The Law and the Library

Gone by Christmas? Here’s the cunning plan, as outlined by National Librarian Rachel Esson in Point 10 of her Aide Memoire to the Minister of Internal Affairs on 26 July 2021: “It is expected that the key milestones under the control of the National Library (finalising what will be transferred, packing the collection and loading … Continue reading The Law and the Library

Misleading the Minister, misleading the public?

The National Library spin on sending its books to Manila, dissected: Part 1: poor process “Minister, have we got a deal for you!” is the general tone of the National Library’s (NL) Aide Memoire (AM) to the Minister of Internal Affairs, Jan Tinetti, on 26 July 2021. It is entitled ‘Internet Archive digitisation of the … Continue reading Misleading the Minister, misleading the public?

Briefing to the Minister on the Internet Archive digitisation: How many government spin doctors does it take to kill a national taonga?

We have received a copy of this briefing via an Official Information Act inquiry, and we are publishing it here for all to read. The briefing is from the National Library to the Minister of Internal Affairs, Jan Tinetti, on the library's plans to send all the overseas books to the Philippines for digitising. “Ahead … Continue reading Briefing to the Minister on the Internet Archive digitisation: How many government spin doctors does it take to kill a national taonga?

Should lunch be free on the Internet?

A ridiculous question, isn’t it? Digital lunches are not a thing, and never will be. Whatever farmers and growers and processors and cooks have created in the real world can only be eaten by consumers in the real world. Further, if you steal cherries from an orchard, or cans of beans from a supermarket, or … Continue reading Should lunch be free on the Internet?

NZ authors beware!

....the National Library is establishing a precedent for breaching your copyright. Book Guardians Executive Member and author Christine Dann is worried - very worried. On the back page of Scotty Morrison’s 2015 book Māori Made Easy (the nearest book to hand for checking purposes) it says “The right of Scotty Morrison to be identified as … Continue reading NZ authors beware!

Paper vs pixels. Why digitising the National Library’s books would be wrong in so many ways

“We are now in advanced discussions with an overseas digitisation partner” the National Librarian, Rachel Esson, told recipients of her June OPC [Overseas Published Collection] Update on 28 June 2021. She went on to say that it was her view that “...digitisation will safeguard New Zealanders’ access to the titles from the OPC now and … Continue reading Paper vs pixels. Why digitising the National Library’s books would be wrong in so many ways

Lies, damned lies and public relations….

Lies, damned lies and public relations – or – how to spin throwing out 600,000+ National Library books “All governments lie” was the motto of renowned journalist I.F.Stone, who devoted a good part of his long career to catching the American government at it. He did so without the aid of the US Freedom of … Continue reading Lies, damned lies and public relations….

Great libraries make great writers

Every great writer is a reader from an early age. In this article Christine Dann examines the vital importance of easy access to good libraries for New Zealand’s first two internationally acclaimed authors, and wonders if New Zealand will produce any more now that both easy access and good libraries are under threat. If you … Continue reading Great libraries make great writers

The truth about what is happening to our National Library

The National Library website currently displays a page about the Overseas Published Collection which purports to explain about the disposal "project". Unfortunately it contains factual errors and misleading statements. Here we set out to dispel the myths and explain what is really happening behind the glossy words. They state that they plan to "rehome" some … Continue reading The truth about what is happening to our National Library

Who takes care of the (book) caretakers?

Which statutory body advises the Minister about the National Library? Are they forthcoming about their meetings and their discussions? Or are they merely a committee that rubber stamps the requests of the management of the National Library, the institution they are meant to oversee? Publicly available documents suggest that governance of the National Library is … Continue reading Who takes care of the (book) caretakers?