Sunday, November 24, 2013

S.F. city librarian: Libraries ‘more relevant than ever’

“Libraries are more relevant than ever,” according to San Francisco city librarian Luis Herrera, quoted in an essay by Frankie Rendon at

In “The Changing Landscape for Libraries and Librarians in the Digital Age,” Rendon argues that libraries “have kept pace with changing technologies and increased their relevancy even while traditional bookstores are still learning to navigate the digital era.”

Rendon quotes Herrera, circa 2012: “They are a place for personal growth and reinvention, a place for help in navigating the information age, a gathering place for civic and cultural engagement and a trusted place for preserving culture.”

Rendon notes in his essay that in 2010, “nearly 300 million Americans utilized library services.” Today, according to Rendon, 86 percent of libraries offer wireless Internet services and more than 20 percent provide computers for visitors to use.

“In addition to onsite offerings, libraries offer online access to digitized archives, circulate e-books, music, videos, and audio books, and much more.”

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