Google has become so prevalent today it is hard to imagine life without it. Be honest, how many times a day do you Google (please note, Google is now a verb in addition to a noun) an answer? And given that it is 17 years old, old enough to drive but not old enough to vote, none of my three nephews have ever experienced a world without the almighty Google. The oldest is in Grade 11 and Google is his go-to for all required research and homework help.
Back when I was attending classes for my MLIS, I would get asked (a lot), "Why do we need Librarians? We've got Google and the internet." To this I defer to the great author Neil Gaiman: "Google can bring you back 100,000 answers, a Librarian can bring you back the right one."
Google searches are easy and, with modern technology like smartphones, are literally at your fingertips. The problem? Information overload. Google brings back so many answers, the average user is not sure where to start. A simple search of Canada brought back 171 million results. Let us think about that for a moment. 171 million results in a google search on Canada. There are more search results than there are Canadian citizens. Even adding in extra search criteria like Nova Scotia only brought it down to 119 million. I had to add in my hometown, the impossibly pronounced Musquodoboit Harbour, to get less than a million results. This is where a Librarian comes in handy. Librarians have the background and skills to help with search terms and handling the 171 million results to find the relevant and quality sources. Otherwise, the average searcher will skim the first page of results and be done. Not a great idea. Google brings back 10 results (on average) on the first page, which if you are searching for the capital of Canada is likely to get you an accurate search result, but other topics may not be so lucky.