Category Archives: Mobile technologies in libraries

4 Ways Text Messaging Can Improve Your Patron Communications

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A recent Pew study revealed that 80 percent of American cell phone owners use text messaging as a means of communication, sending or receiving an average of 41.5 text messages per day. For the 18-24 age group, 97 percent of cell phone owners text, sending or receiving an average of 109.5 texts per day.

One look at these numbers and you know instantly how to reach a majority of your current library patrons and an even greater majority of tomorrow’s library patrons: via text.

Text messaging is a fast and efficient means of communicating with your library patrons and there are many ways in which you can use text messaging to improve your patron communications. Here are just a few types of messages you can communicate to your patrons via text:

1. Circulation Notices Such as Holds and Overdues.

Emails today convey much less of a sense of urgency than they did a few years ago, especially to younger library patrons. To catch your users’ attention with important circulation notices, try sending them via text instead of email. This way, they can act on the notices immediately.

2. Promotional Polls and Contests

A great way to keep your patrons engaged is to link promotions to programming and other library events. Your library can have contests where you send out polls or questions via text for prizes such as first row seats to an upcoming speaker (ie. “The first three patrons to text us the author of Tender Is the Night win front row seats to our October Author Speaker Series Event”). You can also hold a text vote to choose between two programming possibilities for an upcoming date.

3. URLs to Newsletters or Other Library Publications

Does your library publish a monthly newsletter? A terrific way to get the newsletter into the hands of your patrons so they may have immediate access is to send them a short text with the URL right when it is published. Your patrons can be reading the newsletter that your staff worked so hard on literally within seconds of publication.

4. Programming Reminders

In today’s fast-paced and information-packed world, we need to be reminded of things. A great way to promote your library programs is to send your patrons text reminders of upcoming events, along with URLs linking to further information if available. This way, they can check their schedules on the go and even add the events directly from your text to their calendars.

Try these text messaging tips to improve communications at your library. We think your patrons will appreciate it.

5 Reasons You Should Have Ask-a-Librarian on Every Page of Your Website


To get the most value out of your library’s services and provide patrons with the highest level of service, it is important to make it as easy as possible for your patrons to connect with those services

The best way to connect patrons with your Ask-a-Librarian service is to have Ask-a-Librarian tabs, links or buttons on every page of your library’s website. Here are five ways that implementing such a strategy with your online reference will benefit your users:

1. All successful advertisers know that the key to getting a message across is through repetition and consistent branding. When your patrons interact with a consistent layout from page to page and see Ask-a-Librarian on every page, you have created the best possible ongoing marketing campaign for your service, with an important added bonus: It’s free.

2. While we can predict some user behavior, we never really know when and where on a website patrons are going to need assistance. A patron may be on a page where the information seems to be straight-forward to librarians, but to an uninitiated patron the information may leave questions. Likewise, a patron may be on one page but thinking ahead to another problem or the next step in his or her research process. Having Ask-a-Librarian immediately available from wherever the patron may be on the library’s website ensures that he or she will be able to connect to help when needed.

3. If a patron is interacting with the library’s website, encounters a problem, and then has to recall where to go to find the Ask-a-Librarian service, the library has not succeeded in making the most of the service’s primary benefit to users – the ability to connect them instantly with a library professional who can solve their problem.

4. Consistent placement of the Ask-a-Librarian tab on your library’s webpages makes marketing the service via social media or flyers much easier. When the Ask-a-Librarian tab is on every page of your library website, there is no need to place an easily forgotten URL (or URLs) on your marketing materials – simply state that the Ask-a-Librarian service is available from every page on the library website and where it is located (“look for our Ask-a-Librarian tab in the upper left-hand corner of any page on the library site”).

5. Each Ask-a-Librarian query that comes from a specific page can help you improve the overall content and design of that page. When you have an Ask-a-Librarian chat box on every page, and you are tracking which pages queries come in from, this gives you the great benefit of an ongoing focus group indirectly telling you what works and what doesn’t work on every page of your library’s site.

