Do You Have A Library Elf?

December 21, 2006

There is a great new service now available to our patrons. The “Elf” is a free private service not associated with the Library that will help you keep track of your borrowed library materials and send you an email, rss or text message when your holds arrive and alert you before your materials go overdue. If you have submitted your email address to us, our current Essex Library system will send you email notifications of holds that have arrived and materials that have become overdue but the Elf will notify you before your materials become overdue and they offer a variety of ways to contact you. And…you can add your family’s cards to your account and keep track of their due dates, etc., and add your other library cards–assuming those libraries are on the Elf list. Currently, all 23 LION libraries are now participating in the Elf service.

To sign up for the Elf, click on the link below and then click on the “sign up” button on their homepage. This will begin a quick 3-step process-you’ll need the bar code from your Essex Library card. Step 1 asks for your email address and name, then create a password to enable you to log in. Be sure to check the box that says you agree to the Terms of Use and the Privacy Policy. Click ‘Create Elf Account’. Step 2 has you submitting your Library information. In the drop-down window under US Libraries, scroll down to CT libraries and click on ‘LION Libraries Online (beta)’–we will be listed separately as Essex Library in the next few weeks. Next, fill in your library barcode number found on the back of your Library card. There is no pin number so you needn’t worry about filling that in. Click ‘Save’. At the next window click ‘Go To Step 3’. Step 3 allows you to select how, when and how often you’d like to receive your notices. Make your selections and click ‘Finish’.

If you’ve elected to receive email notices, they will come with monthly calendars marked with days when materials are due, are already overdue and when holds have arrived. They also provide you with lists broken down into 1.Holds Ready For Pickup; 2. Overdue; 3. Not Due Yet and 4. Summary. As a value added bonus, the Elf will also illustrate a suggested book with an annotation and links to allow you to find it in a nearby library–based on a zip code area.