Friday, 25 September 2009

New Zealand librarians respond to Dr Brian Edwards allegation that libraries are thieves

context - see here

Postscript -  6th October 2009
I've had a few notes asking me to explain this one. It's my tongue and cheek response to New Zealand broadcaster Brian Edwards who managed to get totally offside with the local library community by suggesting that public libraries, and by default librarians, are thieves.

Brian Edwards and Libraries 
He believes this because they lend his books which people might otherwise buy, and so deprive him of a royalty. His solution is to ask for libraries, or their customers to pay for a percentage of his royalty every time they take out one of his books. The latter, almost sensible idea  - until you try and figure out the logistics, was totally drowned out by the intemperance of his original remarks.

Curiously, in the week prior to the LIANZA annual conference of NZ librarians, BE has deleted the original post. And so the link above no longer works. This didn't go unnoticed as the comment on this blog shows.  

The Google Archive
The original post and the comments are in this Google archive link -  here - and thanks to the person who posted it to me. I suspect s/he is a librarian who knows how to keep track of thngs that have been published. Funny that.

The moral
Not a great idea to get offside with libraries, and their supporters. 

Interest Declaration
For the record, my company mcgovern online did the design and adaptation for the Brian Edwards, blog. Also, I have known and respected Brian Edwards for upwards of 15 years. He is an interesting, intelligent man, with a long track record of excellence in New Zealand broadcasting.  I think he is wrong about libraries - but that's the nature of open debate.

Also, as others have pointed out, it would be a pity if the deeper issues of how little authors get from a publishing deal is ignored. Also, as Edwards himself has asked, perhaps it is time to revist the terms and depth of the Public Lending Right for New Zealand Authors. Dertails on that here.


Hugh said...

That "context -- see here" link is messed up.

Anonymous said...


Anonymous said...

Wow! Won't link cos' he deleted it (don't pi55 off Librarians eh?)

Post Cached here -

Context - See Here

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