Saturday, April 17, 2010

THERE'S AN APP (Shhh), sorry, there's an app for that.

Librarians want you to know that you all are too loud. But different librarians will deal with you differently.

The blog Closed Stacks says, "when patrons are being loud or don’t get off the phone quickly – to deal with this I have developed a hand gesture/whisper shushing method that is usually fairly inoffensive."

I am not a woman and I don't pretend to be a woman, for less than $500. So I don't know how difficult it might be for women to get library patrons to shut up. All I know is that I look like a crazy person who stores body parts in the staff refrigerator in bags marked "giblets." So most people listen to me. I also never ask people to comply with policy. I don't ask anyone to talk quietly; I tell them to end the call or take it outside. I'm not the effing librarian because I picked the name out of the dictionary.

But, and this is a big "But," I rarely tell someone to take it outside until another patron has complained. I don't care how loud you are unless it bothers others. (Mostly.)

But "Closed Stacks" brings up the point that this is a constant battle for librarians, so is there a cell phone application that can get this shushing job done for us? Is there something that monitors the voices on the call and interjects a pleasant "Shhhh" when they get too loud?

Can we force a download as each person enters the building? Or maybe the app could just be a fun, free app that people want to download, like maybe Halle Berry could say, "Oh, baby, say it softer," Arnold Schwarzenegger could bark, "Shut up, asshole," and Samuel L. Jackson says, "Keep it down, motherfucker."

I think this could be something. A shushing app could work. Or I could just continue to smack them in the head with a phone book and point to the door. Oh, didn't I mention the phone book?