"The only surprise is that public libraries have survived for so long. Books are cheap, information is widely available on the internet. Libraries offer poor service- bad opening hours, poor quality buildings - their only selling point is that they are free! Yes - they offer community space, IT and are valued by users; but most of the population are not users. If we have to chose between healthcare and libraries I know which I would choose!"
(Anonymous comment on yesterday's post)
'The point here is that there are a lot of uninformed opinions about public libraries. This is not surprising given the lack of national leadership over the decades and the lack of any national marketing or significant debate (up until this year at least) in the media. Those who care about libraries thus need to inform opinion and provide the information. Or those people who see there being no point in libraries are going to win, because they're the ones who are holding the purse strings and, often, are in government or in a council near you.'