Code of Ethics

Update November 2022: We’re working on a revised edition of the Zine Librarians Code of Ethics! Find out how you can be involved in revising/updating/embiggening the ZLCoE:

Zine Librarians Code of Ethics (November 2015 edition) is now available in beautiful zine format for printing (pdf), a Web-readable version, or as a boring Word document.

Cover of Zine Librarian Code of Ethics Zine

Zine Librarian Code of Ethics Zine – click to download a printable copy (flats).

From the introduction:
This document emerges from years of challenging and joyous conversations about the work we do with zines. As caretakers of these materials, in our roles as librarians and archivists—independent, public and academic alike—we believe in a set of core values that inform and guide our work. We disseminate those values here in order to communicate openly and build trust.

This document aims to support you in asking questions, rather than to provide definitive answers. Guidelines may not apply uniformly to every situation, but include discussion of disputed points. This gives zine librarians and archivists ideas about what has been challenging in the past and how other zine custodians have dealt with those issues. These points can guide conversations with users, institutions, authors, donors, and communities, including other zine librarians and archivists.

The Zine Librarians Code of Ethics is a tool to be used for acquiring, managing, preserving, and making accessible zines in a library setting, whether the collection is housed in a public, academic, or special library; an archives; or a basement. It is not intended to be prescriptive or the absolute word on the subject.

We started drafting this at the 2014 Zine Librarians (un)Conference in Durham, NC and worked on it collaboratively over time and space. This is a snapshot of a living movement. We expect the Zine Librarians Code of Ethics to change over time, adapting as zine community mores evolve. Your feedback is welcome and wanted: zinepavilion at gmail dot com.

Created by: Heidy Berthoud, Joshua Barton, Jeremy Brett, Lisa Darms, Violet Fox, Jenna Freedman, Jennifer LaSuprema Hecker, Lillian Karabaic, Rhonda Kauffman, Kelly McElroy, Milo Miller, Honor Moody, Jude Vachon, Madeline Veitch, Celina Williams, and Kelly Wooten (who clip-arted the hell out of this zine).

Creative Commons License
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial 4.0 International License.
Translation: Share it! Adapt it! Attribute and Cite!
Print it out and give it away for free (don’t charge)! Seriously!