Kansas: Topeka & Shawnee County Public Library’s Cord Cutting Puts End to Unofficial Sports Viewing Events
In February, the [Topeka and Shawnee County Public Library] stopped providing regular cable television access. While the facility still has its cable set up, the removal three months ago of the last television from a corner in the first-floor media room near the center of the building effectively ended the service’s usefulness. The decision was the result of a 2014 community survey where more than 800 Shawnee County residents told the library it should focus on literacy, lifelong learning and community support, according to Topeka and Shawnee County Public Library CEO Gina Millsap.
That decision upset [Tom] Shadoin. He and a group of about 10 others used the location to view two to three Royals games per week and every Kansas City Chiefs contest until the latter’s season ended in January. Both sides acknowledge the cramped media room was not an ideal location, but Shadoin’s frustration stems from what he sees as an unclear policy on what exactly constitutes promotion of literacy at the library, which offers everything from arts and crafts workshops to monthly classic movie viewings to an area with two flat-screen TVs for teens to play video games.
Shadoin contends that none of those offerings promote literacy, which he feels creates a double standard in the library’s explanation of why a cable viewing area is not in its plans.
Shadoin has filed a petition with the library.
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About Gary Price
Gary Price (firstname.lastname@example.org) is a librarian, writer, consultant, and frequent conference speaker based in the Washington D.C. metro area. He earned his MLIS degree from Wayne State University in Detroit. Price has won several awards including the SLA Innovations in Technology Award and Alumnus of the Year from the Wayne St. University Library and Information Science Program. From 2006-2009 he was Director of Online Information Services at Ask.com. Gary is also the co-founder of infoDJ an innovation research consultancy supporting corporate product and business model teams with just-in-time fact and insight finding.