ARL Policy Notes

If you own books, they are yours. Or so you think! But, and this is sad, police don’t know what “owning” means. It might mean books not from the US can’t really be owned. Maybe you can’t give books to friends, or give books to a store for money, if the books are not from the US. Instead, you would have to ask the people who make the books, and they could ask for money, or say “no.” You would be stuck.

This is very sad. Places where you can get books without money (as long as you bring the books back to them later), might not be able to stay open. These places need to own books. Please help!

That’s my attempt to explain the first sale doctrine and the stakes for libraries using only the “ten hundred most used words” (a la xkcd) via the #upgoer5 tool. The Library Journal is giving it a shot, too. Can you do better?

For a simple, but not THAT simple, summary of this issue, see the Library Copyright Alliance one-pager here.

UPDATE: Nancy Sims at U. Minnesota weighs in with her attempt:

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