New e-book released showing the importance of public library computers
Short Stories from the People's Network
Computers in public libraries: Local examples tell a national story
A new book highlighting the importance of the Peoples Network – the national
network of free internet-connected computers in public libraries – will be
officially launched at the CILIP conference in Manchester.
Detailing the experiences of library staff and users in ten Local Authorities, Short Stories from the People’s
Network demonstrates how computers in libraries continue to offer
their communities a lifeline for many critical tasks that can now only be
achieved with internet access.
The book is published by Lorensbergs, provider of netloan library PC software,
and endorsed by CILIP, the library and information association. It was
conceived and published as a response to the persistent need to support
internet access for those lacking digital literacy skills, home computers or
broadband. Despitesome assumptions that it’s now easy for everyone to get
online, the evidence from these accounts points to a service that remains
absolutely essential to its millions of users.
Nick Poole, CILIP Chief Executive, who provides a foreword to the book, says:
“As it approaches its 20th anniversary, it can be easy to forget
just how essential the Peoples Network really is. At CILIP, we’re committed to
achieving a thriving library and information sector at the heart of Britain’s
social, cultural and economic life. The People’s Network is at the very core of
that vision, providing millions of hours of supported internet access every
year. I hope that this fantastic book drives more recognition and support of
this much-needed part of our national digital infrastructure.”
The book has been warmly welcomed by library heads and campaigners for raising
the profile of an essential national resource. As well as evidencing the work
undertaken by libraries in advancing digital skills nationally, it provides
examples of how computers and other technologies in libraries inspire their
customers with code clubs, 3D and wireless printing, and a trove of online
reference materials. The e-book version is available at www.lorensbergs.co.uk/short-stories-from-the-peoples-network.
The CILIP Conference takes place on the 5 and 6 July
in Manchester. It brings information, library and knowledge professionals
together to discuss, understand and share insight into the key issues for the
sector. Keynote speakers include Dr Carla Hayden, the 14th Librarian of
Congress, and the first African American and first female to be appointed to
the prestigious role; Luciano Floridi, Professor of Philosophy and Ethics of
Information at the Oxford Internet Institute; and Neil MacInnes, Strategic Lead
for Libraries, Galleries and Culture at Manchester City Council.