June 24, 2008


“Librarians must work harder at reinforcing the rules for quiet. There are too many students using cell phones and talking in groups around computer kiosks in the library. They must be told that this is inappropriate. It seems as if they are simply allowed to talk as obnoxiously as they desire until patrons themselves ask for quiet. This is wrong.”


Thanks for letting us know about your concerns. One of the most difficult hurdles in managing any modern library is to make space for the many uses patrons have for it. We want to make sure there is room for both the student who is here to study in silence as well as the groups that need to collaborate around a computer. We have tried to accomplish this at Ebling by making the 2nd floor a “conversational” area — library users are welcome to talk in normal conversational-level voices as long as they don’t disturb their neighbors — while keeping the third floor a quiet/silent area, where users are asked to use hushed voices and conversations are discouraged. Does this work? For the most part, it does. Most of our users respect the different zones and try to maintain a sound level appropriate to that area. This is not to say that we don’t have a few folk who talk loudly from time-to-time, especially in the conversational area. We work at reminding these folks that this is a multi-use library and will ask them to leave the Library until they’re finished with their phone conversation. We can’t be everywhere so if you are ever bothered by another library user’s actions, please feel free to let us know at the Service Desk. We’re happy to be of assistance however we can.