Saturday, 5 March 2011

World Book Night and other Days

I wish I could celebrate World Book Night with a happy heart instead of this heavy feeling. A few years ago we were up in arms at the fact that in some countries in Europe 300,000 books were being pulped every week because of over-production. This year, for World Book Night an extra one million books have been printed in order to give them away free... to 'encourage reading'. Well hooray - why not stop a couple of truckloads of books on their way to the pulpers and give those books away free instead?

Borderline Books (dot org) was set up 10 years ago to do exactly that - to ask publishers and libraries not to throw books out but to donate them so they can be redistributed amongst people who have no money for books. Thousands of books have been given free in the Netherlands and the UK to organisations working with the homeless, with refugees, abused women and children, former prisoners, youth clubs, community centres, organisations for the elderly....
The idea of printing an extra million books specially to give them away just seems like some mad publicity campaign from someone who has no idea about the book trade - yet it was thought up by a publisher.

Well... I will probably go to the event so I can grumble and hand out leaflets about Borderline Books!

And there is so much going on this week for International Womens Day, it's very hard to choose. Interesting to see on the website for IWD that there seem to be more events in the UK than in any other country... or perhaps just more in the UK who reigstered their events. Who knows. Good that people are paying attention anyway.
- Let's remember garment workers all over the world, and those Tibetan nuns sitting in prison for their faith - and women in IT who earn 23% less than their mail counterparts.

Who said we won equality?

No comments:

Post a Comment