Wednesday Fun: Librarians Abandon Dewey Decimal System in Favor of Netflix Categories

Consider this a bonus Friday Fun entry for the summer silly season...

Anyways, the Cronk of Higher Ed finally sees fit to subject librarians to the mockery we deserve: Librarians Abandon Dewey Decimal System in Favor of Netflix Categories!

"We found that we were spending an extraordinary amount of time explaining the Dewey Decimal classification system to our students, and they simply weren't retaining the information," explained Janet Poleman, director of the college's library. "Our students will return this fall to find an exciting new system categorizing our literature."

All books in the college's library will now be categorized using familiar Netflix categories.

"There has definitely been some healthy debate as to where some of our books will now live," said Poleman, recounting a particularly heated debate about whether Emily Bronte's Wuthering Heights belonged in the "Romantic Comedy" or "Cerebral Drama" section.

There's a hilarious conversion sheet in the Cronk article that you really have to read!

And yes, most academic libraries use the Library of Congress Classification system rather than the Dewey Decimal Classification system but I think enough smaller college libraries do use DDC to make the article "realistic."

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In my college days, I worked shelving books in the university library. There was a section of old books filed, for some reason, under the Dewey Decimal system. We called it "Screwy Dewey," and no one wanted to work in that area. Ugh.

I think I may still be able to remember some of the Dewey codes for specific undergrad interests of mine. It's arbitrary, but no more than any other system, and at least sequential numbers are easy to remember.

By stripey_cat (not verified) on 11 Aug 2010 #permalink