Fantastic article in The Guardian. Matthew Zadrozny is back, standing tall for library nerds the world over!
The virtual destruction of the New York Public Library rests on faulty premises. In a world of cheap personal computers, ubiquitous internet access and vanished book stores, libraries will always be special. For in addition to preserving manuscripts that may never be digitized, providing services to communities, and lending e-books to remote users, library collections entice citizens to meet in public spaces – and not just for the experience of reading on paper. Readers come for the ageless experience of browsing the shelves and commenting on one another’s dust jackets. Should the plan here in New York go through, the 42nd Street Library may soon find that its terminals are as empty as the ethernet ports carved into the tables of the Main Reading Room…
And so one wonders where we might be had the library’s president, Anthony Marx, focused his famous salesmanship on getting a “baseline” library budget from the City and persuading the magnates on the board to multiply the endowment. Instead, the library quietly spent over $10 million on consultants, PR, and a celebrity architect, while making a mockery of public input.
Read the full article here.