Logo der Stifung Hamburger Öffentliche Bücherhallen

Fake News about Bücherhallen

Since the end of August social networks have been spreading the deliberately false information that libraries in Hamburg accept books to use them as a heating source. A photograph of a poster with the logo of Bücherhallen Hamburg suggests that Bücherhallen created the poster. Stiftung Hamburger Öffentliche Bücherhallen has filed a police report for abuse of our logo and spreading false information.

Library Director Frauke Untiedt says, "Bücherhallen espouse well-researched facts and reliable information. We therefore are determined to take action against the lie. It is regrettable that people resort to fake news about libraries to reinforce their own political opinions."

First enquiries by baffled citizens reached Bücherhallen on Tuesday, 30 August 2022. They had come across a video reporting that Hamburg"s libraries collected books to use them as a heating source. The video came with a poster that said, "Dear Reader, As a result of the current situation we treat unnecessary [sic!] books as used paper and recycle them for future use as a heating resource. Library Management." The video has also gained cross-regional attention.

We seize the opportunity that obviously false news offers to highlight some - genuine - Bücherhallen Hamburg offerings:

We do accept well-maintained, current literature for our own flea markets and to supplement our media stocks. The flea market at the main library at Hühnerposten is a significant funding source for the foundation"s volunteer work projects.

With the #dubisthier [you are here] project, which is supported by the Federal Cultural Foundation, we take a firm stand against hate speech and fake news and for moral courage on the internet: https://www.buecherhallen.de/dubisthier.html

Bücherhallen Hamburg wholeheartedly support the press release of the German Library Association "Bibliotheken sind Zufluchtsorte in der Krise [Libraries are Shelters in a Storm]" and will continue to offer support and premises to the people in Hamburg.

Like any other public institution we comply with the Federal Energy Saving Regulation and support the energy saving plan of Hamburg"s senate.


Bücherhallen Hamburg are used by 3 million people annually, which makes them the most visited cultural institution in Hamburg. They are also Germany"s largest public library system. 33 district libraries and 2 library buses offer their premises to share experiences and network and ensure that Hamburg"s citizens stay informed. Since June 2022 Bücherhallen"s FlexiBib service has been available to persons of age holding a Bücherhallen card at 18 libraries. They can use their Bücherhallen card to enter the library premises outside of staffed service hours.