Investigating the implications of the changing information and library landscape.

Stephen Fry stated aptly that ‘books are no more threatened by Kindle than stairs by elevators,’ and I concur with this statement.

The changing information and library landscape has brought upon implications such as the decreasing of print collections, declining of reference enquiries, diminishing funding and grants (or increased competitiveness for these), and changes in the use of libraries and services provided.

Audio books, eAudio, eResearch/databases, eBooks, were all considered at one point to be a threat to the existence of the library and Librarian. And yet here we are.

The development of open-access information and the digital availability of literature and academic works has also been considered to have a great impact upon the library as a provider of information. Will the free and wide availability of easily accessible material make our libraries and Librarians obsolete? Will the rapid advancement of technology end the existence of libraries and Librarians? I tend to disagree.

Libraries are constantly changing their image. Gone are the days where libraries were just wall to wall book shelves. They have become a public space. They are consistently moving with the times. With the invention of each new medium, libraries have adapted. Frey supports this statement discussing the creation of culture-based libraries that are always ‘assessing priorities and providing resources to support the things deemed most important.’

As libraries continue to adapt, so too do Librarians and Teacher Librarians. Earnshaw and Vince stated that ‘as the role of librarians as the gatekeepers of externally-published information resources begins to shrink, their role as the guardians of internally-produced information resources has the potential to expand’ (2008). Librarians provide a wide range of services to a diverse demographic. We have the professional skills associated with the management, selection, and collection of information. We exist to help our patrons.

As technology will continue to evolve, so will Teacher Librarians, Librarians, and Libraries. I like to believe that the continual change represents and provides an opportunity to extend our professional skills into new areas of possibilities and capabilities.

References
Earnshaw, Rae A., & Vince, John A. (2008) Digital Convergence: Libraries of the Future. London:Springer-Verlag.

Frey, T. (n.d) The future of Libraries : Beginning the Great Transformation. Retrieved from http://www.davinciinstitute.com/papers/the-future-of-libraries/

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1 Comment (+add yours?)

  1. Barbara Combes
    Mar 25, 2013 @ 06:39:20

    Hi Jessica, A lovely clean looking blog. Good Web design says white text on a dark background reduces readability considerably. It is better to have black or dark text on a white or light coloured background which you have done here. Something else to consider is colour. Did you know that at least 25% of the population (and this percentage may be higher) suffer from some form of colour-blindness. This includes red-blue and red-green colour-blindness which these people see as muddy brown. It is one of the criteria considered when checking a website for disability access. Overall this is a great site and well done. 🙂 BC

    Reply

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