Effects of technology on Appleton Public Library usage / by Tom Roessler

Did you know that the Appleton Public Library has seen a 65% decline in public internet computer usage?  Also, did you know that downloadable material has increased 1567% since 2004?  At the same time APL print circulation has decreased 35%.  Read on to find additional details.   

Increased availability of downloadable e-books, e-audiobooks, and e-videos through the Appleton Public Library since 2009 and the technology which makes them easily accessible has resulted in a significant reduction in library circulation of printed materials, number of printed books owned, and library visits. In addition, the accessibility of the internet via smart phones, tablets, and personal computers along with the proliferation of WIFI hotspots has resulted in a decreased need for library owned internet computers and has also decreased the need to visit the library to do research.

Supporting facts:  

·     APL availability of downloadable e-books has increased 1567% since 2004.  

·     APL circulation of e-books from 2013 to 2017 has increased 93% (no data available prior to 2013).  

·     APL circulation of printed material has decreased 35% since 2009.

·     Visits to the APL are down 21% since 2009.

·     APL total printed volumes owned are down 21% since 2009.

·     Appleton Public Library has seen a 65% reduction of public internet computer sessions from 194,000 to 68,000 sessions since 2004. 

References:  Wisconsin Public Library Service data 1996 – 2017 (https://dpi.wi.gov/pld/data-reports/service-data); Additional statistical information obtained from the Appleton Public library staff.