Expect More at SXSW


The Digital Public Library of America announced the availability of LibraryBoxes throughout the SXSW conference (and Austin). Folks can connect wirelessly to these boxes and download books, videos and other digital files. We’ve included my Expect More book for those attending the conference. Thanks to Rachel Frick and Margy Avery for making this happen. Enjoy.

More can be found on their blog post: DPLA, LIBRARYBOX AND SXSWI (http://blogs.law.harvard.edu/dplaalpha/2013/03/09/dpla-librarybox-and-sxswi/?utm_source=dlvr.it&utm_medium=twitter)

3 Replies to “Expect More at SXSW”

  1. I made one of these and I think it is neat. But I have been contemplating that LibraryBox is a fork of PirateBox, which allows for two-way file sharing where LibraryBox’s model is distribution-only.

    I can see how an institution would prefer this because it removes risk and liability. The individuals creating LibraryBoxen, such as myself, however, are frequently creating them as personal, not institutional projects.

    At the same time, many of these institutions are considering maker spaces, and LITA is pushing them as a topic for 2013 Forum. And perhaps the risks and liabilities around maker spaces are different than around file sharing, but I daresay they aren’t easier to mitigate.

    It seems entirely appropriate that DPLA would embrace them, but I’m not so sure about SXSW.

    Is the message – or lesson – that libraries are, in essence, conservative distribution networks?

    Taking your frequent quip that it is librarians that make libraries, not materials, I have to wonder, what are we librarians thinking?

    1. Wow…that is a lot to think about. I honestly haven’t spent too much time looking into LibraryBoxes, but the one way transmittal is problematic. My main fear is that librarians set up all these services to try attract the community, without making the community part of rolling them out (and therefore the decision on one-way versus two-way sharing). I had the same thoughts about the Little libraries. I love the idea, and want librarians involved, and helping stock them and picking locations with the community would be a way to do it.

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