Hey! Public Libraries: I don’t know if you’ve realised this, but books are now worthless.
Yeah, sorry to break this to you, I feel that somebody should tell you the truth. Because like the smart-ass know-it-all with the cheating partner, you appear to be the last to know. You’re still stuck in denial, everyone else has been angry, accepted it and moved on. I know there was a time when you were the shit,
See, I remember you when you were
The young new face but you do like to slumber don’t you hon.
Azealia Banks – 212
back when books were worth something and you were exclusive.
In 1964 a hardback novel cost approximately 0.05% of the average weekly wage. Today? 0.0005% that’s a 100 fold decrease. Today I can walk into anyone of a dozen shops in my town and walk out with armfulls of books for free. I can find a shop on my high street who’ll happily give me a box of books without charging me. Imagine what they’d do to you if you were to walk out of a shop with an armfull of books you’d not paid for back in 1964. A few hundreds of years ago, only god knew/knows who could read. At that time, you could be tortured and executed for knowing how to read, for having a book. Imagine trying to walk out of a library then, piled up with books you’d not paid for, assuming you had the keys to the locks and chains.
Yes these illustrations are exaggerations, exaggerated not to prove a point, to orient a general direction. Towards ubiquitousness of information, from scarcity. Information accretes increasingly, like a black hole with unlimited fuel within its’ event horizon. That’s why my illustrations are exaggerated. Like the fabled King Canute, except instead of standing in front of the incoming tide you are trying to stop the only force in the universe defying the second law of thermodynamics. I’m sure you have some romantic notion of history and heritage when you’re say you’re saving books, stop it, shit’s embarrassing. You’re so far behind the curve you actually think you’re ahead of it.
Look at yourself, what does a public library look like? The same as it did in ’64, you doubt me? In 1964 fully two-thirds of the UK’s population used the library on a regular, monthly basis. The most recent studies suggest barely a third of population uses the library annually. Tempus-fucking-fugit folks. Tempus-fucking-fugit, library non.