Global Lens Gets a Library Card!

Global Lens makes its long-awaited debut at public libraries across the U.S. 

Big books, small books, magazines and catalogs.  Shelves that stretch like buildings on a city block.  Millions of words by thousands of people, pressed onto paper and compressed into a building…

Ever since I was a child, I’ve had an affinity for libraries.  For me, they represent a space without limits or borders, a place of collected knowledge that lends itself to the imagination.  In fact, I wrote my first poem in a library (after checking out a book on haiku), and spent many afternoons as a teenager cultivating my then-nascent interest in film, sitting in a corner watching the classics [on a VHS player].

Of course, libraries have evolved since my childhood, and none more profoundly than the American public library; what once began with Benjamin Franklin and a social-activity of lending books to his friends has now evolved into a community institution, media center and learning resource.  And also, a crossroads of people and cultures, a place where new immigrants meet old residents, artists share space with academics and every language is within arm’s reach on a shelf.

And so, it’s only natural that we bring Global Lens to that environment. says: "Indie-film buffs, start popping your corn, because one of our newest film suppliers has enough enriching content for you to wax poetic until the cows come home."

This month, we launch a new partnership with for digital distribution of Global Lens to all public libraries in the United States.  Our goal is to do what we haven’t done since launching the series:  make Global Lens completely accessible to the public or rather, anyone who has the initiative to become a member of their local public library.

It’s a small decision with a big impact, and it goes hand-in-hand with another recent “decision”:  our partnership with the Association for Rural and Small Libraries (ARSL).

ARSL has been on our mind for quite some time now, largely because their mission is to create access, for their community, to the world at-large through their [sometimes small] institutions.  In that sense, they’re not unlike the Global Film Initiative and in many respects, are like all public libraries, whose goal is to provide a free and open resource from which we can learn, educate and expand our knowledge.   Collectively we all share a common purpose, which ultimately is why we decided to share Global Lens.

Global Lens Raffle @ the ARSL 2011 Annual Conference in Frisco, Texas

So, this month, look for Global Lens at your public library.   And, lest anyone get the wrong impression, this isn’t a “first” for Global Lens–check out the Park City Public Library, Memphis Public Library, and D.C. Public Library.   All are exhibition partners for the touring schedule of the Global Lens film series and much like my childhood, influenced our decision to finally get a library card for Global Lens!

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