Friday, August 10, 2007

"You may be commiting a crime ..."

I was in a library a few days ago and ran across something I hadn't before ... and it scared me ...

In the front of each book was a small piece of paper ... neatly cut, perfectly centered on the flyleaf, and no more than two inches by two inches, the note addressed all potential readers with a stern and ominous message ... You may be committing a crime if you choose to write in this book ...

Back in November of '05, I wrote a post that dealt with writing in books and associated things ... here's a section of that :
How cool would it be to have access to a book with dog-eared pages and the
scribbles of 10, 50, or 100 years of readers/thinkers in the margins ...
ideas that move beyond those of Charles Darwin in his Origin of Species
and adding to them the opinions, questions, and feelings of a 17-year
old high school senior, a single mother of three who’s going back to
school, or a 72-year old Jesuit priest ... you ... me ...

... I want libraries to be the publishers and archivists and commentarians of content for, about, and by local folks ... I want not just to read the books, but all of the
ideas that my community-mates have left within the margins ...
Anyhow, while I did laugh a the note (how much time/money did the library spend putting them in?), at the same time it betells the issue facing us as a profession ... the fact that we want to protect the books and the ideas they embody instead of ensuring that the ideas live on and grow ...

I know, an over simplification, but what would a blog be without an oversimplified argument ... that's the best way to invite discussion, isn't it? ... Feel free to write in the margins ...

2 Comments:

Blogger scott said...

so those books with crayon scribbles in them, those scribbles are annotations?

3:51 PM  
Blogger ic-tim said...

Just because we've forgotten how to read the characters, doesn't there isn't language and meaning and art in there someplace ...

1:44 PM  

Post a Comment

Links to this post:

Create a Link

<< Home