University of California’s Council of University Librarians’
Statement in Support of Dale Askey
March 26, 2013
The Council of University Librarians (CoUL) of the University of California joins the Association of
Research Libraries (ARL), the Canadian Association of Research Libraries (CARL), and others in asking the
founder of Edwin Mellen Press, Herbert Richardson, to drop his personal lawsuit against McMaster
University librarian Dale Askey.
As academic librarians, we believe that freedom of expression is of paramount importance to the free
flow of information in a civilized society. This freedom includes the right to voice one’s opinion and to
criticize. Librarians, as information professionals, are trained to evaluate vendor products when making
purchasing decisions and advising patrons on the quality of reading materials. CoUL decries the chilling
effect that a heavy‐handed lawsuit, like that brought by Mr. Richardson, has on the library profession
and on the ability of librarians to carry out their professional responsibilities.
Edwin Mellen Press has already dropped its lawsuit against Mr. Askey. We strongly encourage Mr.
Richardson to do the same.