He's the library system specialist for the Maine State Library, in Augusta. He's also the man behind the Hall of Shame, a Web site gaining international attention by exposing defective imprints.
Clark noticed discussions about new books falling apart were a common topic on Internet newsgroups frequented by librarians. He chose to act. Posting on various newsgroups, Clark invited librarians to tell him which titles were falling apart.
In return, he promised to feature the titles on his personal Web page. Clark's Hall of Shame was born. Little did he know it would become a lightning rod for librarians and textbook buyers around the world.
"My intent was just to get a venue for people to let some steam off," Clark says. "The next thing you know, it developed legs. I did this in response to a collective frustration on the part of the library community, which seems to be shared not only nationally, but internationally."
The problem isn't limited to library books. Reports are coming in from higher education as well.
"I've had a couple of medical and academic libraries that forwarded very expensive books of text material," he says. "There's one from a medical college library in Australia that cost $600 Australian, and it fell apart almost immediately. That gets your attention pretty quick."
As the volume of bad book reports grew, Clark's librarian instincts kicked in. He categorized and ranked the offenders.
" 'Mad Cows' are books that have been reported once," Clark says.
" 'Roaches' have been reported two to four times. 'Real Dogs' have been reported between five and 10 times. And 'Absolute Stinkers' are the ones that are reported over 10 times."
Topping Clark's rogue's gallery: AOL Time Warner. Its Warner and Little Brown imprints garnered the highest number of librarian complaints. Other top offenders: Knopf, Simon & Schuster, William Morrow, St. Martin's, Penguin Putnam, Harper Collins, Scholastic.