Even The Library Isn’t Free

Last week I went to my new local library to check out a couple books, yoga DVDs, and two books on CDs. The woman behind the desk said, “That’ll be $7.” Never before did I pay for anything at the library (except late fees). The library is the only free institution I have known since a child and even as an adult, it is one of my favorite places to be. All that learning going on and free resources at our fingertips. Yum. So what’s this all about, charging me to learn, when thousands of other resources offer FREE products and services? Free business cards at Vista print. Free websites at WordPress.com. Free news articles written by trained writers who are convinced to give their work away for free for “great exposure.” Especially in my field, people still ask me to do work for free. “It won’t take you long to crop four photos.” “Do my logo and I’ll market you.” “Let’s barter services.” What’s peculiar is many do graphic design themselves. It’s a DIY “Do It Yourself” society. Yet, when will we be making enough money to hire the experts? Expecting everything for free can’t continue. Sure you can give away a taste of what you do but you need to be paid. The pendulum is swinging backwards and my new library also expects to be paid. Not sure if I’ll be borrowing DVDs at $2 a piece. I sure hope to make enough to hire a copy editor someday.