So while on one level the battles we are seeing fought do resemble the old Robber Baron wars of the past, the stakes are much higher because we cannot back out as easily as we could have in the past. This is why the short term thinking that plagues libraries is such a serious problem. Not developing real answers to econtent like the one we have done out here in Colorado will end up pushing us further out on the margin of society.
The best and most immediate example I can think of comes right out of the article:
"Both companies are in a position to use the information smartphones gather about their owners to target ads, offer coupons and promotions, and to develop seamless ways of paying with a phone at the cash register."
This is data mining. Gathering information about your patrons to find ways to connect with them better. Libraries have access to some of the richest and deepest data out there- but we throw it out every night and start over again each day. We are playing from behind. We do not offer seamless anything. Instead everything is behind wall after wall after wall