Free Democratic Public Space

At first glance it is difficult to reconcile the public library values of freedom of expression and providing safe spaces. But on closer examination both of these may be accommodated if we ask questions such as: what does safe space mean?; who decides what it means? and safe for who? There is no absolute guarantee... Continue Reading →

Free Speech and Hate Speech

The recent hate speech versus free speech debates (or screaming matches) at Vancouver (VPL) and Toronto Public Library (TPL) have demonstrated an irreconcilable contradiction between two values that are at the very heart of public libraries: freedom of expression and safe spaces. We cannot open our doors to all points of view and also guarantee... Continue Reading →

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