You can just imagine that the British Library was feelin' all good 'n service-y when it decided to include Amazon hyperlinks to its list of 13 million books and texts on its website -- but instead, they're under fire for supporting online shopping instead of small indies and local libraries.
Waterstones seems to be leading the picket-fence, with its MD James Daunt telling The Bookseller that the British library is "driving readers away from local libraries and high street bookshops," adding that "it is a shame that the British Library choose to give their endorsement to one aggressively commercial organisation."
While borrowing from libraries or hunting down a book from an indie store is infinitely more palatable than lining Amazon's pockets some more, in some cases it's just not possible -- either you can't locate a rare title, or perhaps because you're constrained by time. I think anyone who's intelligent enough to be looking at the British Library's website is probably in the right frame of mind to be supporting local businesses, but might appreciate clicking over and viewing more details about the book on Amazon's site if need be. [BBC]
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