Friday, February 27, 2009

shhhhhhhhhh.......I read at work............Don't tell anyone

Yes, I admit it. I work in a library. I read at work. On the taxpayer's dime. Please, please, please don't tell Mike Foley. He'd probably investigate me and God only knows what he'd find.

For those of you not in the know, Network Services staff at the Nebraska Library Commission made a video of themselves setting up and testing a gaming system & the games Rock Band & Dance Dance Revolution. It's actually pretty entertaining except for the annoying music. They posted it on youTube. Some good Nebraska citizen stumbled across it and complained to Action 3 News in Omaha. The ensuing media uproar led State Auditor Mike Foley to instigate an in depth investigation of the incident, which actually IS part of the staffers' jobs. The whole situation has become a nationwide sensation. It's been written up on numerous blogs & there have been some pretty interesting comments from readers. The general gist is that Nebraskans must be pretty backward to not know that libraries offer a lot more than books these days and that video gaming events are legitimate library programming.

The video even made it onto G4TV's web page! The significance of that is debatable. G4TV used to be TechTV & one of my favorite channels when they actually had some useful computer help shows. Now it's mostly crap & I quit watching years ago.

Hey, Nebraska is famous now....................and our State Auditor & TV "news reporters" look like real yahoos. I just wonder what the investigation cost? Do you suppose it was more than the less than $500 spent by the Library Commission on the games & gaming system? Bet it was. Just who is wasting taxpayers' money here?

While I sometimes get irritated when it seems like Commission staff spends all it's time in meetings when they should be sitting there at their desks waiting for my calls, I don't think they did anything wrong. It WAS unwise to post the video on youTube. Sometimes it's just better to do the job & stay under the radar.

1 comment:

  1. I am a Librarian in Nebraska and I don't want my tax dollars going for gaming. We do have gaming at our library and we tend to use PRIVATE dollars for this. I think most people DO understand that libraries offer a lot more than books to the public now. I certainly do realize that gaming is a valid library resource, however, I also believe that Libraries should be using private funding if they have it for gaming.

    I think we need to do MORE to get tweens and young adults into reading and getting them to the library. I think using gaming gets them into the library, but with out a good youth services librarian, they aren't going to use their reading skills or expand them, especially when it comes to spelling.

    And yes I work in a medium size library in a town of about 30k people, so I am not in a small library either.

    Its just my opinion and I think the public needs to be better informed on how exactly a library is funded, most of the time it is with tax dollars and they have a right to say where those dollars go, after all, we have a say about the local board of education.