SOME years ago a saying was current that when two English librarians met they talked classification, but when two American librarians met they talked publicity. Perhaps the long‐held opinion that Americans are necessarily good business men has been somewhat discounted by the state of their country financially at the present moment. But on the whole they are probably the best business people still inhabiting this planet. It was natural, therefore, that what was apparently the main interest of the American librarian should in time become a very substantial interest of his English brother. It is a good thing at intervals to review the manner and methods of our publicity, to see if they are in keeping with the needs and with the spirit of the time. There is the publicity which is good, which is necessary; there is also the publicity which is ostentatious, vulgar and in the end misses its aim. There is also a very definite danger of overdoing publicity. Those libraries which are one mass of posters, advertisements, admonitions, and other notices, suffer from the public neglect of them all. What the librarian who uses publicity methods has to do is to study the current psychology of his readers, and to adapt his posters and publications—indeed all his methods—to harmonise with that psychology.
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