where we get our information

I’m moving house this week, so I’m living out of my inbox more than usual.

I’ve been getting emails about a Library Hotline article I was quoted in, from my talk at ALA. I gave a presentation with Louise Alcorn as part of the PLA track at ALA. My talk was called “Six Things You Maybe Didn’t Know About Rural Technology” You can see the pdf as well as links to Louise’s presentations on this page, there’s some great stuff about technology for small libraries. It went well and was well-attended.

LH covered it well but they did use this one line “How many of you know that tax forms must be filed online next year? she queried the audience. Many didn’t” What I actually said was that for many libraries they must help patrons GET their tax forms online. Small misquote, no big deal. It’s even possible I misspoke. In any case, I only knew about this when I started getting emails. Often if I post something in error to librarian.net I’ll get a comment about it, maybe two. In this case, I got ten emails within maybe a week or two from librarians asking me about this, and looking for more information about what they thought was a policy they hadn’t heard of. I replied that it was an error and finally wrote to Library Hotline who graciously agreed to print a correction.

This sort of thing always reminds me that in many ways large parts of our profession still rely on print-only sources for at least some of their keeping current. I know that every time I get a copy of Computers in Libraries or School Library Journal I always think “Oh hey I should write about that on librarian.net” and am always sad to not find the content online and linkable.

3 comments for “where we get our information

  1. ann
    29Jul08 at 10:38

    The content for SLJ and CiL is available online- in proprietary full-text databases. So the issue is not necessarily one of relying on print, but of these journals allowing open access to their content.

  2. 30Jul08 at 10:23

    “I’m living out of my inbox more than usual.” That is a wonderful turn of a phrase. I could say the same for myself, as Summer Reading has just about turned my brain to mush. Happy moving!

  3. 02Aug08 at 11:36

    I’m not sure where this confusion comes from, but all of School Library Journal’s editorial content is freely available on our web site (aka open access) and has been for over five years. The current issue is on the homepage, for earlier articles just use the search box. We are also available though proprietary databases. If one wants to get hot and bothered about open access and professional literature, look no further than ALA, where most of the publications (Public Libraries, Reference and Users Services Quarterly) are behind a paywall/membership wall. With so many librarians advocates for open access, it’s interesting that our largest professional organization chooses otherwise.

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