Library FAQ Topics

  

Catalog Update FAQs

Will my account change after the April update?

Your password will change to the last four digits of the phone number on your account. You can change your password at any time.

You may also need to change your notification preferences. You can change your preferences in your account if you wish.

Your linked accounts might change. If your account was linked to another adult’s account, please let us know so that we can make a note on your account.

Your reading lists may not update. If you have existing reading lists, we suggest downloading them as a backup.

Will the catalog update affect my holds? Will I get extra time to pick up my holds?

We don’t anticipate holds being affected, but if something doesn’t look right in your account, please let us know! We will extend holds shelf times through the end of the following week.

Will renewals be affected during the catalog closure?

We’ve fixed it so none of your items will be due during the closure and for a week after. And we don’t charge late fines, so you won’t be charged for anything returned late during or after the closure.

My question isn’t answered here.

Feel free to send us a message from our This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. page or contact staff at any branch of SLO County Public Libraries. We’re ready to help.

Why isn’t the Black Gold mobile app working?

The Black Gold app expires soon. County of SLO Public Libraries will have its own mobile app in May 2022. If you need access to your digital library card (barcode), you’ll find it in a few different places: 

In your online account when you sign into My Account from SLOLibrary.org 

In the cloudLibrary eBook app 

Why can't I see my SLO Libraries account and my holds in Libby?

You may still be signed into the Black Gold side. You'll need to add your SLO Libraries card to Libby. Here's how:

  • Tap the icon with the three lines at the bottom of Libby and select Add Library.
  • Enter your zip code
  • TapCounty of San Luis Obispo Public Libraries
  • Tap Sign In With My Card
  • Enter your library card number
  • TapSign In 
  • TapNext
  • Tap the Book iconto go to loans and holds

Download a visual guide

What happened to my reading lists?

Unfortunately, during the updates, some patron reading lists were lost. This was completely unexpected and we apologize. We are working with OverDrive to see if we can recover these lists. 

I'm signed into my SLO Libraries account on Libby/OverDrive, but I still don't see my holds.

Some patron holds were affected during our updates. This was unexpected. If you notice something’s not right, please let us know so we can help you manage your holds. If the title you want to place a hold on isn't available, please submit a suggestion for purchase online or recommend it in the OverDrive app. We’ll do our best to get you your eBook or audiobook!

Does Libby/OverDrive have fewer items now?

Because we’re no longer sharing materials with Black Gold libraries, the catalog is smaller. We are currently working on adding patron suggestions and new titles, and we'll be adding more titles in the coming months. Please let us know if there's something you'd like that we don't have, and we'll do our best to get it for you. We also suggest using our other download and streaming services, Hoopla and cloudLibrary, in addition Libby/OverDrive. The apps are available at your favorite app store.

How do I remove Black Gold from my Libby/OverDrive?

If you have anything borrowed from Black Gold on Libby, it will stay there until you've returned the book. It should automatically disappear when you've added your County of SLO Public Libraries card and viewed your account or checked something out. We don't recommend uninstalling/reinstalling the app—That might erase certain tags, lists, or histories.

You can also remove the Black Gold card. Click or tap on the 3 lines at the bottom of the app. Underneath YOUR LIBRARIES you'll see Add Library and 1 Card+, both in red. Click or tap on 1 Card+ to see all your library cards. Choose Black Gold. On the image of the Black Gold card, you’ll see ACTIONS. Click or tap ACTIONS for more options. 

I use Libby/OverDrive on my desktop. Which website should I use?

Your County of SLO Public Libraries card will not work in the Black Gold eBook websites. Use your County of SLO Public Libraries card here:

Libby
OverDrive

We suggest bookmarking these links. You can also access these websites from our Digital tab at SLOLibrary.org

Collection FAQs

Can I suggest a title for the Library to purchase?

Yes. If you didn’t find it in our catalog, feel free to make a suggestion through our online request form, or by contacting any County of SLO Public Libraries branch. Your suggestion might even be eligible for our free Zip Books service, where your book or audiobook is shipped directly to your door from Amazon

Where did the music CDs go?

We've moved them to storage to make room for more of our popular collections. But don't worry—you can still place holds on CDs from our catalog

Are you getting rid of music CDs

Because technology is changing and there are so many streaming and downloadable options, we won’t be adding any more music CDs to our collection. We recommend using our free online service Hoopla for access to thousands of titles you can listen to instantly.

