Tag Archives: Little Free Library

On the value of exploratory research

I don’t know whether neighborhood book exchanges live up to the claims of providing ‘icebreakers’ or ‘literary watercoolers’ for passersby. But I do know that inventorying a book exchange in the early morning rain tends to prompt conversation—at least the “what are you doing?” variety. After explaining that I was contributing to a study of […]
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TL;DR Neighborhood Book Exchanges: Localizing Information Practices

Here’s a Too Long; Didn’t Read account of our first research paper. If you are interested in our project but not interested enough to wade through 30 some pages, then check out this summary. There is something striking in stumbling upon a small hutch perched by the sidewalk and filled with books. It is unexpected, […]
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If you can’t steal a free book, then what do you call it? – Part II: A tragedy of the commons

With a perch on the soft-edges of public spaces, neighborhood book exchanges invite the public to participate in an open and free exchange of books. But that invitation positions the book exchange for all the highs and lows of public participation. In this post, we continue our discussion of book exchanges and book theft.   […]
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If you can’t steal a free book, then what do you call it? – Part I: The price of “free” things

Neighborhood book exchanges are celebrated for providing free access to books. But the open invitation to “take a book or leave a book” can result in more taking than leaving—even taking all the books to sell. Here, we discuss what it means to offer books for free, and whether you can steal a free book.  […]
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Book exchange miscellany: Discerning NooX from its kin

Neighborhood book exchanges are only one flavor of book exchange in what seems to be an ever more popular alternative book economy. As a follow-up to our post where we explain how we define a neighborhood book exchange, this post explores some other book exchange flavors, and considers how neighborhood book exchanges are different.   […]
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