Sunday, March 11, 2007

Sports Illustrated Halts Swimsuit Issue in Libraries

I am a librarian. I select books and magazines to put into a school library. Selection is a lot different than censorship. Selection denotes knowledge of one’s audience, what they like, what they want to read. Selection is not censorship. I am against censorship. In fact, it is the librarian’s code of ethics to hate censorship of any kind. Is it any wonder that librarians are upset with the publishers of Sports Illustrated? What made The Time Inc. Magazine Company think librarians would not be upset when they took the liberty to censor what librarians put on the shelf? Sports Illustrated magazine’s swimsuit issue was not sent to any library in the country: I have to admit that my K-5 library no longer subscribes to Sports Illustrated and it has nothing to do with the swimsuit issue. It has to do with the 5 to 10 year old audience the library serves. We now subscribe to Sports Illustrated for Kids, which caters to this age group. Censorship is wrong, in a school library it is all about audience appropriate selection.