By February 6, 2009 0 Comments Read More →

The blogs are alive with the sound of swearing

Bouncing around the blogs today are audio outtakes from Barack Obama’s self-narrated audiobook Dreams from My Father, featuring quotations from Obama’s high school friend (but read in the voice of our president) using profanity and offensive terminology. This brings up a question I’ve often grappled with: Does hearing  a shock-laden term affect an audiobook listener more than reading the same words in the book? To my mind, the answer is yes. Or maybe this is something that is an individual reaction. Do audio publishers take into consideration the swear-factor when deciding to acquire a print title for the audiobook market? Curious minds want to know!

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About the Author:

Mary Burkey is an independent library consultant in Columbus (OH). An enthusiastic audiophile, she has served on all four of ALA's audiobook award committees as well as the Audies. In addition to writing the "Voices in My Head" column for Booklist, she is the author of Audiobooks for Youth: A Practical Guide to Sound Literature (ALA, 2013). Follow her on Twitter at @mburkey.

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