San Francisco Public Library Responds After Forbes Op-Ed Suggests Amazon Should Replace Public Libraries

"Maybe Forbes doesn’t like that you can download their magazine free with your #SF library card," the SF Public Library tweeted

A Forbes article titled "Amazon Should Replace Local Libraries to Save Taxpayers Money" hit the web Saturday morning, and quickly received backlash from many Twitter users including the San Francisco Public Library.

LIU Post economist Panos Mourdoukoutas argued that if libraries closed, taxpayers would save money and Amazon could open bookstores for those who’d want physical books.

"[Libraries] don’t have the same value they used to," Mourdoukoutas wrote in the article. Arguing many things have been replaced like video rentals with Netflix, and books by Amazon. Adding that people use their Starbucks loyalty cards more than their library card.

This prompted many comments including a tweet from the San Francisco Public Library.

"Maybe Forbes doesn’t like that you can download their magazine free with your #SF library card," Tweeted the San Francisco Public Library Sunday.

Since then, the tweet has received over 2,000 likes and was retweeted nearly 700 times. 

Forbes deleted the article two days after publishing it.

"Forbes advocates spirited dialogue on a range of topics, including those that often take a contrarian view," a spokesman said in a statement. "Libraries play an important role in our society. This article was outside of this contributor’s specific area of expertise, & has since been removed."

The last to comment was the writer himself.

Mourdoukoutas tweeted Sunday, "Let me clarify something. Local libraries aren't free. Home owners must pay a local library tax. My bill is $495/year."

His tweet has since received over 7,000 comments, many saying their library card is the most valuable thing in their wallets.

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