Information is Powerful

In libraries, we care about information. We oppose efforts to limit, or censor access, to information. But sometimes we struggle with what to do about bad information, or misinformation. You might even think of this kind of thing as “fake news” or “alternative facts.” What I think we need to learn and remember is that it’s not our jobs to decide what certain people can and cannot “handle” when it comes to information and reading. It is our jobs to help people find information, and to help them evaluate information.  In an interview  with Professor Emily J.M. Knox (University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign), blogger Jessica Colbert helps us understand this issue.

It’s a long post, but one well worth reading.  Some highlights:

  • The actual reasons why people challenge books are issues of control.
  • We have to trust our fellow human beings to make decisions about what does and what does not harm them.
  • We should allow people in our community the freedom to essentially make up their own minds. And you might not like where they come out in the end, but that’s not going to change if you don’t allow them to read.
  • If you don’t have a policy, it can all fall apart.
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2 Responses to Information is Powerful

  1. Autumn Cote says:

    Would you be OK if I cross-posted this article to I’ll be sure to give you complete credit as the8 author. There is no fee; I’m simply trying to add more content diversity for our community and I liked what you wrote. If “OK” please let me know via email.



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