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Rants / Debates (Serious) > Should libraries block cell phones?

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message 1: by RandomAnthony (new)

RandomAnthony | 14536 comments A library in southeastern Wisconsin (right near where Jackie stayed, actually) is considering buying equipment that will block usage in the building:

http://www.jsonline.com/news/milwauke...

What do you think?


Jackie "the Librarian" | 8993 comments That's overkill, I think. They just need better signage saying not to use cell phones in the library, that staff can point to.


message 3: by Rebecca (new)

Rebecca White (rebecca_white) | 1028 comments I agree. I think it's better for society as a whole if people act well because they understand that it's more constructive rather than making it impossible to not act well. Hope that makes sense!


message 4: by Sarah (new)

Sarah | 13815 comments Also, there are emergencies. Emergencies in which, when you feel your (silenced) phone buzzing in your pocket, you walk out of the library to answer.


message 5: by Heidi (new)

Heidi (heidihooo) | 10825 comments How could they possibly add something to block cellphones without interrupting the internet inside the library?

Interrupting internet at the library would be VERY bad.


message 6: by Rebecca (new)

Rebecca White (rebecca_white) | 1028 comments And what if a shooter came in or something? There are always situations where it might be important to have a cell phone that we wouldn't even think of. If somebody had a heart attack it would be quicker for somebody a foot away to call 911 than take time to go to the desk.


message 7: by RandomAnthony (new)

RandomAnthony | 14536 comments Sarah Pi wrote: "Also, there are emergencies. Emergencies in which, when you feel your (silenced) phone buzzing in your pocket, you walk out of the library to answer."

Yeah, the say something about having phones there in case of emergency...but...can I call the library and say "could you find my son and bring him to the phone?" Would that be a good use of librarian time?


message 8: by Heidi (new)

Heidi (heidihooo) | 10825 comments RandomAnthony wrote: "Yeah, the say something about having phones there in case of emergency...but...can I call the library and say "could you find my son and bring him to the phone?" Would that be a good use of librarian time? "

It might be worth it to them for sheer entertainment value if it embarrasses him.


message 9: by RandomAnthony (new)

RandomAnthony | 14536 comments Ooh. I like the way you think, Heidi...


message 10: by Heidi (new)

Heidi (heidihooo) | 10825 comments If they have an intercom system, that'd be even better. :)


message 11: by Mary (new)

Mary (madamefifi) The thing about cell phone usage is, the people who are going to be inappropriate with them don't give a flying fuck about signs or frowning, scary librarians (vampire teeth or no) or anything else.


Jackie "the Librarian" | 8993 comments We can do more than just frown. We can ask you to come talk to us OUT IN THE HALLWAY. And you don't want that. ;)


message 13: by RandomAnthony (new)

RandomAnthony | 14536 comments You don't have to listen to librarians! They can't pull you in the hallway.

(Can they?)

Heh. I love how much Jackie values signage. If a cell phone went off, Jacks, would you point to the sign?


message 14: by Seizure Romero (new)

Seizure Romero | 97 comments I don't think libraries should block cell phones. Just people who use them in the library....

I'm at the library so often I should be collecting a salary (yes, I do straighten/shelve books if they're out of order near where I'm browsing. Magazines, too. Old habits...). The library is what-- 20,000 sq. ft. (?) surrounded by an entire city where people are able to talk, sing, play games and generally cause a ruckus at will. Is it really too much to ask that in this one relatively wee section of the planet people and their children just shut the fuck up while I'm trying to read?

*sigh*

Yes, there are signs. Irony of ironies, people in libraries seem unable to read them.

In my fantasy world (the other one, not the one where only polite & courteous people go to the library) the library is equipped with a giant grabber claw like in those arcade toy machines. When people talk too loud or yap on their cell phones the claw descends, picks them up by their apparently empty heads & flings them into the parking lot. Nearby patrons nod in satisfaction at an effectively executed library policy, and we all go back to our books.


message 15: by RandomAnthony (new)

RandomAnthony | 14536 comments Heh. Is there, like, a huge stuntperson landing pad in the parking lot?


message 16: by Gus (new)

Gus Sanchez (gussanchez) The iPhone has a library-usage feature that allows the user to block incoming calls and texts when you're in the library.

I don't think libraries should block cell phone usage. Cell phone users should exhibit common sense and courtesy when at the library; no one wants to hear about your shenanigans last night with Ray Ray and that skank ho Snookie.


message 17: by Seizure Romero (new)

Seizure Romero | 97 comments RandomAnthony wrote: "Heh. Is there, like, a huge stuntperson landing pad in the parking lot?"

Ummm... no. Pavement landings only for rude people. Does that make me a horrible person?

I mean, I'm ok with that. I'm just checking.


message 18: by Jonathan (last edited May 05, 2010 07:33PM) (new)

Jonathan Lopez | 4728 comments I often use the art reference room at the main branch of the New York Public Library on 42nd Street. It's a pretty serious research library, and there's almost never any problem with cell phones or loud talking--on the part of the patrons, at least.

There is, however, one staff member, a woman in her mid-fifties or so, who has a habit of taking personal calls when she is working at the reference desk. Her voice is incredibly loud and shrill, and she has one of those old fashioned New York accents like you hear in movies from the '40s and '50s. Her conversations, aside from being conducted at an inappropriately high volume, are also notable for being entirely uninteresting.

She has a position of some authority, apparently, so none of the younger staff members (who are all great, by the way) can do anything about the noise, although they do roll their eyes. I've taken to wearing earplugs when she's there. Very irritating. But I guess you can't ban a librarian from a library, can you?


message 19: by Dr. Detroit (new)

Dr. Detroit | 6030 comments I'm leaning toward being OK with this. Whenever my wife calls me and I'm at the library, I cringe.


message 20: by Youndyc (new)

Youndyc | 1255 comments People give me approving looks when I stand outside the library finishing a cell phone conversation before I enter. Or perhaps they are just checking me out. Hmmm. Mystery. Haha!

But, hell, yes, jam the signal if they want. But I imagine the money could be better spent.


message 21: by Ashley (new)

Ashley (asherly) Absolutely! I work at a library and they just changed the rules to allow people to talk on their phones. They see it like, the library staff uses phones (its a business matter we kinda have to) but it's a library, people! So now I have to listen to everyone's conversations, annoying ringtones, and all their complaining. Its like, do people believe in privacy? I hate it when people hear my conversations.


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