Marin, CA library supporters are waging a boring war on book donation boxes placed around their city. The book donation boxes are placed by the Thrift Recycling Management company, a for-profit venture that recycles the items.
"Of the books collected in the bins, approximately 25 percent are resold, another 25 percent are donated to nonprofits, and the rest are sold for their value as pulp, [TRM co-founder Phil] McMullin said." MarinIJ
"Friends of the Library" groups complain that the books take away donations to libraries that could be used to fund the library through book sales or replace old library copies. TMR has been under suspicion for not being as charitable as they claim, selling most of the items instead of donating them as they claim. Marin Independent Journal
Okay, in this corner we have people profiting from old hippie ideals about saving mother earth. They weigh in at approximately the size of capitalism and are looking to make a buck on the feelings that people are doing good by the planet by recycling. They have made millions.
In the other corner we have people looking to enrich their lives by saying the library can benefit from a cubic ton of old National Geographics and books that may or may not have been pooped on by a rat. These people may or may not collect and sort the materials donated to the library, but do feel a sense of satisfaction when they vote to buy a computer or maybe that god-awful book shaped reading furniture for the children's department when they meet once a year.
Solution: Put the bins at libraries. Allow the library system to sort the materials it wants and give the for-profit the leftovers. Or just let the company do what it does until the Oregon Department of Justice shuts them down for being a fake charity. Or a five on five deathmatch, Friends VS Thrift in a winner take all pay-per-view for the fate of the county.