Re: Standard Reference and ILL Source Falling into the Cracks Jesse Holden 06 Mar 2007 21:16 UTC

Depending on how much collective interest there is for this resource, it
could be set it up online as a wiki. Then it could be updated and edited
in real-time. Perhaps the number of responses to this idea could be used
to gauge whether or not there is a critical mass of interested

Jesse Holden
Ordering Librarian
Stanford University Libraries

Leland Alkire wrote:
>   We just received word from Thomson Gale that the monograph Periodical
>   Title Abbreviations, just issued in its 17th edition and containing
>   over 240,000 cryptic short forms and their full titles, will be
>   discontinued once this latest press run (January '07) is exhausted.
>   Dispite urgings to do so, Thomson Gale does not plan to issue the
>   work in digital form.   The issue at Thomson Gale appears to be one
>   of "no big bucks involved so why should we bother?"   A common story
>   in publishing these days.
>    PTA has been of value to reference and ILL librarians for over 30
>   years in larger research institutions and other libraries.  It would
>   be a shame if it were to die without an effort to find another way to
>   continue the service that it has provided.
>   I have been the editor of this work since the 1970's and hold the
>   copyright.  Any ideas out there about where I should take this
>   reference source next?  We could simply put it on the net as a free
>   source or maybe Google or Yahoo would take it in, but unless someone
>   keeps updating it with the thousands of new short forms that continue
>   to be created by the information world it will lose its currency.  I
>   am turning 70 and am in retirement as an former librarian, so there
>   is some future limit to my role in this.  My wife, still working as a
>   librarian (schools) has been the other editor.  We have given a great
>   deal to this effort over the years and cannot bear to just let it
>   drop.  We have thought of contacting a larger university press to see
>   what interest might exist.  Any ideas would be appreciated.
>    Beyond this, our thanks go out to all the librarians who offered
>   those wise and sound suggestions toward the improvement of PTA over
>   the years.  You made a difference to many a perplexed researcher
>   - all over the world.
>   Lee Alkire
>   Reference Librarian, Eastern Washington University, Retired