NLB saga: The library to finetune review process
Published on Jul 18, 2014 3:56 PM
The National Library Board will finetune its review process and may set up an external panel to help review potentially controversial titles, its chief executive Elaine Ng said on Friday.
But the library board has not decided which libraries the two children's titles, previously removed as it contained homosexual references, will now go, or when they will be reinstated.
Ms Ng said it will take about a week for the NLB to decide.
Minister of Communications and Information Yaacob Ibrahim had said on Friday morning that And Tango Makes Three and The White Swan Express will be put back in the library's adult collection.
Acknowledging that the current review process has room for improvements, Ms Ng said the library board will take a leaf from external organisations and "study what works best for us".
She reiterated the decision to remove the children's titles has always been about making sure that content in the children's section of the libraries remains "age-appropriate".
Young children are also the most frequent visitors at NLB's 25 public libraries, and many browse unsupervised, said Ms Ng.
Hence, the library board "takes special care with the books in our children's section", she said.
Ms Ng explained that "pulping" is a "technical term used in the book industry to describe the recycling of printed materials".
"We had used the term without any intention at all of denigrating books. As book lovers ourselves, we understand the reactions," said Ms Ng, referring to strong reactions from the public when the NLB first said the books would be pulped.