SPRINGFIELD, Ill. (AP) — The Illinois State Library is launching “Text a Librarian,” a new service patrons can use to text message questions to and receive answers from the library.

The texting program is intended for simple, quick reference questions, up to 160 characters, that can be answered with a brief response.

Secretary of State and State Librarian Jesse White says the new texting service offers another way to meet patrons’ information needs. The state library already offers reference and information services in person, by e-mail, telephone or fax.

The State Library won’t charge for the service, but message and data rates from cellphone users’ service carriers still apply.

Texts can be sent to 217-953-0575, by starting the body of the text with the keyword ASKISL, followed by a space and the question.

(© Copyright 2011 The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.)


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