What Happened To Freedom of Speech?

This article makes me mad: 'A library employee in this Lake Michigan resort community has been fired for writing a book that describes a range of unpleasant patrons, from the merely unpleasant to online sex fiends, in a town she calls "Denialville." Using the pen name Ann Miketa, Sally Stern-Hamilton wrote "Library Diaries," which she describes as a fictional account based on her on-the-job experiences.' She was fired! For writing a fictional book! I can guarantee you those crazy library patrons are found in all libraries, all around the world (sometimes there is truth in stereotypes, no kidding, I've seen them). She brings up a good point: 'Stern-Hamilton said what happened to her goes against the spirit a library is supposed to represent. "The absolute irony is that the public library is a pillar of free speech, and leads me to wonder why the administration is so upset. It's fiction," she said.' Stupid.


  1. No, she was fired for exposing, perhaps defaming, identifiable library patrons, thereby breaching their right to privacy. Her 'fiction' was thinly veiled creative non-fiction, by where she referred to library patrons as perverts, stupid, and any number of other derogatory terms. Would you go to a library where you knew one of the assistants was watching your every move, possibly to make fun of you in her next book?

    Then she used an image of THE ACTUAL LIBRARY on the cover. They had every right to can her.

    I refer to one of many other blog posts about this issue: http://mittenlit.wordpress.com/2008/08/23/182/

  2. Maybe you put me in my place, but I still think her motives were pure.

  3. Could be, sure. But if she had used a real publisher instead of Publish Everybody (America), they would have made sure this wasn't an issue, either by making her further hide the identities of her subjects or heavily editing the book. A legal department would have looked it over before it ever saw the light of day, and she wouldn't have lost her job.


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