Responding quickly to queries will help you provide the top-notch customer service that will keep your library patrons satisfied and returning for more business. To make sure your patrons submit those queries whenever they need help on your library’s site, you should have ask-a-librarian tabs on every page.

 

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Library News Update: 3D Printing Arrives at the Library, a brief history of the Bookmobile, and more

File photo. The Johnson County Library's Shawnee branch is located at 13811 Johnson Drive.

Libraries are often on the forefront of technology. The Chicago Public Library brings new meaning to that trend with its new CPL Innovation Lab. The Innovation Lab is free to the public and features three 3D printers, 3D printing software and various related tools. The CPL is also offering workshops to introduce patrons to the technology.

Chicago Public Library To Open 3D Printer Space

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At Mosio we’ve been watching the ’3D Printer in Libraries’ trend grow and we’re all for it. Chicago isn’t the only one. Joining them is the Saxonburg Area Library in Pittsburg, which received a generous gift of one 3D printer for its patrons to explore.

Heard Off the Street: Library’s 3-D printer spits out all kinds of fun and learning

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From technology innovation to the history of an innovative way to provide service to underserviced rural communities, the Chicoer has a story of the beginning of the California State Library Bookmobile. Long before digital reference was avialable, libraries reached out to patrons by physically bringing services to them. We might even say that the Bookmobile can be seen as the start of mobile reference

Check It Out: A library on wheels

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We’re also keeping our eye and these trends in library technologies and services, from the Library as a retail space, to studies on how young people are using libraries today.

Dalby Library enters the digital age

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Library system works to serve patrons’ changing technological needs

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When Libraries Become Retailers

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Siouxland Libraries Upgrade System

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Libraries will release a “Top 10″ recommendation list starting this fall

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THE LATEST ADDITION TO THE OBAMACARE ARMY: LIBRARIES

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Library learning to grow on its own

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Hutt libraries offer eReaders

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New report maps young Americans’ library, technology use

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Lake libraries add new database useful for finding friends, doing business research and more

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Young adults like libraries and books, new study finds

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W.O.W. bus brings books, technology to Missoula County

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Healthy libraries, healthy communities

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NFC tagged library lets you research books with your smartphone before you borrow

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Library user numbers up 10,000 as eBook usage rockets

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Queens Library Introduces Downloadable E-Magazines

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Libraries offer patrons e-books

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Westfield Library offers magazine collection online

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Library use can reverse falling standards

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Johnson County Library honored for innovation

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Staten Island’s Stapleton library bigger, beautiful and chock full of books

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Library to start Sunday hours

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Found and listed by Mosio for Libraries – Patron Support Software for Libraries. All copyright belongs to original owners.

Library News: Libraries using radio waves to save staff and customers time, The “Bookless” Library, US libraries to help uninsured Americans figure out new health coverage options

(Chris Carlson/AP)

At Mosio we love libraries. It turns out so do young people. A new study finds that the age group that uses libraries the most is 16 to 29 year olds. Given how tech savvy young people are, this is an incentive for libraries to keep on the cutting edge of technology and digital reference trends. However, the study also finds that despite their technological skills, young people are still fond of traditional bound paper books.

Young adults like libraries and books, new study finds

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A love of paper books may be part of the success of the “Little Free Library” kiosks. Popping up around the globe, these small wooden boxes offer people a new way to share books and the reading experience.

Little Free Library kiosks pop up in Sacramento area

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From free books on every corner to the “Bookless Library,” North Carolina State University is turning the traditional library on its head. Their new Hunt Library is a clean modern open space, with lots of room for students to congregate and collaborate. What’s missing are the books. They aren’t gone completely, however. They are simply tucked away in an archival space, and delivered by a book delivery system called the “bookBot.”

The “Bookless” Library

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Here are some other news items from the libary world you might find interesting.

