Libraries and the Business Community: A Success Story

Libraries exist to help people succeed, and the business world is no exception. Many aspiring business owners got their start in a public library, whether through researching how to write a business plan, attending a class on Quickbooks, or developing a marketing list using the library’s electronic resources.

An Entrepreneur’s Guide to Working in the Library

The number of freelancers, solopreneurs, remote workers and independent professionals is growing, and they need a place to work. One study predicts that over 40 percent of the U.S. workforce will be a contingent worker by 2020. Many of these independent professionals work from home, but that can be distracting and isolating. Many work from coworking spaces, but these can be cost-prohibitive for some entrepreneurs just starting out. One of the best-kept entrepreneurial workspace secrets is the library. With free wifi, an abundance of business resources and a variety of spaces to work, the library is the perfect spot to get a business off the ground.

The Voice of the Market! — Library Editorial Cartoon

“Earlier this year Mick Mulvaney, the Director of the Office of Management and Budget, submitted the budget proposal for the coming year to Congress. Among many huge cuts to programs for education, arts and humanities, and scientific research was the elimination of $231 Million from the Institute of Museums and Libraries. The IMLS provides vital services to libraries across the country, including Interlibrary Loan, which allows libraries to share resources and expand information access to their patrons. This cartoons aims to mock the attitude that trivializes the need people have for information, especially in our age of isolated information bubbles. And beyond that, to encourage you to contact your Congressperson and urge them to support the IMLS.” — Kevin Moore is EveryLibrary’s 2017 Artist in Residence. Join the fight to resist the cuts to the IMLS at!

Ode to the Occasional Library User

There are people who come into the library consistently every day or every week. We librarians can usually greet them by name when they enter. These power users are known to us because through chatting with them regularly, we get to know what’s happening in their lives. We also develop a solid sense of what they like to read or do at the library. Not unlike an episode of Cheers, there are plenty of these regulars at most libraries. This is not an ode to them.

Your Family History Quest Should Start with the Library!

In an ever-changing world, there’s a special feeling of security that comes from identifying one’s place in history. Many people, in search of a factual self-concept have caught themselves asking the question: “Who were those that came before me?” Certainly, most would agree that it can be challenging, but worthwhile, to discover who your grandparents, great grandparents, and relatives even further back, were. This is especially true if you have an inkling that they were smart and popular people in their time.

Library Visits Have Gone Way Up Over the Last Two Decades. Here’s Why…

Fact: Between 1990 and 2014, visits to public libraries grew by a whopping 181%. For context, the population of the United States increased by 28% during that period. Why have so many more people been using their libraries in the last two decades? Here’s what I think…

How To Get Year-Old Son to Read Something: 13 Tips for Frustrated Parents

Is getting your 10 year-old son to read an exercise in futility? Is he a good reader but he refuses to read unless forced into it? You’re not alone.

Libraries: Championing Human Heritage and Memory Since Ancient Times

Ruins of the Library of Celsus at Ephesus under a dusk sky. One of the biggest libraries of the ancient world, it was built to hold up to 12,000 scrolls. Image: (cc) Austrian Archaeological Institute

Need Market Research? Ask a Librarian!

I’m just going to say it straight out: Small business owners that are not using the library for market research are either throwing money away, leaving money on the table, or both.

5 Important Ways Libraries Are Getting Kids Excited About Science!

When word got out that libraries across the country were giving away eclipse glasses in advance of the August 21 solar eclipse, our phone started ringing off the hook. Teachers and parents, in particular, were eager to jump on the chance to engage kids in some real-world science and perhaps even inspire a life-long interest in astronomy. The fact that the eclipse promised to be a unique and memorable experience also made it all the more appealing to grab a pair of solar viewers and join the fun.