2008 3:21 pm

    She really addresses “we’ve always done it that way…” well. 🙂

    good post!

  3. ginnybelle permalink
    March 26, 2008 5:47 pm

    I really liked these two:

    I will recognize that libraries change slowly, and will work with my colleagues to expedite our responsiveness to change.
    I read this less as “I will push for change” and more as “I will not get discouraged when change happens so slowly that it doesn’t seem to be happening.” That is my challenge. Our catalog still sucks, but we’re working putting up a blog… so it’s a start.

    I will not be defensive about my library, but will look clearly at its situation and make an honest assessment about what can be accomplished.
    I had to do this just the other day when a patron told me our library sucked. She immediately apologized, but I just gave her a link to our online library survey. It’s as important to have (constructive) criticism as it is to have glowing reviews.

    Thanks for bringing this list to our attention!

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