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February 16, 2011 / Brent Sears

Guitar Hero Tournament – Hosted at the Library!?

A few months back I was driving by my local public library, and as usual I glanced at the announcement sign out front.  It read, Guitar Hero Tournament Monday Night. How I avoided driving my car off the street and into a telephone pole I still don’t know.  At first I wondered if it was a joke.  Did some high school volunteer think it would be funny to steal the sign key and announce a video game competition?

How is it that old mortal enemies, libraries and video games, are now joining together in my town?  Aren’t children supposed to turn off their video games and read a good book?  Sort of like vegetables for the mind, books are good for you, and like junk food, video games rot your mind.

The reality is that libraries were build as information centers in an era when acquiring knowledge was hard to do.  They were necessary to the growth and development of a community because there were no better options.  But the Internet has changed all that, and libraries are changing with it.

We are undergoing a shift from paper to digital, and you can see it at the library.  Instead of choosing from the content housed in one building, we can now choose from an entire system and network of books, audiobooks, digital books, CD’s, and DVDs; but no video games that I know of.  Maybe they were looking to expand their offerings at my local branch?

More and more computer terminals will be added as time goes on, and fewer and fewer paper books will be leaving the shelfs.  It leaves me to wonder, will libraries turn into knowledge-based community centers that house tournaments, eBook Clubs, and local groups who gather around a certain information platform?  If so, then I say it’s great, because isn’t that what a library was meant to do anyway?

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