So what? Well… it’s a usability and experience thing. There will be MySpacers that want to peruse the page, see what programs the library has to offer, etc – and not want to sign up to be a friend of the library. By setting their profile to private, the library is basically blocking all their great MySpace content from ALL POTENTIAL CUSTOMERS. It’s sort of like saying “yes, you can enter our library building! Of course! But – do you have a library card? ‘Cause you can ONLY enter our fine library if you have a library card.”
The newspaper article about the page (aside – extremely cool they received press about their MySpace page!) quotes a librarian saying they’ve added more than 80 friends to the site since August. My guess? They’d get more friends if the profile WASN’T set to private.