With the terms of what constitutes “news” or even “facts” ever more in question, most Americans are comfortable depending on public libraries to help guide them toward reliable sources. A new study cited by the Pew Research Center reports that at least seventy-eight percent of adults believe their local library can steer them toward information that is “trustworthy and reliable.” In fact, the public’s growing fear of being bamboozled by “fake news” may actually be working in our libraries’ favor, as “about six-in-ten adults (sixty-one percent) say they would be helped at least somewhat in making decisions if they got training on how to find trustworthy information online.” Chances are, your local librarian will be able to help you with that very objective.
Many libraries offer services that might surprise a few people. Two unusual things we offer are Notary Public and Passport services.
A notary public can witness a signature on a document with a proper photo ID. Remember not to sign the document, the notary must see you sign the document. There is a small fee for this service.
Yes, you can apply for a passport at our library! We have several passport acceptance agents who are trained by the Department of State to accept your application. Applications are available on line or you may pick one up at the library. You can also get your passport photo taken at the library, just let us know when you sign up for an appointment.
Unlike many places these services are available in the evening or on Saturdays.
Oh man. This is tailor-made for libraries. Well… it’s tailor-made for books anyway, which we are all about. And all we have to do to show our support is exactly what we always do!
Which is to say, provide people with access to tens of thousands of books and encourage and enable those same people to read those same books. It’s perfect!
What can you do to show your appreciation for the dominant means of storing, transporting and spreading knowledge and understanding on Earth for the last 1,700 years or so (before books it was all scrolls and wax and rocks)?
Take time out from planning your costume parties and hanging fake cobwebs and stop by the library. Check out that old favorite, or that new book you’ve been meaning to read, or, if all else fails, ask a librarian to suggest something for you (if you plan it ahead of time you can fill out a Library Concierge form and have a list of five personally tailored recommendations waiting for you). Welcome to October and happy reading.
Not something that gets said very often, but according to the Pew Research Center public libraries might start saying it more.
Millennials are the most likely generation of Americans to use public libraries
A new analysis of Pew Research Center survey data from fall 2016 finds that 53% of Millennials (those ages 18 to 35 at the time) say they used a library or bookmobile in the previous 12 months. That compares with 45% of Gen Xers, 43% of Baby Boomers and 36% of those in the Silent Generation.
Relatively high library use by Millennials might be related to changes that many public libraries have undergone in the past 20 years. Previous Pew Research Center surveys have documented how extensively people use computers and internet connections at libraries, as well as how interested they are in extra services such as literacy programs for young children, meeting spaces for community groups, and technology “petting zoos” that provide opportunities to explore 3-D printers and other tech gadgetry.
I’m assuming that most of our blog readers probably have the basics down, but if you don’t, or you know someone who doesn’t, don’t hesitate to register for one or both of our introductory classes today.