"We have a wide assortment of games available with some of the most popular being Super Smash Bros. Brawl, any Naruto title, Uncharted 2, Madden NFL, NBA 2K, Guitar Hero, Rock Band, Ghost Recon 2, Mortal Kombat vs. DC Universe, Little Big Planet, and Batman: Arkham Asylum."
With the possible exception of Uncharted 2 and Madden, I guarantee those are not games teen boys are actually talking about. It's all well and good to talk about building community and providing stories in all forms, but many of those teens are coming to the library to play PS3- exclusive games (like Uncharted) because they do not have the console at home. After gaming they go home, sign onto Xbox Live and play Halo or Call of Duty(which no one in the profession can talk about because they are rated M).
Houston has a great program and kudos to them, I'm not writing this to critique their idea. But is does the profession no good to keep publishing the same article about gaming over and over. This is not Gaming 2.0, it is not progress to reaching new populations or imparting new knowledge to the readership. The most successful part of this program is the purchase of the PS3, a console that has not yet saturated the gaming market. Providing teens what they want is essential. Providing what they already have is no way to convince new users to leave their rooms and play at the library. Of course that is not mentioned in the article.
"children today have entire conversations that take place using a cultural frame of reference that comes from video games."
That is a great defense for providing access to gaming, but it isn't backed up by the choice of games Houston is offering. Teens are not talking about the narrative of Little Big Planet or the sports titles because there IS no story. And they aren't talking about Ghost Recon or Mortal Kombat because they don't care. If Houston was concerned with being relevant to today's teens they would not have selected games teens are actively not playing by choice and not by limited access.
Listing unappealing titles like Mortal Kombat vs. DC Universe and Ghost Recon are just going to encourage librarians to buy those games for their own gaming programs. At some point libraries have to deal with the fact that Call of Duty and Halo are the most played, most demanded, most recognized titles. Teens ARE playing these games, teens are talking about them. Why aren't we?