There is something sacred to a free people about their books. Books are how we share and learn ideas. In a free society, both books and ideas need to flow unhampered. This is why we founded OwnShelf, to give a person control over how and where they can read their own books in the digital age. The American Library Association has been at the vanguard of championing the freedom of the press and the freedom to read since 1876. The ALA makes kick-ass declarations like “all individuals have the right to express their ideas without governmental interference, and to read and listen to the ideas of others.” That is some super hero stuff!
Check out the ALA Library Bill of Rights:
The American Library Association affirms that all libraries are forums for information and ideas, and that the following basic policies should guide their services.
I. Books and other library resources should be provided for the interest, information, and enlightenment of all people of the community the library serves. Materials should not be excluded because of the origin, background, or views of those contributing to their creation.
II. Libraries should provide materials and information presenting all points of view on current and historical issues. Materials should not be proscribed or removed because of partisan or doctrinal disapproval.
III. Libraries should challenge censorship in the fulfillment of their responsibility to provide information and enlightenment.
IV. Libraries should cooperate with all persons and groups concerned with resisting abridgment of free expression and free access to ideas.
V. A person’s right to use a library should not be denied or abridged because of origin, age, background, or views.
For years, the ALA has promoted freedom to read through their Banned Books Week awareness campaign. In the ebook age, Librarians are fighting against unreasonable copyright protection that restricts readers’ access to books. To wit, this awesome “Open letter to America’s publishers from ALA President Maureen Sullivan“.
Since you are at OwnShelf reading this, you obviously love books. Now imagine that librarians love books about a hundred times more! Their love of books, and championing of freedom to read, makes librarians super. Next time you meet one, thank a SuperLibrarian for protecting your right to read.