No, this is not the newest martial art craze. I just grew tired of the likes of Bookcrossing and Bookmooch, which require you to tiresomely and lovingly handcraft the data of each book onto a website separately, or put labels on them or track points or mail them or other things that people with a lot of time in their hands do.

It was all just too much work for me, so I'm introducing bookboxing!

Rules are simple:

  1. Get a box
  2. Put all books you want to recycle in the box
  3. Give the entire box to a friend
  4. Friend takes out books he wants, puts in books he wants to recycle
  5. Friend gives the entire box to someone else.

That's it. ;-)

(Optionally, you can introduce book expiry by using some mechanism you can think of so that people can get rid of the book once it's obvious nobody wants it. And yeah, there's nothing stopping people from selling those books. Think of this as the Creative Commons Attribution version of Bookcrossing ;-)

Update: Mikko S mentioned to me at Ropecon that they figured out a way to do book expiry: just put a piece of paper between the pages of every book in the box. When you see a book with three or more pieces of paper sticking out of it, you know that it's ripe for recycling via other means.


Very nice idea!

And for those that reach the expiry date, there's that shelf in Kamppi centre (ground floor, north corner) where you can leave books you no longer want for others to pick up.

--Hugo, 24-Jul-2011

Thanks for reminding me.

Now a friend of mine commented something that might be useful. It would be a great idea to put a sticker in each book that you received in a box and didn't take. Then if there are, say, three stickers in a book, you can throw it away instead of letting it wonder endlessly.

I would also like to take this opportunity to advertise that the Sello library is going to host a book recycling event on saturday August 27. Anyone can bring their books in and can take whatever they want from the recycle shelves. There'll also be an auction for old books (100+ years kind of old) removed from their collections that day.

--Mikko, 03-Aug-2011

I would strongly suggest you mark for removal books that you *neither* read nor kept. It would be wasteful to throw away books that everyone who has received the box has read, but no one wants to keep forever, I find.

--Janka, 07-Aug-2011

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