Today I’m looking at new borrowing procedures at public libraries. I was at the City Library on Tuesday and found I didn’t need to speak to anyone at all. There were lots of people there but very few staff. The photo is not good so I’ll move onto the next photo.
This photo isn’t too good either but gives you a better idea of the layout. First you put your card in the spot provided so the computer can identify you. Then you lay your books, CDs or whatever out on the pad for the computer to see. Then you press Exit or Finish and it prints out a slip. You don’t need to speak to anyone and except for returns everything is automated. There were two staff members nearby to answer questions and one lady came up to me to ask if she could help me when she saw me taking this photo…I didn’t explain.
Two things I’m not happy about with this new procedure. Jobs, how many people will lose their jobs over this? And this now means that those people who struggle to have even a few words with people now have an excuse not to talk at all. They can remain totally within their own little world and not interact with anyone in the library, before they at least had to say ‘hello’ to the person behind the counter and that little interchange is no longer there.