A coffee-break quickie that probably should be three separate posts, but…
1. Libraries as information places: For someone who grumps about “the library” being an artificial construct that sweeps too much into one pile, I fell right into it in the Library 2.0 and “Library 2.0″ essay. I should have been much clearer about two things:
One, that I was primarily talking about public libraries (and secondarily academic libraries)–and that school and special libraries are very different creatures (lots of kinds of very different creatures);
Two, that I wasn’t at all saying that libraries shouldn’t be information resources, just that public libraries aren’t primary everyday information resources for most people and that “information” seriously understates what public libraries do well.
Three, that narrative can be in almost any medium and delivery system (I heartily approve of DVD and CD collections in libraries, and of audio ebooks and…, not that it’s my role to approve or disapprove)–although print books have real and sustaining virtues for certain forms of long linear narrative. Which is only one kind of narrative.
[No one expects the Spanish Inquisition. If that reference makes no sense, ask.]
2. Banning and civility: I just love the conversations that take place on this blog, even if they are sometimes “dangling” and certainly one-sided to some extent. I do not believe that yelling at people constitutes conversation. But I may have overreacted to what I believe to be a deliberate, escalating form of inflammatory and defamatory comment. So: Nobody’s entirely banned from commenting–but I do reserve the right to put certain email addresses into “always moderate” status, and to delete without comment any comment that I regard as offtopic, hateful, or deliberately inflammatory.
Disagree with me all you like. I’m frequently wrong (there’s no halo above this head, and continued learning means changing one’s mind and becoming better informed) and expect to continue to be frequently wrong. I have never, ever deleted a comment because the person disagreed with what I said.
But I will delete, or fail to approve, comments that constitute yelling rather than conversation. And comments that are personal attacks (on me, or anyone else) rather than disagreements with what’s been said. And comments that slander entire groups of people.
And if other blogs choose to interpret that insistence on civility as suppression of dissent…well, you know, it’s still a free country, and intellectual dishonesty is part of that freedom.
3. If you’re attending Midwinter and knew Ilene Rockman: see this comment about a Sunday 5-6:30 gathering. I won’t be able to make the gathering (prior commitments, oddly in a very light Midwinter schedule), but will be there in spirit.