A couple of years ago a funny video made the rounds of library-oriented email lists. Students and faculty of the University of Washington Information School produced a parody of Lady Gaga’s “Poker Face.” The new words urged listeners to use library resources if they want to find information instead of becoming overwhelmed by search results.
I recently remembered it and wondered what other clever, entertaining videos other librarians have produced. A You Tube search turned up several, of course, but I found three videos with titles that start “Librarians do. . .” What a great set!
Why do librarians take all the time and effort to devise, rehearse, and produce these these elaborate parodies? Several answers immediately come to mind.
- They can. Librarians come to the profession from a dizzying variety of backgrounds. In what other profession outside the entertainment industry itself could you find people with all the skills necessary to bring it off?
- Librarians are very creative and fun-loving. That’s not their reputation. I noticed several made by people who seem to think that a librarian sits around reading books and telling people to be quiet One even featured an ill-mannered loudmouth with bad hair and unattractive clothes. If librarians make the videos themselves, they can portray themselves however they want.
- Humorous videos can serve as a very effective marketing tool to attract people to come to their local library and get a library card or to encourage people more generally to take advantage of library services
So what do librarians do? Here are three answers.