Queens Library Offers Free Digital Copies of Magazines

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ALA 2013: Libraries to Offer Monthly ‘Top 10′ Book List

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Bringing libraries back to communities

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Video: Libraries using radio waves to save staff, customers time

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Local libraries: staying relevant in a digital age

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Siouxland Libraries New Technology

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The Central Library Moves Hidden Treasures Out Into The Public Eye

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Library now offers even more downloadable audiobooks

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Morton Grove Library to open new entrance, install self-checkout

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Amid changing technology, West Virginia’s public libraries maintain relevance

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Laptop donations increase access at library

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Howard Library System named Library of the Year

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APNewsBreak: US libraries to help uninsured Americans figure out new health coverage options

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Who knew reading could be so lucrative — Library system to give away $1,500 in prizes

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Library to roll out new checkout system

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Mt. Airy’s Lovett Library selected as prototype in citywide library system transformation

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Oregon State Library offers services to enhance local library programs

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Perry Castañeda Library consolidates service desk

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New mobile app lets users search library catalog, download eBooks

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Access Aberdeen library services 24/7

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Pima Library goes mobile with new app

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The Library virtually and in reality

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Found and listed by Mosio for Libraries – Patron Support Software for Libraries. All copyright belongs to original owners.

 

Library News Update: African Libraries in the Digital Age – “Reaching Outside Their Walls”, Introducing the new standalone catalog system, Dubai libraries: A paradise for book lovers

Here at Mosio, we love to hear about ways libraries going digital. One consistent technology trend that is driving up circulation numbers across the country is e-books. West Virginia public libraries are finding that their patrons want books in every form they can get them, from paper to audio books to ebooks. The variety of options is bringing people in the door.

Popularity of eBooks has changed library circulation

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Meanwhile in Texas, Bryan-College Station libraries have seen an additional 2000 patrons due to their e-book collection.

Bryan-College Station libraries increasing use of eBooks

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E-books are also driving an steady monthly uptick in circulation numbers at the Calloway County Library in Kentucky.

Ebooks proving popular at Calloway library

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Where do you learn how to survive a zombie apocolypse? The public library of course. The Baraboo Library is bringing teens in the library by turning it into a community center with their Tuesday night programs. During the zombie program teens discussed zombies in pop culture, as well as learned important lessons about overall disaster preparedness.

Feeding teen brains at the library

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Here are some more news bytes about digital libraries and libraries as community spaces.

African Libraries in the Digital Age – “Reaching Outside Their Walls”

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Advances in technology changes local libraries for the better

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Heard Off the Street: Library’s 3-D printer spits out all kinds of fun and learning

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Column: Library offers plenty of e-options

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Introducing the new standalone catalog system

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Chicago Public Library to Open Free Digital Fabrication Maker Space

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South Brunswick Library Offers Cardholders Access To Digital Magazines

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A single library card for Bradford County

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The New York Public Library checks out e-commerce

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Solano libraries now lend out laptops

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Rockford Public Library Seeing More Digital Bookworms

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Dubai libraries: A paradise for book lovers

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Little Free Libraries’ Catching On In Door County

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Library of Congress Transitions to Free, Online-Only Cataloging Publications

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Houston Public Library unveils new catalog, customer account interface

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Rafael Anchia: Think libraries are important? Let’s prove it

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HUDSON LIBRARY OFFERS DIGITAL PROGRAMS TO WHET THE TECHIE APPETITE

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Secrets of the Library: Download magazines and more at your library

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Library one of the best deals in town, says director

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“Little Free Library” encourages reading, community spirit

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Library’s electronic magazines free, easy

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Found and listed by Mosio for Libraries – Patron Support Software for Libraries. All copyright belongs to original owners.

Library News: Library system vital to community, Public Libraries Outnumber McDonald’s, Behold, Every One of the 17,000 Libraries in the U.S. Mapped

It seems like there’s a McDonald’s or Starbucks on every corner. They’re a sign of dependability. You might be surprised to know that there are actually more public libraries in the United States than individual stores of either of the mega chains. There are approximately 17,000 public libraries, while McDonald’s has approximately 14,000 stores and Starbucks has 11,000.

Public Libraries Outnumber McDonald’s

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If you want to get a visual of what that looks like, you can view all the public libraries in America mapped out here.