What's Hoopla?

It's the Library's free online music service. Once you sign up with your library card, you can listen from your desktop or download to your device with the free Hoopla app. Everything in Hoopla is on-demand, so you can enjoy your music instantly—there's never a wait.

Account FAQs

How can I place holds on library books and materials?

1. Place items on hold using the online library catalog, www.slolibrary.org Click on the Search the Catalog button and place requests.
2. If you need assistance, please call the library to speak to a staff person. Have your library card number ready.
3. You may place up to 20 holds.
4. When you receive notification that your hold is ready for pickup, visit your selected library to pick up your requests.

I have items on hold, and I would like to pick them up at a different library. How do I change my holds pickup location?

You can change the pick-up location to any of our 14 branches in your account online. Go to your holds list and check the box by the items you wish to change the pickup location for, then click the Change Pickup Location button.

How do I know my hold items are ready for me to pick up?

You will receive an email, text or phone notification based on the preference selected in your account.

Can I check items out if I got my card online?

With an online card, you can check out digital materials, but not physical items. To update your online card, please bring identification and go to the information desk at one of the libraries listed above. Let us know you have a digital card and we’ll take it from there.

Can I pick up items on hold for another person ?

Yes. Please bring the library card of the person who requested the hold items and you can pick up their items.

How can I pay a fine on my library account?

We encourage you to contact library staff before paying fines on your account. If you need to make a payment, you can pay online by logging into your account and using a credit card, or you can visit a branch and pay by credit card or cash.

Why don’t you offer telephone notifications anymore?

According to our data, most of our patrons prefer email or text notifications, and they prefer to manage their accounts online. You can manage your account by logging in at SLOLibrary.org, by calling any branch of the County of SLO Public Libraries, or by visiting a branch in person. We understand this change may be inconvenient—Don’t hesitate to ask us for help with your account.

What happens if I accidentally return an item to SLO Libraries that belongs to another library?

We will always send an item back to its owning library, even after we leave the Black Gold Cooperative Library System in July. Please note that it will stay on your account until it’s checked in at the owning library.

Is there a digital library card for my phone?

Yes—You’ll find your digital card (barcode) in a few different places:
  

In your online account when you sign into My Account from SLOLibrary.org 

In the cloudLibrary eBook app 

In the Library’s app (coming soon!) 

Services FAQs

Are public computers available?

Some public computers are available at each library. Computers are spaced 6 feet apart, and computer sessions are limited to a one-hour session per day. Mobile printing is available. Chromebooks, Wi-Fi hotspots, and Launchpads are available for checkout.

What safety measures are you taking?

Library staff are following State and County guidelines to ensure safety by maintaining separate workspaces, sanitizing workstations, and wearing masks . The spaces inside the libraries have been adjusted to accommodate distancing; furniture will be arranged with safety in mind.

We are not able to guarantee the safety of shared library materials. During this time, it is recommended that you consult the CDC guidelines on how to protect yourself from exposure to COVID-19, and use our Digital Library if you have any concerns.

Can I donate materials to the Library at this time?

Please check with your local branch.

How was the decision made to leave Black Gold?

After many years of proposing to Black Gold various alternatives in sharing costs more equitably, our requests were always denied. We have the resources, staffing, and funding to better provide for our patrons without relying on Black Gold.

Being part of Black Gold meant I have access to so many titles. How will you make up for the loss to this access?

We hope you will find what you are looking for in our collections. If you do not, please let us know what you are looking for either via a purchase suggestion in your library account, through an email at Ask A Librarian, in person or via telephone. We want to hear what you’re looking for! We may also be able to direct your request to Zip Books or help you find existing items in our collection that meet your needs.

When you leave Black Gold, will I still be able to use Libby, CloudLibrary and other digital platforms?

Yes. You will still have access to all of our digital platforms. Since we will no longer share Libby with other patrons in Black Gold, for example, you may see that you will not need to wait as long for your item.

When you leave Black Gold, will I need to get a new library card?

If your library card number begins with the digits 2206300 you will not need a new card. If your library card begins with a set of numbers other than these, you will need a new library card. Please contact library staff for assistance.

I’m having trouble accessing the New York Times online.

Some patrons have reported difficulties logging in to the New York Times online. Submit your question to our Ask page or contact staff for assistance.