Originally Posted by Ken Maltby
Hmm... why were public libraries established in the first place? Was it intended that
they become an entertainment facility? Is the library there to dispense government
approved leisure activity? (Perhaps to the Greeks and Romans, but why were they
included in modern societies?)
I always thought, at least here in the USA, they were intended to provide for an
informed citizenry, a place of study to allow access to the knowledge and history
contained in the very rare and relatively expensive tombs of the day. (I doubt that
the "Penny Dreadfuls", and Panflits were allowed in the earlier libraries.)
It may be that the current afterschool daycare facilities that we are calling Libraries
have devolved to a point that they can not in anyway compete with the internet as
a source of the information and study material for today's citizenry.
I personally do not rate the services provided by our current community based library
system, with a small library in every neighborhood, as anywhere as effective as access
to the intenet, for the original purpose of providing for an informed citizenry. I find it
troubling that we should want them to be provided to us as a source of "free"
entertainment, from our governmental structure.