Behold, Every One of the 17,000 Libraries in the U.S. Mapped

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Seattle Public Libraries are reaching out to patrons in a creative new way, with their Books on Bikes program. Librarians will be bicycling to various outdoor events this year with small trailers that function as mobile libraries. The innovative outreach goes a step further by including mobile wifi connections that allow the librarians to demonstrate e-books and other digital technology the library has to offer. It’s a marriage of high tech and lo tech.

Seattle Public Library Puts Books on Bikes

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Here are some more library news items we found interesting.

Library Enhances Digital Library

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Devon libraries’ self-help mental health scheme

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OUR VIEW: Library system vital to community

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App puts Pima County Public Library on your smartphone, tablet

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Rockford Public Library sees boom in digital borrowing

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At Your Library: Empowering people to change their lives

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The Future of Libraries: Short on Books, Long on Tech

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Digital library to lighten the load in Ridgewood schools

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New app launched to help library users in Gloucestershire

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Ottawa library first in Canada to offer Google Chromebooks

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The house of treasures: your library

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Books on wheels: Mobile library, a hit

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ALA 2013: The Library of 2020 Will Be…

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New One Card Six Libraries service a major success

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Sunnyvale: County’s first library vending machine serves books at the push of a button

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Little Free Library – A good thing that’s in a small package

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Box serves as portable library in Brooklyn

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Sacramento Public Library named one of top 3 in North America

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Red telephone boxes in Essex to become ‘mini libraries’

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Libraries Check Out E-Sales

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Kitchener library launches mobile app for smartphones and tablet computers

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Rockford library adds magazines to its digital lineup

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Found and listed by Mosio for Libraries – Patron Support Software for Libraries. All copyright belongs to original owners.

Library News: Libraries look beyond the shelves, Why Libraries Are More Relevant Than Ever Before, New York Libraries 24 Hour Read In

Albertsons Library at Boise State gets some great publicity from the campus newspaper. The story talks about the various services the library provides that aid students in their research needs, and save them valuable time. The piece details how to get research assistance both in the library, and through the text and mobile options.

Library tips to save students time

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Another fun example of how libraries are drawing in young people is Harlem’s new library dedicated entirely to teenagers. The library offers 4,400 square feet of open space. Teens can play video games, snack, lounge and study. The space boasts bright colors and creative seating.

PUBLIC LIBRARY ENCOURAGES TEENS TO HANG OUT [PICS]

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Read more about new trends in libraries in these other stories.

Libraries look beyond the shelves

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MidPointe: We are a modern, changing library

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Maine libraries’ Internet expansion aids jobless

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Washington libraries embrace technology

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Montclair Public Library investigating new ways to check out

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Could Bookless Libraries Revolutionize Access for the Poor?

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Public Libraries of Saginaw keep kids, adults reading with summer reading kickoff June 3

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Why Libraries Are More Relevant Than Ever Before

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A Gorgeous Home Library Would Turn Anyone Into A Bookworm (PHOTOS)

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Rediscover the wonders at your local library

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Even in the digital age, public libraries provide an important service

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Digital bookmobile’ promotes e-books

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Library of Congress to exhibit 230 new items in “Civil War in America”

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Bookmobile Hits The Streets

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Howard County Library System Named 2013 Library of the Year

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Libraries expanding availability of free digital downloads

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City of Evanston announces new mobile app for the Public Library

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New York Libraries 24 Hour Read In

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Check it Out at the Library: Traveling photos tell county libraries stories

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Library use on the rise in a tough economy

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Duluth library’s book-delivery program comes off the shelf

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Patrons can use materials from any location in the library system

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Williamsburg Library gets online magazines

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Found and listed by Mosio for Libraries – Patron Support Software for Libraries. All copyright belongs to original owners.

42 Library-Related Memes [PHOTOS]

Here memes, there memes, everywhere meme-memes! Who doesn’t love them? We’ve compiled a list of 42 library related memes for your LOLing pleasure with identification of each (where possible) as to which is which. Enjoy!

1. Bad Luck Brian

Doesn’t take out any books, library alarm still goes off.

 

2. Philosoraptor

How do I cite sources for my research paper? Use the library writing and citations resources.

