Public libraries play a central role in providing access to data and ensuring the freedom of digital knowledge.

Libraries Obsolete? 

I rather think not looking increasing patronage in our Auckland libraries. Libraries will evolve as e-book technology continues to rise but the library will still be a community hub where information, literature, and good place to have a read or scan on the Internet can happen very freely. Also Libraries act as Auckland Council repositories for official documents that come out for consultation from time to time.

Rebekka and I still use the library despite being Digital savvy alot.

An extract from the linked blog

Public libraries play a central role in providing access to data and ensuring the freedom of digital knowledge.

Data connectivity is intrinsic to most of our daily lives. The place which exists in almost every community large or small, rural or urban, is the public library. Ben Lee argues that not only do libraries provide free access to data, but they do so in an environment which is trustworthy and neutral, geared to learning. Access to digital technology increasingly overlaps with access to opportunity and it is important to recognise the role public libraries already play (and have always played) in keeping the gate to knowledge open. 

In a recent Financial Times article about e-books and Amazon Prof John Kay casually dismissed public libraries as being doomed alongside printed books.  He observed that readers might miss the “comfortable ambience” of libraries and likened library users to nostalgic steam train enthusiasts, but essentially his view was no harm would come if libraries disappeared.  This blog post is based on my original response to that article.

It is not just library sceptics like Prof Kay who portray public libraries as more about printed knowledge than digital knowledge.  Those campaigning to save libraries from spending cuts often point to the sacrilege of removing book shelves more than the inequality of the information divide and its conjoined twin, the digital divide. Free access to written knowledge as a route to a better life is what galvanised support for the first publicly-maintained libraries; not reading for the sake of reading. In 1852 Manchester opened the UK’s first free lending library and in his address at the grand opening, with Charles Dickens as guest of honour, Sir John Potter, Mayor of Manchester and main benefactor said:

We have been animated solely by the desire to benefit our poorer fellow-creatures. It is the duty of those who are more favoured by fortune than they, to do everything in their power to afford additional means of education and advancement to those classes.

W.R. Credland’s The Manchester Public Free Libraries (1899) a copy of which has been digitized by the Internet Archive project

In other words the purpose of the library was to enable the poor to build better lives.

Source and full article: Public libraries play a central role in providing access to data and ensuring the freedom of digital knowledge..

 

It would be a damn shame for Council to be doing library cutbacks in the 2015-2025 Long Term Plan due to Council financial mismanagement and wrong spending priorities….

 

 

2 thoughts on “Public libraries play a central role in providing access to data and ensuring the freedom of digital knowledge.

    1. I saw the photo earlier today and just had a read of the comments now.
      Opinion?
      See no harm given the context that it is in (I am taking it those are commuter cars parked on a lowly used road and the people have taken a bus or train into the City Centre).
      However, if the residents start complaining from lack of parking caused by the commuter parking then we switch to both a paid residential permit system and commuters being charged $5/day.
      But seeming I see a lack of complaints then keep calm and carry on.

      Oh as for one commenter I see there in the post you linked, yeah well he thinks industry is inherently evil

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