Archive for March 8th, 2013

Cites & Insights 13:4 (April 2013) available

Friday, March 8th, 2013

After three Big Serious Issues in a row, and with a Big Serious Essay on the Mythical Public Library coming up in May, it’s time for a little break…

The April 2013 Cites & Insights (13:4) is now available for downloading at

It’s 34 pages.

The 6×9″ single-column “online version,” optimized for e-reading, is also available at and is 63 pages.

The issue includes:

The Front (pp. 1-2)

The Year of Both? My possibly-too-hopeful sense that more and more sensible people, and even some pundits, are recognizing that ebooks and print books are both likely to have substantial roles going forward.

The Middle: Deathwatch 2013! (pp. 2-19)

Catching up with the doomcryers (excluding print books–but see below).

Words: The Death of Books (or Not)  (pp. 19-27)

 What it says.

The Back (pp. 27-34)

Catching up with miscellaneous snarkiness through 2011 (and more recently for magazine items).


Rhode Island public libraries

Friday, March 8th, 2013

Another post commenting on Chapter 20 of Give Us a Dollar and We’ll Give You Back Four (2012-13)–now available as a $9.99 Kindle ebook or $21.95 paperback with ISBN 978-1481279161 on Amazon, along with the usual Lulu options. Note that Lulu prices for the paperback and hardback versions are now lower.

Of 43 Rhode Island libraries profiled (five were omitted), the bulk have either moderate or mediocre funding: 14 (33%) spend between $36 and $52.99 while 17 (40%) spend $21 to $30.99. None are at the very bottom; none are near the top ($53 to $72.99), but four are in the top bracket.

Circulation is fairly typical through the top, but only two libraries circulate fewer than four items per capita (that is, 5%, compared to 21% overall). Patron visits are just a bit low, but program attendance is distinctly low, with only 9% of the libraries achieving 0.5 or more attendance per capita (compared to 33% overall). PC use is also low, with 26% reporting at least 1.3 uses per capita (compared to 43% overall).

Libraries by legal service area

LSA Count % Outliers
700-1,149 0.0% 1
3,000-3,999 1 2.3%
4,000-5,299 1 2.3%
5,300-6,799 3 7.0%
6,800-8,699 4 9.3%
8,700-11,099 5 11.6%
11,100-14,099 2 4.7%
14,100-18,499 6 14.0% 1
18,500-24,999 7 16.3%
25,000-34,499 6 14.0% 2
34,500-53,999 3 7.0%
54,000-104,999 3 7.0% 1
105,000-4.1 mill. 2 4.7%

Circulation per capita and spending per capita

Circulation per capita correlates very strongly (0.75) with spending per capita.

Circulation per capita plotted against spending per capita

Circulation per capita (rounded) occurrence by spending category

There are no libraries in the $5-$11 and $53-$72 range, but the legends appear for consistency.