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Re: new serials librarian seeking advice regarding microfilm collection (Steve Black) Stephen Clark 21 Jun 1999 17:41 UTC

---------- Forwarded message ----------
Date: Mon, 21 Jun 1999 11:48:42 -0400
From: Steve Black <blacks@ROSNET.STROSE.EDU>
Subject: Re: new serials librarian seeking advice regarding  microfilm              collection (Vani Murthy)

> I am new to this profession, and I am now facing the dilemma of whether I
> should continue to maintain and expand the library's microfilm collection
> after recently acquiring electronic journals.  I am under pressure(from my
> colleagues) to cut down the microfilm collection, and to discard several
> titles such as New York Times, and The Washington Post due to lack of
> space and money, and also because back-files are available online for the
> subscribed electronic journals and newspapers. I am wondering if this is a
> wise thing to do.

It is not wise to discard microfilm.  The online versions will no doubt be
available, but it's way too early to tell how expensive backfiles will
become in the future.  If space is critical, find storage for them
somewhere.  But don't throw them away.

For current microfilm subscriptions, online full-text is not the same as
page images.  The online I'm aware of leaves out advertisements and
classifieds, and perhaps other items, too.  If your patrons only need the
text of articles, that's okay.  But a design student, or someone wanting to
compare job opportunities today with those X years ago will be very unhappy
if you cancel.

Librarians are the only people who think about the students who will be
around in 100 years.  Keep them in mind.  No one else will.  They will thank
you, even if they don't know who you were.

Steve Black
Reference, Instruction, and Serials Librarian
Neil Hellman Library
The College of Saint Rose
392 Western Ave.
Albany, NY 12203
(518) 458-5494