Minors may face limits at San Diego libraries

San Diego County libraries might soon allow parents to answer that question as officials look at changing the library card application for patrons under age 18.
A new proposal pushed by county Supervisor Bill Horn would require parents to mark a box indicating whether their child could check out R-rated DVDs and videos from the county's 33 libraries. The policy now allows patrons of all ages access to all library materials.

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This will work well.

Two possible ways to keep children from seeing R rated movies:
1) Have the parents enforce a no R rated movies in the house rule.

2) Have the library add code, tag MARC records with the rating, and set up a system to verify that the cardholder is > 18 or if <18 is allowed to view R rated movies, or if <18 should be prevented from viewing movie.

From a cost standpoint, notwithstanding staff training, and distribution of materials about the program, and implementing the 'don't let my kid check those dirty films out' requests- the cost of just coding this change which includes the creation of a field in the library card record for the flag, the logic behind the use of this flag and its interaction with the patron DOB field, the UI for the application of the restriction, the UI and logic for the popup message to the circ clerk, the UI and logic for an override, the system, regression and UAT for this I estimate at 280 hours of coding.

Even at the $95 I am paying for an offshore project (includes local project manager and business analyst, and offshore coding and testing and onshore QA in that average of $95/hr)

Using common costing methods this is 280 code, 1/10 PM, 1/5 BA, 1/10QA so 280+28+56+28 ... that is over $37K for this idea just for the software changes required. It does not include the staff time checking and updating MARC or training at all the 33 libraries. If you want to factor that in, even at ten bucks an hour we are well over $100K for this change.

I'd vote for the make parents be parents option from a purely financial standpoint.

100,000?

100,000?

Whatever. If you can't make this change to your circulation system for less than $100,000 here is a fix. Staff member at desk looks at movie notices that it is R and does not check out to people under 18.

$100,000 saved.

Why shift the responsibility?

Why shift the responsibility from parents to the staff at the library.

What about kids with no restriction, how do you denote the restriction on some children's records and not others.

What if the rating is not displated on the item, or covered with a barcode or tattletape.

Thanks for thinking this one through. Make it the library's problem, yes that will motivate the staff give them more of the burden of babysitting and parenting than they already have.

Won't work if you use some

Won't work if you use some kind of self-checkout machine.

you said - "Whatever. If you

you said - "Whatever. If you can't make this change to your circulation system for less than $100,000 here is a fix. Staff member at desk looks at movie notices that it is R and does not check out to people under 18."

Sigh. this old argument never stops. The MPAA rating system is a guideline - not law. Why should we, as librarians, be required to deciding what would be good for someone else's children? If it's not an actual law, then the only real reason I see why a librarian would feel prompted to do such a thing would be to impose a restriction based upon some odd sense of morality. And morality, of course, is subjective.

Read the story

>>Why should we, as librarians, be required to deciding what would be good for someone else's children?

You shouldn't. The parents are requesting that the children cannot check out R rated items. The librarians are not having to decide anything.

From the article: A new proposal pushed by county Supervisor Bill Horn would require parents to mark a box indicating whether their child could check out R-rated DVDs and videos from the county's 33 libraries.

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