Iconic books are texts revered as objects of power rather than just as words of instruction, information, or insight. In religious and secular rituals around the globe, people carry, show, wave, touch and kiss books and other texts, as well as read them. This blog chronicles such events and activities. (For more about iconic books, see the links to the Iconic Books Project at left.)

Wednesday, April 25, 2012

Off-site storage debate at NYPL

The Chronicle of Higher Education today reports on a debate at the New York Public Library over Off-site Storage. The Library is considering sending many more of its volumes to Recap, a storage facility run by Columbia, Princeton and the NYPL in New Jersey.
The library promises that materials sent to Recap will be safely stored and quickly accessible—usually within 24 hours—to patrons who request them. Critics say that remote storage doesn't work so well in practice, and that the wrong message is sent by taking books out of the heart of the librar.
This is a familiar debate which played out on my campus at Syracuse University two years ago. The rest of the Chronicle article, however, reads like an advertizement for off-site storage. It presents the objections and counters them, point by point, continuing a unfortunate trend at this newspaper to displace news with advocacy.

1 comment:

Matt said...

A similar thing happened with the San Francisco main library. I don't remember all the details, but there was a big to do about the card catalog being purged. Poepe who run libraries should be very careful about moving things around, and especially about purging them. Their patrons get used to things being in a certain place and grow annoyed by needless changes.