Cabecera. Bibliotecario. Por Edgardo Civallero

el futuro nos los hacemos o nos lo hacenun blog profesional editado desde 2015

Critical notes

Librarian robots?

Critical notes (02)


"Developing a service robot for a children's library" is an article published in 2014 in the Journal of the Association for Information Science and Technology. The article has been widely disseminated and celebrated through blogs, social networks and international librarian discussion forums, since it seems to show the bright future of libraries and LIS.

Apparently, there are countries in the world where there are no librarians available: all of them have very good jobs. To fill vacancies in libraries, they are forced to build robots.

Or it may be that in these countries librarians (particularly children's librarians) are so bad at doing their jobs, they have such mediocre qualities and poor backgrounds, that they prefer their children to grow up socializing with a machine when they visit a library, instead of dealing with human beings.

Or, maybe, we librarians are being replaced by more manageable, efficient and economical machinery, while at the same time getting our younger generations to grow up interacting with screens and robots. We prepare them for that utopian future in which we will be almost-cybernetic, almost immortal organisms, and we will live in space, among the stars.

All this, it seems, looks very promising for the future of librarianship as a discipline, and for that of its workers and professionals. And, of course, for the entire Humankind.

[What about a little analysis of necessities and possibilities first? What about some critical thought, some ethical evaluation, some professional multidisciplinary discussion? What about evaluating if everything looking "shiny", "roboty", "modern"• and "techy" may be actually useful, helpful, healthy and good for libraries and their users, before blindly embracing it? Or are these too many questions to answer, in a world more and more used to go fast and not to lose time, not even to answer vital questions?]


Note belonging to the series Critical notes.


About the post

Text: Edgardo Civallero.

Picture: Filmnosis (link).


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