Negative signage and the letter of the law

When I first moved to Massachusetts from California, I learned about the value of the private snowplow contract. When it snows hard, it’s really nice to have a pro come plow your driveway, even if it does set you back a little cash. But one winter when there wasn’t much snow, our (presumably cash-poor) plow guy would pay us a visit and send us a bill at the drop of a flake or two. We had to reach an agreement that he was not to plow unless more than four inches had already fallen. My housemates didn’t go for my solution: a sign in the yard that was exactly four inches tall that read

Do not plow the driveway

I was reminded of this recently because of a funny post at (“putting the rarin back in librarian since 1999”) about how the Patriot Act lets the FBI invisibly explore your library usage. If you’re a librarian, you are specifically forbidden from telling anyone that the goons have been sniffing around. But let’s say you’re a librarian and this policy really bugs you. What to do? What to do?

Here are’s five technically legal signs for your library. My favorite?

[First spotted on LibraryThing. Follow the link and read about the scofflaw library patron who ended up with a criminal record.]