 

3. Y U NO

Patron calling library, Y U no use library website.

 

4. Lord of the Rings (One Does Not Simply)

One does not simply return from the library without a book.

one-does-not-simply-return-from-the-library-without-a-book

5. Condescending Wonka

A George W. Bush library? Do tell me more!

 

6. Matrix (What if I Told You)

What if I told you that wearing high heels in the library is a bad idea.

 

7. World’s Most Interesting Cat

I don’t always chew up your books. But when I do, they’re from the library.

 

8. Thousand Yard Stare

Caught eating in the library, thousand yard stare.

 

9. LOL Cats

I’m in your library, check me out!

 

10. Grumpy Cat

Your library wants a cat? Pick me.

 

11. Hey Girl…

Good thing I brought my library card because I’m checking you out.

 

12. Foul Bachelor Frog

In the library to work on chinese imperialism assignment, look up memes instead.

IN THE LIBRARY TO WORK ON CHINESE IMPERIALISM ASSIGNMENT, LOOK UP MEMES INSTEAD

 

13. Lord of the Rings (One Does Not Simply)

One does not simply cite 50 references in 10 mins.

 

14. Socially Awkward Penguin

Goes to the reference desk, pretends to use the stapler instead of getting research help.

 

15. Hey Girl…

I know finding sources for your papers can be tough. That’s why I asked the library to provide personalized research assistance.  Just for you.

 

16. World’s Most Interesting Man

I don’t always use the library but when I do I get great results.

 

17.  Keep Calm and…

Keep calm and ask a librarian.

 

18. Skateboarding Professor

First to the library then to class at 8:02.

 

19. Good Guy Greg

You have fines over 10 pounds, lets you borrow his library card.

 

20. Ermahgerd

Havin fern ain’t herd wern u hav a lerbery curd.

 

21. Monorail Kitteh

Now stops @ library.

 

22. Scumbag Steve

Takes library elevator, gets off at second floor.

 

23. Nyan Cat

Library card

 

24. Unknown

Was file sharing before it was cool.

 

25. Philosoraptor

I can book a room in a room of  books?

 

26. Futurama Fry (Not Sure If…)

Not surf if “it’s in the library”, works as justification of source.

 

27. Lazy College Student

I go to the library to read all the new facebook statuses.

 

28. South Park (You’re gonna have a bad time)

If you talk in the library, you’re gonna have a bad time.

 

29. First World Problems

Need to pee when in library, don’t want to lose my computer.

 

30. Unknown

Studying in the library during exam week …Rookie mistake.

 

31. Conspiracy Keanu

Talked in library line, Q tip are my soul.

 

32. Some E Cards

You gotta fight. For your right. To library.

 

33. Success Kid

Walking around library during finals week, found a study room.

 

34. Game of Thrones (Winter is Coming)

Prepare yourselves, due dates are coming.

 

35. Annoying Facebook Girl

Goes to the library, opens chat.

 

36. Paranoid Parrot

Plug headphones in at library. Everyone can still hear my music.

 

37. Insanity Wolf

No eating or drinking allowed in the library? Eat and drink in the library.

 

38. Game of Thrones (Winter is Coming)

Brace yourselves, the tax questions are coming.

 

39. Judgmental Bookseller Ostrich

You don’t understand the filling system. Sorry, I wasn’t aware the alphabet could be confusing.

 

40. Upvoting Obama

Book not in library? Library will buy for you.

 

41. Lord of the Rings (One Does Not Simply)

A librarian does not simply shut kids up with shhh.

 

42. Success Kid

Went to library, found book I wanted.

 

Content copyright original owners. Compiled by Mosio for Libraries – Patron Support Software

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25 Great Text Messaging Acronyms You May or May Not Need to Know for Your Text-a-Librarian Service

Do you speak text?

Mosio_TextSpeak_Translator

Your patrons speak many languages, and you can’t learn them all. But one thing you can do to improve service to your patrons is familiarize yourself with some of the more common terms and phrases in their languages of preference. If your patron is text-savvy enough to be texting his or her librarian, then one of his or her languages of preference is chat and chances are he or she is up on the latest text messaging acronyms.

