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(Previous discussion continued)
Re: dropping serial check-in? Susan Andrews (09 Aug 2004 21:22 UTC)

Re: dropping serial check-in? Susan Andrews 09 Aug 2004 21:22 UTC

I have lurked through at least a couple of discussions on this subject, but
not said anything.  However, I discovered something during this last
discussion that I had not realized (i.e. you are apparently not concerned
about archiving your print subscriptions).  So now I have 2 questions.

1.  What do your auditors think about this (I would definitely cringe and
possibly start buying tickets for a non-extradition country, if I tried
this and then heard that an audit of the library was forthcoming).

2.  If the print titles that you are buying are not worth archiving, why
are you bothering to buy them?  I realize that in some cases you must buy
print to receive online, but if you are buying much where this is not the
case and you don't consider them worth archiving, I don't see the point in
spending the money.

Just curious,

Susan Andrews

At 01:44 PM 8/9/2004 -0700, you wrote:
> > I can't understand how any
> > library can justify not making sure they receive every item
> > they pay for.
>Ah, if only life were so simple.  Unfortunately, very few libraries
>actually have the option of making sure they receive every item they pay
>for, since most are able to pay for lots and lots of journals and have
>only a few staff members available to manage them.  In my library, we
>offer access to roughly 16,000 journals in either print or online format
>(or both).  With a Serials staff of 2.5, there's simply no physical way
>for us to make sure that every issue of every one of those journals
>arrives (or becomes available online) in a timely way.  Thus, we're
>forced to make a hard choice: if we can't manage every journal
>carefully, which ones will we manage carefully and which ones sloppily?
>In the past, we made that decision by submitting to what I call the
>Tyranny of Physical Format: if the journal arrived in physical format
>(and thereby forced us to pay attention to it), it got our attention; if
>it was made available online (and was therefore easy to ignore), it got
>ignored while we busied ourselves monitoring publication patterns or
>issuing second and third claims for the print titles.  That such a
>system could possibly be defended on grounds of "professionalism" is
>baffling to me -- it seems to me both irrational and deeply
>irresponsible.  When a professional librarian is forced to make a
>decision between what's going to be managed carefully and what's going
>to be managed sloppily, my hope is that the librarian will choose to
>manage most carefully those materials that will provide the most benefit
>to the library's patrons.  The specific choices a librarian makes will
>vary depending on many variables, of course, but I would hope the
>thought process would be roughly similar across the board: how can we
>secure the most benefit for our patrons given the limitations under
>which we have to work?
>Rick Anderson
>Dir. of Resource Acquisition
>University of Nevada, Reno Libraries
>(775) 784-6500 x273

Susan Andrews
Head, Serials Librarian
Texas A&M University-Commerce
P.O. Box 3011
Commerce, TX 75429-3011
"Your Success Is Our Business"