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Please watch: Why Libraries Matter

favicon When you have 10 minutes, please watch this excellent short film, “Why Libraries Matter,” about the New York Public Library. It’s by Julie Dressner and Jessie Hicks.

There are tons of great moments. My favorite: Isaiah, 9, who asks the librarian for “science books,” and later clarifies that he really means books about “mummies.”

That was great, right? I’d love to hear your thoughts. What was your favorite part? favicon


  1. Dave Keller

    This movie makes me want to go work for a library. However, when I see stories like this I think about the money. This made me wonder about how my city’s libraries are doing. We have more libraries per person than Manhattan but they don’t open before 10am, most close before 6pm and none are open more than 5 days a week. I worry about people like the single mom trying to finish classes on Library computers or the ELL students. Since financing struck me, I followed the money. Homeowners in my city pay $85 parcel tax per year for the libraries (multiple unit buildings pay $56). In 2014, 60% of library funding came from this parcel tax so I know Libraries are making due with little. A reason for library funding being low in CA is Prop 13 – a law that limited property taxes with a formula that has resulted in low revenues and unjust taxing. (For example, home A pays $8000 a year in property tax while next door home B (worth 100k more) pays $1200 per year. Sorry for the rant.) Maybe libraries should start selling crack to make money. Did anyone spot Heisenberg?

    • Mark Isero

      Great research, Dave. You’re totally right about funding. The libraries in SF are similar in that they’re great but they close early. Teachers tell students to go to the library to study and to use the Internet, except that’s impossible if the library is closed.

  2. micheleg

    I love this so much! I knew libraries were super great, but now I know they are THE BEST!
    The funding thing, of course, is not THE BEST. It’s actually really depressing. But maybe, before we start selling drugs to raise money for libraries, maybe we can keep spreading the word about how libraries are THE BEST and work toward keeping libraries open and available for everyone. Because libraries are THE BEST!
    Thanks for posting. I’m going to share it with everyone I know.

Please share your brilliant insights!