Collection Development

A Copy of the Original Star Wars Script Unearthed in a Canadian Library

The all things Science Fiction site, i09, tells of an interesting find at the University of New Brunswick library,

"File this under “Why we need libraries and librarians”: A copy of the original shooting script for Star Wars Episode IV was found sitting on a shelf in the University of New Brunswick’s library in Saint John. And it may settle whether or not Han shot first."

Careless Weeding or Something Else?

From The East Bay Express (Alameda Cty, CA):

Library administrators are discarding older books in bulk, prompting a backlash from longtime staff members.

Library administrators have ordered staff to discard books in bulk. With increased funding for materials this fiscal year, managers are making room for newer books and as a result have been trashing older ones in mass quantities, staff members said. The practice, they said, has been rushed and haphazard — and not in line with the standard guidelines for "weeding," the term librarians use to describe the process of moving books out of collections. In Albany, thousands of good books that could be donated or given away are instead ending up in the trash, the employees said. They noted that while this policy is especially widespread at their branch, it appears that this careless discarding is happening across the Alameda County Library system.

"Everyone is amazed by the amount of stuff going to the garbage bins," said Dan Hess, a children's librarian in Albany. He has worked at that branch for four years and has been an employee of Alameda County Library for fourteen years. "It's like forty years and forty different brains thinking what should be in the library [are being] swept away in two months," he said. "We're having this infusion of new money and materials that are coming very fast into the library. It's pushing us to change the criteria for what we are discarding." Hess said that managers have directed staffers to effectively remove most books bought before 2001, with little regard to the content, condition, or other factors librarians would typically take into consideration. "All you have left is the new. To me, that is not a library."

And Yet Another Urbana Story...

Source: State Journal Register
Dateline: Urbana IL — Some Urbana residents are upset and calling for the library director's resignation after thousands of books were mistakenly removed from the shelves.
(See two previous articles below)

Director Debra Lissak says the removal at the Urbana Free Library was a "misstep" and some of the titles are being returned.

The (Champaign) News-Gazette says workers removed art, gardening, computer science, medicine and cooking books from the stacks when they were culling the collection to remove volumes that were more than a decade old.

About half the library's 66,000 adult non-fiction books meet that threshold, but not every older book was removed because the process was halted.

LISTen: An Program -- Episode #247

This week's program brings another retransmission from the Voice of America where the continuing cyber-snooping situation is discussed. Stephen tells a tale of how communications metadata can be used in a benign but contemporary way. A news miscellany is also presented.

Related links:

Download here (MP3) (Ogg Vorbis) (Free Lossless Audio Codec) (Speex), or subscribe to the podcast (MP3) to have episodes delivered to your media player. We suggest subscribing by way of a service like Matériel purchasing needs of the Air Staff can be found from time to time via Amazon where such can be purchased and sent to them.

This work is licensed under the Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike 3.0 United States License. To view a copy of this license, visit

Affection for PDA

An interesting article reporting on a recent session at the meeting of the American Association of University Presses (AAUP), relating a discussion about patron-driven acquisitions (PDA) and its impact on library collection development.

"Libraries...are beginning to flip the process of collection-building on its head by striking deals that let their patrons’ reading habits determine which works they purchase."

Libraries Debate Stocking ‘Fifty Shades of Grey’ Trilogy

Not a new topic on LISNEWS but now the story is in the New York Times.

The enthusiasm for the trilogy has forced library officials to dust off their policies — if they have them — on erotica.

Full article

Librarian wins $20,000 Graphic Novel Library Collection at Texas Library Association's Annual Conference

AUSTIN, TEXAS --- April 15, 2011 --- At the Texas Library Association’s (TLA) Annual Conference held in Austin, Texas, April 12–15, <a href="">Eduardo Zepeda from Weslaco Public Library</a> was the lucky recipient of the $20,000 prize in the Great Graphic Novel Library Giveaway, sponsored by Brodart Company, Diamond Book Distributors, and <img src=""> The Great Graphic Novel Library Giveaway included more than 700 hand-selected graphic novels from Diamond Book Distributors as well as fixtures and furniture provided by Brodart. The collection also featured the entire list of graphic novel titles selected for TLA’s Maverick Graphic Novel Reading List and the American Library Association’s (ALA) Great Graphic Novels for Teens list. Zepeda, the very enthusiastic winner selected from a group of 20 finalists, said, “This is tremendous, as the books will be a great addition to our graphic novel collection. We look forward to sharing this prize with our patrons and seeing readers sitting on the couch reading and enjoying the books.” Martin Mata, also from the Weslaco Public Library, shared, “The couch will be placed in the new learning commons, where we have a plasma TV and no seating area for people to be able to enjoy it.”

Project MUSE Editions and the University Press e-book Consortium (UPeC) Announce Merger

Project MUSE has been the go-to source for scholarly ejournals in academic libraries for years, and now that go-to source will soon include ebooks from the University Press e-book Consortium. The two recently <a href="">announced the merger</a>, which will launch on January 1, 2012.

Science Researchers on Google Scholar, Web of Science, and PubMed

Shifting Sands: Science Researchers on Google Scholar, Web of Science, and PubMed, with Implications for Library Collections Budgets , Issues in Science and Technology Librarianship, Fall 2010
Authors: Christy Hightower, Christy Caldwell

A study done by two librarians named Christy at UC Santa Cruz in Issues in Science & Technology Librarianship. Interesting implications for content budgets and publishers...

Letter in Library Journal

The following letter may in the May 15th issue of Library Journal. I would be interested to hear people's comments about this letter.
I may have missed a paradigm shift in LJ Book Review policy. LJ reviewed Dorothy Hamilton's Love What You Do: Building a Career in the Culinary Industry (LJ 4/1/10, p. 83), published by iUniverse, possibly the largest print on demand company currently in existence. While I don't in any way impugn the quality of some self-published works-especially given that the large publishers are primarily motivated by dollar currency and not idea currency-I really don't think reviews of self-published works are useful or helpful for collections librarians working with limited budgets and for clientele whose reading choices are largely driven by whatever is reviewed in the mainstream media.

In any given fiscal year, I am typically besieged by dozens of authors peddling their self-published works. In an attempt to mediate sympathy with fiscal responsibility, the policy I instituted...was to welcome donations of self-published works but not to purchase them. Generally, the authors are content just to have their works in the local public library.... Even when a self-published title seems germane to my collections mandate, the line has to be drawn somewhere.

Of course, it becomes awkward when library patrons request this material, but it usually turns out that they are either thinly veiled friends or family of the author.... At the moment, I have a shelf of these books in my office waiting to be cataloged. It is even more difficult to explain to these same people that the cost of acquiring the book doesn't factor in the costs of cataloging and processing. I'd be interested in hearing how other collections librarians handle this.

-Eddie Paul, Bibliographic & Information Svcs., Jewish P.L., Montréal


Subscribe to Collection Development