Thanks for the very informative editorial reprinted in the Opinion section on Aug. 17 on the Timberland Regional Library system. I have been wondering for years what was wrong with the local libraries. Now I know. It’s not a library anymore, it’s an entertainment and social center.

I went to the Centralia library the other day. Upon entering, I found a card table set up just inside the entryway and several people playing a board game. Are board games an efficient use of library space? I don’t think so.

It’s difficult to get an actual book from the library, but the catalog lists electronic media by the dozens. What happens to those patrons who don’t have computers and the other various electronic devices? I have a Kindle and a computer but it’s difficult to read lengthy books on them. If there is an actual printed book, there is only one copy, you’re put on hold and wait weeks to get the book. Or you have to go through the cumbersome Interlibrary Loan System and wait six to eight weeks or longer.   

The self checkout stations are limited to two, opposite the checkout stations are two lounge chairs. Why do they need lounge chairs? How about just a couple of comfortable chairs so someone can sit down and look a book over while deciding whether or not to check it out? If they want to lounge they can go home.  

There are six or eight computer stations which are always busy. What are the people using these stations doing? Surfing the net? Researching? Or watching porn? Too many of them are watching porn and I don’t think the taxpayers should be providing that service. The library has enough computers, enough electronic services. They need more books.


Mary Chandler


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(1) comment


I totally disagree with your rather snarky assessment-- libraries have always been the social centers of the community-- and what are books, if not entertaining! While I recognize and share your love of books, I have not experienced the long waits you describe for hard copies-- not sure why that is, but that is the single worthy complaint I recognize as valid. This is the 21st century and the libraries are trying to engage students and people of all ages-- so yes, there are games and computers...and lounge chairs so that people can feel (GASP!) comfortable. I also question your account of porn on the library computers-- I believe it is totally made up.Prove it!! Sounds to me like someone who's a bit cranky because she didn't get as fast a service as she thinks she is entitled to and who is lashing out at the library system with unproven and rather serious unfounded accusations. TRL is trying hard to provide something for everyone, but I am quite certain that porn is not on their subscription lists nor would it get through their security systems. Stick to valid critiques and not made-up and easily proven false accusations. For goodness sake, calm down and read a good book!

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