Converge, February 1999, p. 40

Justine Brown addresses three critical issues on the new roles and problems which today’s libraries must deal with.

  1. Internet access. Libraries across the country have been forced to address the issue of filtering to protect children from inappropriate web sites. While some libraries have been required to use filtering software, many libraries have been reluctant to implement any policy that limits access to materials.

  2. Training and staff retention. Many librarians have increasingly found themselves acting as technology teachers for their patrons. As a result, libraries must invest heavily in technology training for their staff. A consequence, however, is that once these librarians are trained, they become valuable commodities on the job market and it is often difficult for libraries to retain them.

  3. New projects. Libraries are now the place where many people go to learn about and access new technology. As a result, libraries have to become familiar with new and complicated technologies such as videoconferencing, digitized materials, and technology training for patrons.