So, the report was released Monday, and it’s actually titled Perceptions of Libraries and Information Resources (2005), but the part I’m highlighting here is the results of the question that asked users to compare their experiences with search engines against their experiences with libraries.
Here’s the quesiton:
Satisfaction with the Librarian and the Search Engine — by Total Respondents
Based on the most recent search you conducted through [search engine used most recently],how satisfied were you in each of the following areas?
Base: Respondents who have used a search engine.
Based on your most recent experience seeking assistance from a librarian for help with a search or locating information,how satisfied were you in each of the following areas?
Base: Respondents who have used a librarian.
It appears on page 22 of part two.
Sadly, search engines beat libraries on all four points: volume, quality, speed, and overall experience. These numbers are alarming, and many will see this wrongly. The correct way to see this is how much value search engines can bring to the library experience.