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Nearly All U.S. Public Libraries Now Offer Public Access to the Internet


According in the ALA Library Fact Sheet 26,  98% of U.S. Public Libraries now offer public access to the Internet.

  • "Virtually all libraries (98 percent) offer free public Wi-Fi access;

  • "95 percent of libraries offer summer reading programs to forestall the “summer slide” in reading achievement experienced when learning takes a holiday between school terms;

  • "Close to 90 percent of libraries offer basic digital literacy training, and a significant majority support training related to new technology devices (62 percent), safe online practices (57 percent) and social media use (56 percent);

  • "76 percent of libraries assist patrons in using online government programs and services;

  • "The vast majority of libraries provide programs that support people in applying for jobs (73 percent), access and using online job opportunity resources (68 percent) and using online business information resources (48 percent);

  • "A significant majority of libraries host social connection events for adults (61 percent) and teens (60 percent) such as book discussion groups or gaming programs;

  • "45 percent of libraries provide early-learning technologies for pre-K children; and

  • "More than one-third of all libraries provide literacy, GED prep, STEAM and afterschool programs.

"Digital content offerings also continue to climb, with more than 90 percent of public libraries offering e-books, online homework assistance (95 percent) and online language learning (56 percent), to name a few. A recent survey from library ebook supplier OverDrive finds that more than 120 million e-books and audiobooks were borrowed from libraries they supply in the first nine months of 2015, representing year-over-year growth of almost 20 percent" (, accessed 8-2019).

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