Monday, April 23, 2012

When Netter and Anti-netter Meet: KABOOM!

A recent Pew Internet survey shows that 20% of Americans don't use the Internet.  The same survey also shows that 19% of American adults own tablet computers.  Twenty percent looks like a bigger number than nineteen percent.  But when did you last hear from a librarian about the importance of reaching out to their member anti-netters?

Yet many libraries will devote larger portions of their limited resources toward "engaging" with those mobile users while trimming the budgets for supporting the resources preferred by the non-internetters.

I guess it's like putting your parent in a retirement home.  At some point, you just have to tell dad he can't live alone anymore.  And he can't come live with you.  He's going to become someone else's problem from now on.

So we allow this caste system to continue.  In America. 

Yes, the problem is mainly from old people.  And in a generation, they'll all be dead and we'll have 99% of Americans online.

But some day, you'll also be old.  And then they'll be some new technology that you won't be able to afford or care about.  And you'll be part of some 20% that the librariandroid (yeah, isn't it awesome how everything sounds futuristic when you add "droid" or "bot" or "cyber" to it?  I wonder what the futuristic words will be in the future?) won't want to deal with when you can't get your 3rd-grade memories uploaded to Facebook and she complains, "Really? Again?"

Whenever a librarian sees that any area of their local population is under-served, she should ask, "How can I fix this?"  But that librariandroid is a total bitch, isn't she?

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