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We won.

It turns out the victory is incomplete. The NYPL is still planning to harm the central library although not quite as much.

Don't switch the NYPL to e-books!

Typical commercial e-books don't give people or libraries the same freedoms as a printed book. In ethical terms, they are a big change for the worse. See ebooks for the specifics.

Most commercial e-books are so restrictive that libraries are not even allowed to buy one and then lend it. A self-respecting library should stand firm for its own rights, and readers' rights. Since e-books trample readers' freedom, libraries shouldn't encourage people to read that way.

The NYPL's proposed Central Library Plan stores millions of books far away, so that there's a long wait before you can see them. It means chilling surveillance, requiring patrons to identify themselves even to _look at a book in the library_.

The plan would also eliminate two major branch libraries, the Mid-Manhattan and the Science, Industry, and Business Library, to get the money to ruin the 42nd St Library -- like ripping your feet off to make cudgels to bash yourself on the head. The Donnell branch, where I borrowed many books when I was in high school, was foolishly destroyed; let's learn the lesson and do no more such harm.

Copyright (c) 2014 Richard Stallman Verbatim copying and redistribution of this entire page are permitted provided this notice is preserved.