Guess who uses public libraries the most? Millennials

How millennials are changing cities
How millennials are changing cities


    How millennials are changing cities


How millennials are changing cities 01:41

(CNN)A public library may conjure up an image of a place where a septuagenarian is scouring for books on tape or a harried mom is trying to calm her kids by reading "Where The Wild Things Are."

But the biggest users of public libraries today are millennials.
Yes, those selfie-snapping, blog-posting millennials are the generation most likely to visit a public library, according to a report out this week.
The Pew Research Center report found that 53% of millennials ages 18 to 35 last fall said they have used a public library or bookmobile within the last year. The data doesn't include on-campus libraries.
    Only 45% of Generation Xers (ages 36-51), 43% of baby boomers (52-70) and 36% of the silent generation (71-88) said they visited a library during the same time period.
    Public libraries: By the numbers


    Number of public libraries in the US

    1.5 billion

    In-person visits to public libraries across US in 2013


    Average number of books each person checks out annually

    6.6 million

    Questions answered by librarians each week

    96.5 million

    Attendees at public library programs in 2013

    87.2 million

    Number of e-books public libraries held in 2012

    Source: American Library Association, 2012-2017

    Here's why

    Technology may explain the survey's findings.
    Many libraries have modernized facilities with high-speed Internet and 3D printers.
    That's made them a draw for millennials.
    "These kids are familiar with the fact that the library offers them the bandwidth and wireless access they might not get anywhere else," Julie Todaro, president of the American Library Association, told CNN.
    Libraries also allow users to check out digital devices such as iPads.
    "Teens see libraries different than their parents or caregivers used to see them," she said.

    Other findings

    Women are more likely to visit a library and use a library website, the survey found.
    Fifty-four percent of women say they visited in the last year, compared to just 39% of men.
    A person's schooling can affect how often someone finds themselves in a library.
    College graduates are more likely than high school graduates to use libraries in the past year -- 56% to 40%.