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support CADL Support CADL is a website that is all about library advocacy, particularly for the Capital Area District Library. If  you’re interested in reading about library millages and seeing what one library’s advocacy group is doing to promote their library, this is the place to go.

A Bit About Library Millage Campaigns and Social Media

Library millage campaigns are actually very interesting. A lot of people don’t realize that when a library is up for a millage election or renewal, the library and its staff, whose fates are at stake, are not allowed to advocate for a yes vote. They’re allowed to educate their community that a millage is in fact happening, but they’re not allowed to say, “For the love of god, vote yes so I can continue to provide for my family!” isn’t run by staff paid and on the clock. It’s run by volunteers, many of whom also work full-time, some at the library, some not.

Earlier I mentioned how interesting millage campaigns are – they get even more interesting when social media elements are involved. Social media really does muddy would-be crystal clear lines between the on-the-clock library awareness campaign and the volunteer-based advocacy (“Vote yes!”) group. Does a patron comment on an official (on-the-clock) library blog post saying, “You’ve got my vote!” constitute breaking the vitally important rules? If someone Tweeted, “You’ve got my vote!” would this still be an issue?

I’m inclined to say that, unless a comment is coming from a library’s staff member, it’s not rule-breaking. The comment didn’t originate from a library source. The library can’t claim responsibility for something Bonnie Readsalot says on their page.

There’s more than one side to this sticky issue. What do you all think?