How many copies do you need?

20130530-102758.jpg That’s the question I asked myself when I saw four copies of Outliers and three copies of The Tipping Point at the downtown public library. Does the library need that much Malcolm Gladwell? Yet, I can hardly find seven books written by Vonnegut. I was able to locate at least seven books by Hemingway but not all that much on Steinbeck. The experience got me thinking.

Gladwell’s book The Tipping Point is an interesting book, but how will it stand up over the years? It’s a bestseller now, but in 50 years, or 100 years, will it still be impacting readers?

Along a parallel track, will your favorite blogs have the same readership in 50 years? Some of the blogs I used to enjoy reading eight years ago have disappeared from the webosphere a few short years ago and the writer’s voice I looked forward to hearing is no longer there.

But books remain. Whatever their legacy, they have a space, or more, on the bookshelves of a library. At least for now.

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