Consumption of high-fat food and traditional fast-food items is decreasing while American consumers are spending more money on fresh fruits, natural and organics, and international food. Movie rental stores are closing, video games are outselling DVDs, and everyone is spending a lot of free time online rather than watching TV. What’s going on? Are all of our cherished pastimes becoming outdated?!?!
Turns out that, contrary to conventional wisdom, people are spending more time in libraries than ever before. And not just any people, but that coveted demographic of 18-30 year old “Generation Y” folks. These are the people who were born with a joystick in their hand and never really knew a time when computers weren’t available. The majority of them have broadband internet access at home. So why are they using the library? Because libraries are doing the opposite of what, for example the RIAA, are doing: instead of suing the people who use our services, we’re opening our arms to them. We’re welcoming technology, embracing new media, and offering people a place to come and encounter new ideas (whether through the web or *gasp* with actual books made of paper).
This year we had our biggest year ever in the history of this institution: over 56,000 items checked out. How was your year?