Why writers should stand up for libraries


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  1. fireshadow

    Where? How? With what money?

    Why would those companies bother?

    Also, there are apparently more libraries than Starbucks shops (http://www.theatlanticcities.com/neighborhoods/2013/06/every-library-and-museum-america-mapped/5826/).

    A quick search seems to indicate that library use is increasing and involves more than just being a "wireless hub":

    A 2007 study showed that visits to public libraries increased 61% between 1994 and 2004 (http://www.ala.org/news/news/pressreleases2007/april2007/salpr07)

    A 2010 study in California showed in a typical day more than one million people visit a library and more than 770,000 items were checked out or renewed (http://www.cla-net.org/displaycommon.cfm?an=1&subarticlenbr=124)

    Public programs attract lots of people and seem to have a positive relationship with circulation rates and reference questions (2011 CO study) (http://www.lrs.org/documents/fastfacts/298_Programming.pdf)

    Students who attend summer reading programs at public libraries demonstrate higher reading achievement (http://gslis.dom.edu/sites/default/files/documents/IMLS_executiveSummary.pdf)

    Parents seem to think libraries are really important (http://libraries.pewinternet.org/2013/05/01/parents-children-libraries-and-reading/)

    Books in print dominate the physical portion of a library's collection (http://www.imls.gov/imls_2010_public_library_survey_results_announced.aspx) (I had to use cached version of the page to read it).

    [You can look up a lot of information for specific libraries: http://www.lrs.org/data-tools/public-libraries/other-states/ ]

    What about cost?

    A 2004 Florida report showed that public libraries there return $6.54 for every $1.00 invested (http://dlis.dos.state.fl.us/bld/roi/pdfs/ROISummaryReport.pdf)

    A 2008 Wisconsin study estimates $4.06 return on investment for each dollar of taxpayer investment (http://pld.dpi.wi.gov/files/pld/pdf/wiimpactsummary.pdf)

    Colorado libraries show an average ROI of about 5 to 1 (2009 study) (http://www.lrs.org/documents/closer_look/roi.pdf)

    A 2012 Texas study showed $4.42 return for every dollar invested (https://www.tsl.state.tx.us/roi)

    So ... tell me more about why you doubt that libraries should be funded by taxpayers.

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