Are users of government information citizens or “customers”? What would Ranganathan say? Barbara Fister addresses the topic of library attitudes to their communities in her newest post on InsideHigherEd
- Books Are For Use, by Barbara Fister, Inside Higher Ed. Library Babel Fish (January 23, 2014).
I have argued that as we increased access to information (for a high price), we’ve become more parochial (these collections are for authorized users only!) and more global (with our collections owned by distant corporations, not by institutions of higher learning).
We have written about this issue in terms of government information before here at FGI (E-Gov: are we citizens or customers? and Reflections on the end of a year and the beginning of a new year) but, as Fister says “market-based assumptions have so permeated our discipline they seem to be everywhere.” See for example Rick Anderson’s recent Ithaka S+R paper and our response: What’s love got to do with it? further thoughts on libraries and collections #lovegate.
Fister and colleagues are doing something about getting libraries right.They are surveying faculty at institutions of all kinds (particularly those in disciplines in which books matter) to assess support for a group of liberal arts college libraries to undertake founding an open access press. Read her post and forward the survey on to those who can help!
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