Weeding, also known as de-selection, is a process of removing library materials form collections based on certain criteria. Weeding is a necessary process that libraries continuously perform.
Weeding is vital because it saves shelf space (by removing overstuffed shelves and creating room for new books), makes it easier to browse the collection (and thus saves time), removes outdated material, makes the collection more appealing, and more.
When weeding, consider factors such as the age of the material, last circulation date, number of circulations, condition, if the system has other copies of the book, or if the book is a part of a series. This is similar to the MUSTIE acronym: Misleading, Ugly, Superseded, Trivial, Irrelevant, and Elsewhere.
This page highlights different weeding resources to help make sure the library's shelves are full of relevant, up-to-date, and enjoyable materials.
The definitive resource on weeding is the CREW manual, which was created by the Texas State Library and Archives Commission.
The CREW manual explains why weeding is important, it covers the weeding process, and it also offers weeding assistance on specific categories (nonfiction, fiction, graphic novels, periodicals, children’s books, young adult fiction, etc.).
Key points to take away from the CREW manual:
There are many places to sell books online for either a profit or for books in return. If these don't seem to fit your needs, you can host a book sale, repurpose the books into art supplies, recycle the materials (Only the pages of a hardcover book are recyclable), or donate the materials.
If those programs don't look like they're a fit for your library or collection, consider looking at the following programs: AbeBooks, AbeBooks Book BuyBack Program, Alibris, Biblio, Discover Books, eBay, or PaperBack Swap.