So while discussing funding troubles in libraries and such in class, and also with my group, I had an interesting thought. It piggy-backed somewhat on the professor’s only half-joking idea: put slot machines in libraries. Funding, it gets people into the library, all good things. Well, okay, they’re noisy, but librarians are less concerned about noise these days than in the past… And the other problem, addiction, was as the professor said no problem at all: what in the library isn’t addictive? Books? Movies? Music? The Internet? I’m sure we could find a really boring book, but still, it is a point. By no means a bulletproof argument, but a point.
My idea, however, was laundry machines in a library. Those things must make money (I mean, they charge how much???), and it would give people something to do while doing laundry. Funding… gets people in the library… check, check. The downsides are unfortunately case-by-case: space restraints and security. You want them somewhere where you’re not worried about flooding books and electronics, after all. And people aren’t going to use them if they are scared for their clothes – much as I don’t use the laundry machines in my apartment complex. But a laundry room, with some nearby computers with headphones, for maybe a movie or some music, and some seats for reading in, could be a great combination.