So, I was on Facebook commenting on the issue regarding a regulated price on books in the province. The idea, purpose, hopes, expectations, wish is to slowly bring people —in a controlled effort, yes— to buy from local independent libraries instead of the multinational. There are only few of them left, even in Montreal, and they cannot afford to have sales up to 20% off on most of their books, while those multinational can. They are asking to limit the discounts to 10% off, for all independent and multinational libraries, and any company selling books, for the first 9 months when a book hits the shelves.
The debate, or more like opinion sharing, on Facebook started off with such statements that it will only decrease the sales in books. Which, in a sense, is expected. Then, it went on saying that their profits will be affected. Yet, multinational can afford those loss (to some extent, granted) considering they sell not only books but DVDs, stationary, kitchen stuff, etc. Independent, from what I have seen and experienced all my life, would like to keep it to the tradionnal term of what a library is and offer BOOKS, and ONLY books. Otherwise, Renaud-Bray and the likes becomes much more of a supermarket than a library, and it is worrying that the people working there, from top to bottom, barely knows anything about books but a lot more about selling, if not strictly selling.
The real question is what choice are we willing to make: pay less in the present to get a small variety of best-sellers VS pay a bit more but preserve an interesting diversity of books in the future.
Another point that needs to be taken in consideration, of course, is consumer habit. And we are going to buy things we can get out of our bucks. Logical. Common sense. Considering the alarming increasing poverty rate and homelessness in Quebec, I doubt we can discuss survival without solving how can people LIVE rather than SURVIVE, so they can AFFORD at a reasonable price a few leisure. I’ll be cynical and say : watch these douchebag bourgeois cunt make very poor decision. It was also suggested to keep the variety of books for online purchase. Excluding all people who do not own a computer or have access to computer with Internet, excluding all people who do not understand technology, excluding all people who do not trust online purchase. I really don’t see all the elders buying off the Internet.
PS. In the debate, I was told that buying books at second-hand library/store is not library, just book retailers. Blurred lines of definition and purpose… and yet I’d rather buy my books in those “book retailer” places instead of multinational that refuses to order books I will pay in my preferred language. Also, no book should be in the trash. A book is forever.