A great way to enhance chat service for your patrons and maximize your efficient use of time is to become familiar with some of the most common and helpful text messaging acronyms. Speaking your users’ languages, especially in online communications, will help them feel more comfortable and give that personal touch so they don’t feel like they are talking to a robot.

There are thousands of text messaging acronyms, but we want to stick to the ones that can be used in a professional environment and that are not too obscure. These are the ones your users will likely be using, and these are the ones that you should be using as well. You will want to tailor your chat acronym use to each session, gauging each individual user’s chat acronym expertise level by the acronyms that he or she uses him- or herself.

Here is a list of 25 text messaging acronyms which you can add to your arsenal of reference tools.

AAP – Always a pleasure
BIF – Before I forget
BRB – Be right back
BTW – By the way
EOM – End of message
F2F – Face to face
GL – Good luck
HAND – Have a nice day
IANAL – I am not a lawyer
IMA – I might add
IMO – In my opinion
IOW – In other words
ISWYM – I see what you mean
JIC – Just in case
OIC – Oh, I see
OTOH – On the other hand
PD – Public domain
SOW – Speaking of which
THX – Thanks
TTBOMK – To the best of my knowledge
TYVM – Thank you very much
WB – Welcome back
WRT – With regard to
WTG – Way to go!
YW – You’re welcome

The patron texting a question is typically expecting a quick response and librarians need to be prepared to answer text-a-librarian questions promptly. Lots of chat acronyms, such as ROFL and L8R, are designed for close friends. Your users may employ such acronyms, but you will want to restrict your use to the more professional ones such as those in the list above.

And if your patron sends you a puzzling collection of letters and you have no idea what they mean, Mosio’s text speak translator will give you the help you need with its 800+ text messaging acronym definitions.

Library News: Use Smart Phone as library card at the Westfield Library, Little Free Libraries Promote Love of Books, Library Catering on Wheels

Libraries go green, as the first solar-powered library opened in New Zealand. The library is entirely powered by 115 photovoltaic panels. Any energy generated beyond what the library needs will be sold back to the national grid. Additionally, the library has two charging stations for electric cars. Sustainable building elements are throughout the entire new library design.

First solar-powered library

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Library patrons in Westford, New Jersey can now use their smart phones as library cards. The CardStar app lets patrons save their library card barcode on their smart phones. Then they can scan the code directly off the phone to check out books.

Use Smart Phone as library card at the Westfield Library

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The Oakville Public Library is also joining the smart phone app trend, by offering an app that allows patrons to access their accounts. Patrons can place holds, renew checked out items, check library hours, search collections and download e-books and audiobooks.

Oakville Public Library launches new free smartphone app

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Here are some other library news items we found interesting.

Huntsville Public Library joins Houston technology network

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NYPL Releases Digital Collections API to the Public

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MissCo library system offers ebooks

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Learn new languages with library’s new electronic resources

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Greenle libraries now offer Zinio news link

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Tanzania: PM Unveils Pioneer E-Book Library

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Even in the digital age, libraries relevant to community

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Little Free Libraries Promote Love of Books

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Santa Clara County libraries promote early literacy skills

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Dig into reading this summer at New Orleans Public Library

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Cincinnati Library Reaches Card Milestone

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Abington Library’s Wired Wednesdays Digitize Patrons’ Experience

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Texas Library First Ever All-Digital Facility

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Flint Public Library offering free passes, discounts to state museums, more with Michigan Activity Pass program

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Library gearing up for summer projects, including children’s reading program

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Selma Library prepares to offer e-books

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The New York Public Library Announces Historic Agreement to Display Original Copy of the Bill of Rights

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Library Catering on Wheels

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Paramus Library column: New system helps optimize Bergen County libraries

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Grand Island library offers digital magazines

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Charleston County library offering free digital copies of magazines

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Orange libraries offer free technology training online

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Found and listed by Mosio for Libraries – Patron Support Software for Libraries. All copyright belongs to original owners.