Silence in Sussex Library sign now

Dear Sussex Library,

We the undersigned are of the opinion that the culture in Sussex Library discourages serious academic work. Conversation, food, drink, Skype and mobile phone use are all now endemic, and those of us who expect and require silence are served very badly by the division of the library into “quiet” and “non-quiet” zones.

We believe that the division of the library space into “quiet” and “non-quiet” zones is inappropriate and ineffective, because sound travels all over the library. A complaint from one student to another about noise is routinely rebuffed with the reply that “this isn’t a silent space”. This reply is, unfortunately, supported and justified by current library policy. Our view is that the whole library space except the cafe and special, designated, closed-off rooms for group work, *should* be silent, and the library should be doing its utmost to enforce this.

We therefore ask that Sussex Library, in line with academic libraries the world over, enforce the silence of the entire library space; that it take more robust measures to prevent the consumption of food and drink in the library; and that it altogether ban mobile phone use and Skype.

These demands are not radical. They are not extreme. They would, if met, merely bring Sussex Library in line with other academic libraries. The library should be a haven of peaceful study. At the moment, it is a failed space, dominated by a culture of noise, in which silent readers are a frustrated minority. This situation is absurd, and we demand that it be reversed.

Yours,

The Undersigned

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Joseph LunaBy:
Culture and SocietyIn:
Petition target:
University of Sussex Library

Petition community:
Students & Staff of the University of Sussex

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