Overheard a couple arguing this week in front of me. The guy was saying that they could just use Google and didn’t need to swing by the Reference Desk; the woman disagreed. I told him that it’s true if you’re looking up a phone number or some basic information. If he’s doing research, I reminded him that anyone can publish something online and that my job is to help evaluate the good from the BS.
The man signed onto a computer to search while the woman let me look up information on a medical procedure. Guess who found reliable, relevant information while someone else was still browsing around the .coms?
Yes, accessibility to information has become more widespread, and yes, we’re in a do-it-yourself culture. But at what point will this attitude start to dismantle our ability to form a community?