Hi there! If you’ve clicked on this, you may be a supporter of Little Free Libraries® and you’ve read about how I hate them and want them stopped. Before you engage with me, please consider the following:
- Myself and my research partner have no interest in “stopping” neighbourhood book exchanges, nor do we HATE Little Free Libraries. Those words were written by a journalist who is paid for the amount of clicks he gets on articles he writes. While I don’t think it was fair of him to paint us with that brush, that’s the biz. The rest of his piece fairly represents our work.
- Please, please consider reading our entire article. You can find it free here. It’s long. It’s nuanced. But it’s representative of a significant amount of research conducted over a long period of time. I assure you, we’ve thought a LOT about this subject.
- Please also note – though it should be obvious from the title of the article – our critique is focused on the non-profit organization LFL®, and not grassroots book exchanges. Share books with your neighbours – please, by all means, share away – but don’t call it a library.
- Finally, we sought to provide an alternative point of view on a subject that has undergone almost zero critique. We are researchers exploring a phenomenon in our field. You can disagree with us. That’s okay. But similarly, we can disagree with you too. That’s also okay.
On a final note, we implore you to inquire about the state of funding for your local public library. How are they doing? Is there something you could do to help give them a boost? Maybe you already do – and we applaud you for that – but if you haven’t checked in with the state of their funding or been to visit a branch in a while, please do that. They are so vital to the community and at risk in many corners of the world. They need your voice.
Thanks for reading our research, and we hope that it’s given you a bit of food for thought.
Jane & Jordan