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Controversial Weeding

Megan Hartline —  June 19, 2013 — 5 Comments
Gloved hand spraying a dandelion weed

Gentle Weeding

What would you do if you came back from vacation and found your library shelves half empty?

Tracy Nectoux wrote a thoughtful report on drastic weeding at the Urbana Free Library. The weeding, which affected about half the collection and used publication date as the only criterion, was initiated by the library director while the librarian responsible for the collection was out of town.

Noted curmudgeon-at-large and academic library blogger Barbara Fister has another take on this at Inside Higher Ed.

Nectoux reports that the good folks at Better World Books, who received the weeded books, are working with the Urbana Free Library to resolve the situation.

We could talk about weeding criteria all day, but I’d rather discuss the obligation we have as library leaders to consult with colleagues and staff when making decisions. What circumstances affect that obligation?