Collection Development

Emerging Trends and Technologies in Libraries and Information Services Blog

The aim of the International Symposium on Emerging Trends and Technologies in Libraries and Information Services (ETTLIS-2010) is, once again, to bring researchers, academicians, business community and research scholars on a common platform to share their experiences, innovative ideas and research findings about the aspects of emerging trends and technologies in the field of knowledge resource centres and information services.

Access blog at: ETTLIS 2010 http://ettlis2010.ning.com/profiles/blog/list

MLK Jr. Papers to Be Permanently Housed at Morehouse College

In the years since the city of Atlanta acquired more than 10,000 of Dr. Martin Luther King's personal papers, the collection has been pored over by researchers and used in groundbreaking history courses at Morehouse College. Come February, the writings of Dr. King will be fully available to the public at the Robert W. Woodruff Library of the Atlanta University Center. Atlanta Journal Constitution has the story.

"My hope is that more and more people understand the genius and the creativity and the scholarship of Dr. King," said Loretta Parham, Library Director. "So many recognize him as the author of the "I Have a Dream" speech and not much more. He was a whole person and there's another story to tell."

The papers came to Atlanta in 2006 after Atlanta Mayor Shirley Franklin led an effort to purchase them from the King family before the collection was to be auctioned at Sotheby's. Morehouse, King's alma mater, owns the $32 million collection, which was secured by a loan from SunTrust Banks. Several private donors helped repay the bank loan, a feat completed last fall. Here is the link to the collection.

The Library Reloaded: Collections

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Tonight, we hosted my brother and sister-in-law for dinner. While I was cooking, I had asked them for their thoughts on what libraries shouldn’t lend. (The picture above is the PG version of the list created, recopied by me for better presentation.) I’d had asked them for their help because there has been a question gnawing on my mind since the weekend.

What is a collection?

In my opinion, the most common answer to this question is a very dull textbook one. It’s usually a list of mediums plus maybe a statement about how it is a reflection of the community that it serves. The better (and more accurate) answer is that everything falls on three lists: things we lend, things we don’t (or shouldn’t) lend, and things we could lend but we don’t. It’s this third group that I find to be the most interesting because I think it is something that people involved in collection development should consider more deeply. -- Read More

Not Just Some National Geographic, All Of It

It's the bane of many a public librarian. The phone rings, you answer it, and then politely decline the caller's offer to donate the last 60 years of National Georgraphic magazine to your library.

"Yes, I'm sure they're in fine condition. Oh? Been in your mother-in-law's house for the last 60 years huh? Yes, I know you want to help out, but we've got several years of it already. Yes, sir I can tell you're happy she's dead but we just don't have any use for that many magazines. No, actually they're not all that valuable - you do realize they print several hundred thousand at a time, right? Yes, so they're not exactly rare or anything."

Now there's a much easier way to get every single issue of National Geographic from the last 120 years and it doesn't involve any donations. You can buy it on its very own hard drive. That's right, you can get every issue of National Geographic since the dawn of humankind on a 160 GB external drive. As a bonus, the collection only takes up 60 GB, so you've got another 100GB to do with as you please.

I wonder if that'd be enough room for every issue of Popular Mechanics...

UT librarian Built Renowned Jewish Collection

Austin Statesman: Nathan Snyder worked as a bibliographer and cataloguer at the Perry-Castañeda Library, the main library on the U. of Texas campus. The Schusterman Center for Jewish Studies at UT dedicated a library to him in May — the Nathan I. Snyder Library. Snyder created an endowment of his personal collection of books and documents, worth between $15,000 and $20,000, which is at the center.

Snyder died of a brain tumor Sunday. He was 65.

Robert Abzug, a UT history professor and the director of the Schusterman Center, said Snyder single-handedly built up a collection of books used by Jewish studies scholars around the world.

"It's fair to say he helped create one of the most remarkable collections of Jewish studies at any public university in the United States," Abzug said.

Robert King, a UT linguistics centennial professor, said Snyder was shy and eccentric and lived for his work. King said Snyder toiled to build the library's collection — one of his biggest additions was a rare copy of the Torah from Czechoslovakia — and often stayed at the library until 8 p.m. and worked weekends.

Rest in peace.

How Britannica Defied the Odds

From BBC News online (posted on July 16, 2009): "Encyclopaedia Britannica has been ranked the 10th strongest consumer brand in the UK. With the internet dominated by free reference sites, what's its appeal?"

http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/uk_news/magazine/8150129.stm

OCLC Defends Records Policy, Faces Questions, Suggestions, and Criticisms

If you've been following along with OCLC’s recently revised—and suspended—policy regarding record-sharing, here's a couple of stories you'll want to check out.

OCLC’s recently revised—and suspended—policy regarding record-sharing: Norman Oder covers a Lively discussion at Midwinter Meeting, he writes OCLC's Karen Calhoun defends intent, apologizes about communication while others question OCLC’s path.

DON'T MISS Consideration of OCLC Records Use Policy: "We build bibliographic records as surrogates for the desired object, meaning that the surrogate is a means to an end – retrieving the described object – and not an end onto itself. We build indexes of these surrogates for patrons to use to discover information. All other factors held constant, the better the surrogate, the greater the chance the user will find the information they are seeking. The following discussion looks at the sources of records, the way they are built, and what it means to try to share them."

'But I Want Encyclopedias' Says British Library Patron in Letter to the Editor

"I couldn’t believe it. Oswestry Library (UK) no longer stocks encyclopedias. Before the refurbishment, it had both the Encyclopedia Britannia and the World Encyclopedia, the latter beautifully printed and in some respects the better of the two.

The librarian told me that encyclopedias were “old fashioned” (tantamount to saying that books were passe, old hat) and I’d have to go online. Well call me a Luddite if you like (I had an IT bypass yonks ago) but at 68 I’ve no desire to tangle with new technology." More from the Shropshire Star.

OCLC Claims Ownership of Data In OPACs

OCLC may be trying to pull something sneaky with its new policy of claiming contractual rights over the subsequent use of data created by OCLC. In other words, the data in library catalogues couldn't be used to make anything which competes with OCLC in any way.

Needless to say, this would have a hash chilling effect on the creation of open databases of library content.

As you might expect, the library blogosphere is on fire with the news. The podcast presenter at LISNews gave a commentary in the matter during LISTen #47.

Story from Slashdot.

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