Circulation desk at the University of Texas at Arlington's Central Library
Circulation desk at the University of Texas at Arlington's Central Library

Library circulation or library lending comprises the activities around the lending of library books and other material to users of a lending library. A circulation or lending department is one of the key departments of a library.

The main public service point is the circulation desk or loans desk, usually found near the main entrance of a library. It provides lending services and facilities for return of loaned items. Renewal of materials and payment of fines are also handled at the circulation desk. [1] Circulation staff may provide basic search and reference services, though more in-depth questions are usually referred to reference librarians at the library reference desk. The circulation desk is in most cases staffed by library support staff instead of professional librarians.

Functions of circulation desk staff

A date due slip showing checkout and return activity from 1983 to 1996
A date due slip showing checkout and return activity from 1983 to 1996
Date due slip from Harvard's Lamont Library
Date due slip from Harvard's Lamont Library

Intellectual Freedom Committee

Public service librarians must look to the law to determine their legal obligations and potential liability relating to privacy of library use. The potential liability or punishment for librarians, who fail to protect confidentiality of individual library use, is largely a matter of state law without record of prosecution or civil suit. Remedies for individuals whose information has been deliberately shared with or unknowingly collected by third parties vary widely and are sometimes unclear.

Established December 1, 1967, the Office for Intellectual Freedom is charged with implementing American Library Association (ALA) policies. Those policies concerning the concept of intellectual freedom as embodied in the Library Bill of Rights, the Association’s basic policy on free access to libraries and library materials.

Library Bill of Rights

The American Library Association affirms that all libraries are forums for information and ideas, and that the following basic policies should guide their services.

Adopted June 19, 1939, by the ALA Council; amended October 14, 1944; June 18, 1948; February 2, 1961; June 27, 1967; January 23, 1980; January 29, 2019; inclusion of “age” reaffirmed January 23, 1996.[2]

See also

References

  1. ^ "Circulation". Kent State University. Kent State University. Retrieved 1 April 2015.
  2. ^ admin (2006-06-30). "Library Bill of Rights". Advocacy, Legislation & Issues. Retrieved 2021-10-09.