Mar 022011

I’ve been following the #hcod debate with fascination and frustration. I love seeing so many people contributing to the conversation, but I am disheartened to hear people say things like, “we need a seat at the table”. We can sit at the table any time that we choose. We do not need an invitation.

If you’re having a conversation or expressing your opinion about #hcod, whether electronically or in person, then you have taken your place at the table. Please use it wisely. Comments that consist of nothing but contempt or vitriol make us look like we have terrible table manners (Sorry, but I couldn’t resist!).

If we can agree that we have a seat at the table then we don’t need to create or utilize a cooperative, consortia, or organization to speak on our behalf. If we want change, then we need to change. The old models of getting things done won’t work for our vendors, nor will they work for us.

In order to move forward in the discussion and present our case for whatever solution we choose¬† (as a group or as individual libraries) we need more information. Let’s start by obtaining the exact wording of the proposed changes. Without this it is nearly impossible to negotiate.

We also need as many facts and statistics about what is true for our libraries when it comes to eBooks, especially in regards to cost and circulation.

Furthermore, what do we know about the eBook and eReader markets as a whole? Is your community different than what the national surveys suggest?

We are librarians. Let’s get the information that we need to negotiate on behalf of our communities and the foundation upon which the institution itself was built.

Please, take a seat.