I noticed a couple of days ago that the Friends of Independent Bookstores blog was down. All I get is a big blank error page whenever I visit. I was hoping it was just technical trouble. But it seems Larry Portzline has pulled the plug on his project to travel/support/raise awareness of the value of independent bookstores. For more than five years…
Portzline has been pushing for a national surge in independent bookstore recognition. He’s been at trade shows, been in newspapers and all over the internet. But it seems that he’s thrown in the towel. From what I gather from here and here, no one was willing to put their money where their mouth was. Which is a shame, but kinda to be expected.
I mean we are dealing with independent bookstore owners from all over the country. I can’t imagine getting any kind of a collective commitment from the group. That has to be a tough thing to do.
But Larry was doing it. And I guess he took it as far as he could. It’s a shame that the support wasn’t there when it was time to act. Maybe someone will pick up where he left off. Or better yet, maybe Portzline will take some much needed time to recharge and pick it back up himself.
2 thoughts on “Indie bookstore blog is no more”
I’m really sorry to hear about this. Larry had a wonderful idea. The indie selling community is still very scattered and diverse and in many ways not cohesive for the common good. I still believe that a goodly part of the reason is lack of computer skills on the bookseller’s part. If you can’t manage a store by using a an inventory control system, how can you hope to have any spare time to do the necessary social networking and community service that needs to be done? Maybe as the next generation of booksellers come on board their extra level of computer savvy-ness will help this kind of grassroots movement succeed.
Hoping for the best for you Larry!
I totally agree with you about it being a wonderful idea. And I see your point. From where I sit (in front of my computer) Larry did everything right in building a community of support. But if the stores themselves lack the tech skills to see the support and capitalize on it, I imagine they would stop short of committing.