It’s been a crazy week in the news for libraries.
The weirdest story has to be this one from Florida. The headline claims that a male librarian at Florida Atlantic University was arrested for filming students masturbating and urinating in the library restrooms, although from the story it’s not clear if he was an actual librarian or just someone who worked in the library.
Either way, eww.
One student reported him after the library guy was paying too much attention to him in the restroom. Makes sense.
Then there’s the concerned student who “then discovered a 30-second clip of himself peeing had been posted to Pornhub.com.”
It wasn’t reported just how the student discovered the clip, but it couldn’t have been tastefully. Imagine the shock if you’re looking for some porn and discover something like that.
A sadder story is that the shooter in the school shooting in Colorado last week was supposedly targeting the school librarian. The librarian is also the debate coach and had “disciplined” the student somehow earlier in the school year. It’s too depressing to think about.
But the story that intrigued me the most came via Library Link of the Day about a father who “bought” a digital Christmas movie by Disney from Amazon, but was disappointed that when he and his children tried to watch it, the movie had disappeared from his Amazon account.
Disney apparently wanted to show the movie exclusively on their own TV channel, so they pulled it from Amazon, even for those who had “bought” it. A nice Merry Christmas from Disney.
After some hassle, the movie was refunded, then returned to his account, but the father seems to have learned a Christmas lesson.
“I don’t think you can buy digital content at this time,” he said. “I don’t think it’s possible. There may be a button that says buy now, but that does not exist. It’s a rental. Any promise that it’s going to be there forever, it’s only good as long as the company exists and decides it’s OK.”
What amazes me is how few people seem to realize that when they pay Amazon or some other company for digital content, they’re not buying it. They’re just licensing some software. In a sense, giving this stuff as gifts is giving the weirdest present ever.
The same is true for libraries, of course, and I still question the wisdom of a library paying considerably more for an ebook than a paper book and not actually owning anything. Does that really seem like a wise use of funds?
But what the heck. The/A holiday season is around the corner, so I’ll be too busy celebrating to worry about it, especially since I’m not planning to watch any Disney movies.