Monday, June 22, 2009

Word is getting out

Word is getting out.

Late Friday, after everyone had started their weekend, after the news cycle had ended and most reporters were wrapping up their week, Governor Ted Strickland announced his proposed biennium Ohio state budget for fiscal years 2010-2011.

Strickland's budget director informed Ohio Library Council director Lynda Murray of the pending cuts to Ohio's libraries before his Friday afternoon press conferrence. For most of the weekend, only Library Journal had the story up.

That's changing. Now, many libraries around the state have posted the news to their websites, front and center where something this drastic needs to be. Facebook is exploding with the news, especially Governor Strickland's own page. Now the regular news sites are catching up.

The Ashtabula Star-Beacon in northeast Ohio chimed in with a story about its area's library directors holding an emergency meeting Sunday. Springfield, down toward the opposite corner of the state, has an article that says the Clark County Public Library faces a $2.5 million budget shortfall thanks to the proposed budget. Even the Daily Kos has a thread about the impending doom Ohio's libraries face.

The news isn't out there enough, though. Let's keep it going. If you know someone in the media, tell them what's going on. No matter what the outcome, this is a juicy story for the media. It's got all sides -- a supposedly benevolent governor suddenly pulling the rug out from under a successful social service, hundreds of librarians mobilizing in grassroots efforts, outraged patrons, a collapsing economy. Whatever happens, the media can run with this for awhile.

Let them know.

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