Biological Tests Show that 50 Shades is a Dirty, Dirty Book

Coming out ofBiological Tests Show that 50 Shades is a Dirty, Dirty Book Uncategorized left field, here's another reason why ebooks are better than paper books: they're hygienic.

A pair of Dutch university professors have just finished a new study in which they took the 10 most borrowed books in the Antwerp lending library and ran them through a battery of toxicology and bacteriology tests. The results make me want to go scrub my hands.

The professors found that all 10 books tested positive for cocaine, unfortunately in concentrations that aren't high enough to get you high but will result in a positive result on a drug test (all the downsides but none of the fun). They also found that 2 of the books, including 50 Shades, tested positive for the herpes virus.

I know you're saying ewww right now, but I would hold off on that emotion. This result, as gross as it may be, should come as no surprise to anyone who has had Bio 101.

Biological Tests Show that 50 Shades is a Dirty, Dirty Book Uncategorized

Coming soon from 3M: a line of prophylactics for library books.

When I took the class years ago there was one section where we swabbed a wide variety of surfaces and grew cultures. If you had seen how many things were growing on a door handle you would probably want to douse yourself in antibacterial soap.

Herpes may be attention getting, but please note that there's no mention of whether they found Herpes A or B (not even in the original Dutch (Flemish?) sources). For all we know someone might have a serious problem with mouth sores, not an STD.

Also, I can't find any sign that the professors tested for other bacteria or viruses, and that makes me think that they went for this one detail just to shock us. The original source was a Dutch TV show after all, not an academic paper.

But just to be safe, I suggest that everyone start practicing safe reading. At the very least you could wear gloves and a mask when handling a library book, but I think it better to follow your mother's maxim: "Don't touch that. You don't know where it's been."

P.S. This post is brought to you by DuPont, maker of HazMat suits, and Trojan, maker of condoms.

Flanders News


About Nate Hoffelder (10081 Articles)
Nate Hoffelder is the founder and editor of The Digital Reader:"I've been into reading ebooks since forever, but I only got my first ereader in July 2007. Everything quickly spiraled out of control from there. Before I started this blog in January 2010 I covered ebooks, ebook readers, and digital publishing for about 2 years as a part of MobileRead Forums. It's a great community, and being a member is a joy. But I thought I could make something out of how I covered the news for MobileRead, so I started this blog."

8 Comments on Biological Tests Show that 50 Shades is a Dirty, Dirty Book

  1. This is hearsay. I have never had this problem myself. I don’t know anyone who has had this problem. I read about it in the newspaper.

    Since I have switched to eBooks, I won’t ever have this problem.

    What’s the problem? Bed bugs taking up residence in a library book in one home, and coming out again in your home when you borrow the book a week later. Yuck.


  2. FYI, Belgium is not a part of Netherlands đŸ™‚

  3. LOL, Dutch = Flemish. And they probably were Dutch trying to fly under the radar. BTW rubber gloves are the most dangerous weapon in the Netherlands.

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