Reality Bites & How You can Change it

First off today, I have to give props out to Tom H. who has been awesome in commenting on this blog. Thank you! I am so glad someone is reading and enjoying the posts.

Now to the main topic today: reality bites. That sounds a little pessimistic, doesn’t it? Well, some parts of reality really do bite–like povery, global warming, students cheating, librarians thinking that they can be outsourced and the fact that I haven’t been able to find veggie gyoza at Trader Joe’s for the last 3 weeks.

But parts of reality rock–like Jim Butcher having two new books coming out, people helping out because it is the right thing to do, librarians helping to Rock the Vote, and autumn weather that is warm during the day but perfect for a quilt at night.

So what specifically made me write this type of post today? Two things, actually.

First this YouTube video on cheating that has been going around the Internet. I found out through Tame the Web blog and you can see it here. Did she even think about the consequences of posting this video on YouTube? I mean, it is scary that students are posting videos about how to cheat and the comments to these videos are even scarier. I really dislike the “but everyone else is doing it” defense. No, they are not and cheating is just plain wrong. I am going to show this to my Information Literacy class so we can discuss the implications of the video. But I’m not completely disheartened by this because I still believe that most students are honest and hard-working when they are doing their school work.

Anyone read the latest Backtalk column in Library Journal (October 1, 2008 edition)? Another person who is pessimistic about the future of librarianship–believing that we have caused ourselves to become obsolete through our increased reliance on technology. While I agree that the human touch is very important in what we do as librarians, I don’t believe that technology can be considered the downfall of the profession or libraries in general. Though, I may be a little biased in this as I am an Online Literacy librarian. I think technology, if anything, has made our role as librarians even more important for the efficient finding, analyzing and evaluating of information. I don’t feel obsolete and I am proud of my work as a librarian. What do you think?

I think that our perceptions truly become our reality. If we think we are obsolete, we will fulfill that thought. But if we truly believe that librarians are important, than our thoughts and subsequent actions will make it so. Yes, it is annoying to answer the tenth question in an hour about the location of the bathroom. But we also help people with so many important questions and concerns. We also design websites that are accessible, have events that gather together communities and help students find information that is personally relevant to them. And through these actions, we change reality into something better.

And to end on a somewhat positive note, the Wednesday post of this blog will be in support of Blog Action Day 2008 where bloggers around the world are going to be posting only about poverty for one day in order to raise awareness and hopefully get people to help end world-wide poverty. We can all do something to better ourselves, our communities, our libraries and our world, if we only work together.