[ModLib] Second Shot at Dust Jacket Date Range Project?

Scot Kamins kamins at modernlib.com
Thu Jun 28 20:50:47 EDT 2012

On Jun 28, 2012, at 2:53 PM, jwol wrote:

>  have an interest in knowing what years which jackets were in use.   
> It could help in dating a book at a glance in an eBay photo, and,  
> personally, I find each DJ more attractive than the subsequent  
> style.  For example, I prefer the style g to the h and all other  
> things being equal, would opt for or “upgrade” to a g over an h.   
> Also, as a collector, the more information available in reference  
> material, the  better.
> I am embarrassed I do not recall the call to arms.  What information  
> were you seeking?

Ah yes -- the pesky implementation details for the project. The goal  
is to find the earliest and latest appearance of a given dust jacket.  
One way to do it is to have everybody look in their collections to see  
if they have that DJ; if so, they would date the DJ and send that  
piece of data to me. I would keep ongoing records and post the  
"reported range" above that DJ's image.

Here's a way it might work: Let's say we're looking at the DJs for  
Bronte's Wuthering Heights. [http://www.modernlib.com/authors/bAuthors/bronteEJackets.html 
] . There are six DJs for that title. Call them (from left to right,  
top to bottom) WH-1, WH-2, WH-3 ... WH-6. You have a WH-3 dating to  
1939, so you send me that report. Above WH-3 I enter 1934 - 1939  
(because the date of the image previously reported was 1934, and yours  
is 1939).  Peterson, looking in his collection, sees that he has 1932  
for WH-3; he sends me that one, and I update the range to 1932 -  
1939.  And so it goes.

We could approach the DJs in a totally random way: Everybody decides  
on his/her own which DJ they want to report on—one of the Wuthering  
Heights or maybe a DJ by Faulkner or whatever, in a totally random way  
sending me data as they see fit.

Or we could say that this week we're looking at the DJs on books by  
O'Hara—sometime during that week everybody who wants to contribute to  
the success of the project and prove their worth as human beings (no  
pressure) will send me the dates of all the O'hara DJs in their  
collections. I like this method because with LOTS of DJs to consider,  
this would focus our attention more and promise quicker results.  And  
I suggest just one author a week so that people aren't overwhelmed by  
the task. (After all, this is supposed to be just a hobby.)

A possible bonus here is that previously unreported DJ images might be  

Scot Kamins
The short life of dogs is the Universe's cruelest jest.

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