Young babies and toddlers can sometimes be loud in the library. They scream and run around, often disrupting real patrons’ placid library experience. Parents have no control. These little menaces really have no place in our buildings. NO BABIES OR TODDLERS IN THE LIBRARY!!
Is there any library that would dare post this sign or slide down this slippery slope thought process? No library would post a sign like this, but plenty of library think like this, right? Replace “babies” with “cell phones” and see what happens.
Cell phones can sometimes be loud in the library. They ring loudly, often disrupting patrons’ placid library experience. People have no control. These little menaces really have no place in our buildings. NO CELL PHONES IN THE LIBRARY!!
Not too far from what we really see in practice, eh?
The point that I’m sure I’ve written about here before is that if librarians are going to take up this issue they need to concentrate on patron behavior, not specific devices. These devices can be used silently in a multitude of ways, just like babies and toddlers can be in the library without screaming. And if *gasp* on occasion a baby screams or someone’s phone plays the “La Macarena,” so what? It is simply part of this wonderful and sometimes messy existence in the Public. If you wouldn’t dare put up a sign like the one above, you similarly shouldn’t put up such a sign about a phone. After all, more people enter your building with a phone than a baby. Won’t somebody please think of the cell phones?
Note: This morning I had the idea to start a repository of good, positive signage for libraries. I might still make some signs that people can use to replace their crummy, mean signs in the upcoming days but I got sidetracked with this!