People ask us librarians about the future of paper books all the time. In conversations with friends and people we have just met, we find ourselves talking about the future of books and libraries quite a lot. There is a lot of disagreement. I have my opinions, of course, but I am from a particular time and place. I have my memories and also knowledge of ebooks and ereaders.
But it occurred to me that one of the ways to gain insight into this question is to ask you, our teenaged patrons. I am sure you've heard the tired expression about being the future. It might be tired, but it is true. Libraries serve all ages, but if the questions are about what to do in the future and where we are going, then it is the younger patrons that can provide us some of the most interesting answers.
Teenagers have grown up with a lot of amazing book related technology and often understand it better than adults. Though it may not feel like it sometimes, many products and places are designed with you in mind. Libraries shouldn't be any different. We want you to like it here, now and in the future.
What we want to know is what format of books you like reading (on what device?) and what you think libraries are and should be. Do you like ebooks better than paper books? Do you think libraries should be full of paper books or have more room to study and work? Should a library be silent or allow conversation? Does the format of the book you want depend on what it is for? Maybe you like paper books to study from and ebooks for fun. Why do you like to come here? I don't know for sure. But I would like to.
While this is not a formal survey, we would like to know how our patrons feel about libraries and what they want to see here.
Please comment with your thoughts!