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It may not be happening in your neighbourhood yet, but if the UK manage to close down all of it's branch libraries because of so-called cost cutting, it could happen anywhere. Please support this by sharing with others.



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Comment by James N. Dawson on February 18, 2011 at 1:19pm


Apparently there's a word-limit for the comment field and my long response was cut off.  I replied on my own blog, which has the full reply.

No, I don't see profit or non-profit as an issue.  I'm a libertarian and neither for nor against either.

I see the issue more in existential and cultural terms.

You may want to read my full reply.






Comment by Mike O'Hare on February 18, 2011 at 8:50am
Thanks for the response, James. I reckon your sentiments represent a lot of folk who do not wish to enter the electronic/cyber era and remain in the real world. All of the changes that are being forced upon us are profit based and motivated. This is the price we pay to live in a capitalist world. Let's try and change it, huh?
Comment by James N. Dawson on February 18, 2011 at 8:40am

I e-mailed Joe Smith, publisher of the Aardvark and owner of Manual Publishing blog, November, 2009:

Joe: I wrote the following comment on your blog entry, November, about library closings. I tried to enter it in the comments text box, but there was this scroll down menu I was supposed select something from that I didn't understand. I tried various choices, but it kept saying I got it wrong in red. Not complaining, just explaining. My usual incompetence. Hope this is the right e-mail address. It's the only one I could find. Anyway, here's the comment. You're welcome to post it yourself if you want, but I won't hold it against you if you don't want to. I'm just trying to "support the scene".

I saw a segment on ABC News about how public libraries were going to start de-emphasizing paperbooks and offering free e-books. Like many an old-school bibliophile, this saddened me (and irked me, hearing Charlie Gibson's smug, mock sympathetic, final words on it). But then my "fair-minded" side thought, "Maybe I ought to try an e-book before I knock them."

I've never seen an e-book or an e-book reader. I guess they run on batteries, but given the slow, desultory way I read a book, would they run out and need recharging inconveniently often before I finished one? Would it be a frustrating and often confusing experience to try to read one, like the Internet often is for me? Like so many questions of paper vs. screen, it's hard to put my finger on my doubts about the latter. It seems like electronic/screen advocates always have a quick, easy and glib answer to any problem or concern I have about them.

I used to have a great fondness for libraries, but especially from browsing the ones I've visited recently, that fondness has all but died. For years most public libraries have been having a tendency to "cull" their old books for newer, trendier ones. It seems to me that the content has gotte


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