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Getting a Grip on What Library Patrons Want

Did any of you see that great commercial last weekend during the Super Bowl?  You know, the one about being quiet in libraries!  We have included it in this week’s post!  Which one are you? Cream or Cookie?

In a wonderful blog article from last week titled Innovative Library Services “in the wild“, Kathryn Zickuhr from Pew Research summarized how many ways libraries in the 21st century respond to their own communities needs.  So many choices!

I love the one about Poe in the 21st Century.  I have imbedded that video here (sorry, it’s 25 minutes long – but worth watching if you like library kids programs!).

The big question is: what do patrons in Aloha want? One answer to this question is provided again (assuming we believe Aloha’s residents are similar to the rest of the country) by Pew in their report, Library Services in the Digital Age.   Kathryn Zickuhr this week writes about simliar topics and references additional research.  Follow her blog post Should libraries shush?  She writes,

“If there’s one thing our research shows, it’s that there’s no one thing people want their libraries to be. They want their libraries to be lots of things, a place where they can study and meet with friends and attend meetings — and more. (And different patrons want different things — and patrons in different communities have different needs, as well.) But we do see some common themes, one of which is that quiet spaces are still an important part of what people expect from their libraries.
And it’s not just patrons. One librarian in our online panel, echoing many others, described quiet study spaces as “essential.” Another highlighted the multiple roles libraries play as spaces in the community: “a place to go where it is reasonably quiet, comfortable — to focus, read, study,” and also as “a place to gather for study groups, group learning and leisure experiences, [and] library-sponsored community events.”
Perhaps this is why, in a separate question, Americans identified having separate spaces for different services as one of the top things libraries should do — only coordination with local schools and free literacy programs ranked higher. A majority (61%) of Americans say that libraries should “definitely” have completely separate locations or spaces for different services, such as children’s services, computer labs, reading spaces, and meeting rooms, and another 27% say libraries should “maybe” do this.”

If you have some **GREAT IDEAS**, we would love to hear from you!  Send your ideas to “info@alohalibrary.org” and mention IDEAS FOR ACLA  in the subject line.  Pass this on and like it on facebook.