As some of you may know, Saturday marked 10 years since Keeping Up With the Kardashians premiered on E! Entertainment Television. Known and vilified as the show that introduced most of the world to the inner lives of Kris Jenner and her daughters — Kourtney, Kim, Khloé, Kendall, and Kylie — Keeping Up With the Kardashians has, like it or not, become a television staple. Whether you are a huge fan or loathe the Kardashian-Jenner family in its entirety, "Keeping Up With the Librarians" is the spoof you did not know you needed.
The social-media team at New Zealand's Invercargill City Libraries and Archives held a "totally impromptu, definitely not planned, photo-shoot" on Friday, in which they spoofed The Hollywood Reporter's "Kardashian Decade" cover. The six librarians took their roles as Kris, Kourtney, Kim, Khloé, Kendall, and Kylie seriously, mirroring their clothing and poses to the extent that professionalism would allow. To give their shoot a literary look, the group perched themselves on a large stack of books, which turned out to be "old dictionaries from the library's archive," according to BuzzFeed, although they're so huge that they totally look fake at first glance. Since Friday, the Invercargill team's Facebook post has gone viral, with more than 3,500 shares and 5,000 likes.
Not everyone is as happy about this as you might imagine. Although most of the social-media attention that "Keeping Up With the Librarians" has received has been positive, a few commenters popped up to question why a library's staff would waste their time mimicking the Kardashian-Jenner clan. "We don't think there is much better we can do," the librarians responded to one negative comment, after noting that the photograph was a way of "[p]romoting [the] library to a new generation."
In all fairness, libraries are doing quite well with the younger crowd. Although college students' utilization of libraries went down in 2016, a Pew Research Center report found that Millennials are more likely than people over the age of 30 to have read a book in the last 12 months. Pull out that little fact the next time someone laments that Millennials just aren't as analog as their forebears.
The Invercargill City Libraries and Archives staff say they intend to look into making a librarians-only calendar to raise money for the institution. One can only guess which iconic photos the social-media team will pick to have fun with next.