Lately, there have been many conversations in Falmouth about the viability of libraries in general and the need for more space at the Falmouth Memorial Library in particular. These discussions are essential for an informed voting public. It is equally critical that the following points are part of the dialog:
• Libraries provide access to a wealth of information. Libraries will continue to provide books, but they are also at the forefront of providing access to well-organized, authoritative resources far superior to the chaotic morass of information available through a general search on the Internet. The usage of libraries is increasing so sharply because they provide the personal guiding service Amazon, Google, etc. cannot.
• Amazon has 30 million customers. U.S. public libraries have 148 million library cardholders.
• Each day, U.S. libraries circulate nearly four times more items than Amazon handles.
• Membership in the Falmouth Memorial Library has increased by 191 percent since 1996.
• The number of people served by the Falmouth Memorial Library has increased by 112 percent since 1996 and the circulation of items has increased by 158 percent. But the size of the collection has only increased by 50 percent due to lack of space.
We are changing and growing to accommodate the needs of the population of Falmouth, but in order to do that we need space to serve the increasing demands of our community. Please remember the above points as you review your choices when you vote on June 8.
Chantal Walker, president
Falmouth Memorial Library trustees