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January 11, 2016


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Trevor Craig

I understand the anger Phil, I really do. One other reason why people might not sign it is they feel powerless and don't think a petition, however large will make any difference. Government even in coalition or with a tiny majority really don't care what people think. Thanks to our stupid voting system both locally and nationally, they can do what they want and ignore us. :-(

Dilys Baker

I would have signed. But then I got to the vile language. Why?

Simon McLeish

Thank you Phil. You have encouraged me to sign it today. Libraries played a huge part in my childhood and I am very grateful for that - and it will be to the detriment of social mobility and education if public libraries become a thing of the past. 6,338 signatures now: I think you have made a difference.

Helen B

Thank you Phil. When those who don't normally swear do just that, it is an indication of how really angry they are. I do give a flying f* and I have been pushing it, but I will give it another go, and another, and yet another.

Leon Bolton

Dilys: you are signing a petition for libraries instigated by Cilip, not Phil. Object all you want to his language but that is absolutely no reason not to sign the petition. Please reconsider.

Phil: totally understand and share your frustration...and don't have a problem with the language!

Ann-marie Knox

Being a Librarian is like having a calling, and our conscientious hard work teaching the next generation is taken for granted, undervalued and degraded by our employers. They are so short sighted they should have gone to Specsavers.

I will be voting. Thank you Phil.

Ann-marie Knox MCLIP

Francesca Marcelline

Well said Phil! Share and sign with a passion!

Tracy Hager

Hi Phil, I for one appreciate your message and how you've expressed yourself. I'm fed up of with the apathy. Oddly, I shared the petition back in December, the first day I saw it. I'm sure I would have signed the petition then, although I was just able to sign it again. This makes me wonder if my first attempt was successful? Anyway, thank you for expressing what so many of us feel.

V Dewhurst

I signed it straight away - to be honest I think so many of us are so bogged down with work that it's probably been put aside in the 'to do' pile - which never gets done!

Chitra Soundar

I grew up in a country with almost zero public libraries and I was proud to be in Britain where libraries are vibrant and friendly and community hubs. It is shame we are closing libraries here. I have signed and shared and going to ask more people personally as well.

Christopher Pipe

And why aren't public library staff signing in droves, and beseeching, even pestering, all their users to sign? Why are they ignoring people who offer to help campaign for better library provision, in effect declining offers of support? If they don't believe in and care about their own libraries, is it time we users started campaigning for their dismissal and replacement by professionals who are committed?

Graham Shackson

It is vital that we keep our country libraries, It is the difference between people learning and enjoying literature and not being able to do either. Elderly people will just give up reading and that will be disastrous for country folk.

Steve Griffiths

I would have thought that someone with an obvious interest in libraries would have a sufficient vocabulary - even of expletives - such that the constant repetition of the boring old f*ck would not be necessary. It really devalues an otherwise excellent argument.

Sydney Harris

yep, well said, nothing more to add, sign up you`all

Liz Dexter

You have never seemed the type of person to swear unneccessarily - so when you swear, it means it's necessary. I think there are more words in the piece than swear words, so it's not exactly indicative of a limited vocabulary! I've signed and shared the petition, although I'm no longer a librarian or a CILIP member. Fair play to you for this post and I hope it does some good.

Colleen Fitzgerald

I signed the petition and asked that it be put on our library's social media page. I was told it was 'too political' for us to advertise. I was shocked. I manage the social media page for the CILIP East of England Network and have posted it several times.

Maria Giovanna De Simone

Well said. I signed and shared on my facebook, then I read your post, and I decided to share the petition on my employer's twitter and facebook page too. I work for a very privileged college library, far from all of this, but I think that when it comes to the right to information we should all stand up for each other and fight for our rights.

Tom Sykes

Signed this last week, but have to admit the low numbers of signatories initially did make me think twice about signing, I'm embarrased to admit that. I then signed up because, well it's a no-brainer.

I'm sure its Cilip's behaviour up till now that is causing doubt, but as you say, better late than never.

Stuck a poster in the library as well, why not!?

Tracey Pratchett

I'm usually pretty switched on, Twitter, Facebook etc but thus is the first time I've seen this. Maybe timing over holidays? Just saying. I've signed and shared. Also have encouraged friends and family to complete local surveys/ petitions as Lancs get ready to close libraries ...

Richard Veevers

Hi Phil
Thanks for this.
I've cursed, I cried, I've laughed and I've even politely debated, all to no avail.
I left CILIP last year primarily because, as a public librarian, I didn't feel that CILIP connected with the public. From the numbers of signees on the petition (and from some of the distasteful comments left on your blog) it would appear that I don't have to change my mind just yet.
I submitted a paper about public libraries for 2015's CILIP conference, I'll be doing the same again for 2016. Maybe the audience will be a little more receptive this time!?

Ian Anstice (Hon FCLIP!)

I've pushed the petition from the get go and been campaigning for years. It's not hurt me and, frankly, even got me a few awards in the process. What I see is a feeling of depression and futility amongst librarians. I've never understood that. Stand up, do the best you can or - one day - those campaigning for you may, just, give up. And those who hate libraries will be smirking.

By the way, I've publicised the petition but I've never put it on my personal Facebook account. I'll do that now. Thank you Phil for an excellent and timely post.

Anglea Betts

Very well said. Totally agree with everything you've said (and swearing is definitely needed at times). We are living up to our stereotype of being quite and meek, at a time when we should be outspoken and frankly angry at what the government is doing to library services across the country. I had already signed, but haven't really shared. So thanks for the reminder and I will be encouraging library and non-library folk to sign.

Jennie Hillyard

I think this was a very valid point - like many of us, I signed the petition, shared it on Facebook and then moved on to dealing with Christmas. I didn't think to look back and see how it was doing and whether it needed a helping hand.
So I reshared it on Facebook, both as myself and as our local CILIP regional members group and it's gained a few more signatures.
I'm pleased to see we're nearly at the 7,500 target (I wonder why they set it so low?) and I hope it can go on from strength to strength.


Perfect sentiments Phil. Your languange is beautifully passionate.

John Vincent

Phil, thanks for this. (I'm one of the 6132 others who signed!) I don't understand why people aren't signing - it may be a "it's all about public libraries, and I work in another sector" view, but ALL types of library are potentially under threat. Do sign now!!

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