EBM and Clinical Support Librarians@UCHC

A blog for medical students, faculty and librarians about their use of evidence based medicine, clinical literature, Web 2.0, sources and search strategies

Libraries, Education, Academia, Books: “Print is Dead”? No. Undergoing change? Yes.

It’s a whole new world.

With these [graduate] students, “print is dead, really dead”… they want everything to be delivered digitally, or available virtually, and they go to the library as a last resort, unless they do not have dedicated workspace on campus. They also believe that there are too many libraries and that the existing libraries’ focus on disciplinary content works against the students’ growing concern with inter-disciplinarity. ”

Excerpt from a presentation given in 2007 by Steven Hiller, Director of Assessment & Planning, University of Washington Libraries (link – in ARL #256 below)

Association of Research Libraries (ARL) publishes a bi-monthly newsletter entitled ARL Report, of which ARL #256 (Issue: February 2008 – pdf format) recaps a forum held in October 2007 in Washington D.C. which was attended by 100 librarians, administrators, faculty or other members of the U.S. academic community. The conference, titled “Enhancing Graduate Education: A Fresh Look at Library Engagement”, was co-sponsored by ARL and Coalition for Networked Information (CNI).

This conference recap, written by Diane Goldenberg-Hart of CNI, is worth a read.

The incoming generation of graduate students and library users (Generation Y) has a quite different perspective on the use of archival materials… librarians have been “saving” centuries of accumulated knowledge in their archives. Just because it is not ‘online’ does not mean we can or should chuck it into the trashcan. However, the old-old library print materials should in fact be in the pipeline for digital preservation.

We can all probably agree on that.

Information scientists are generally a conservative lot. One of our main job functions has been to organize and preserve the materials given over to our care. To those of us in the library profession these days it is looking more and more like we are transforming ourselves – as Robin Dale describes in her presentation from April 2007 – into digital curators. That is definitely a good thing.

Also worth remarking on: the CNI site is where I found a link to a related scholarly blog, Digital Lives.

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Let’s move on to WOM (relating to Marketing by Word of Mouth).

For a radically different spin on books – as in reading material but not necessarily in print – read this blog post by Jackie Huba entitled “How the book publishing industry should reinvent itself” (June 16 2008 ).

(Being a health science librarian rather than a marketer, if I prove to be one of the last five persons in this world to have never heard about Dave’s Book (which Ms. Huba refers to), then mea culpa).

Thankfully, blogger Mitch Caplan does a good job of explaining what is, and what has been, with marketer Dave Balter‘s written materials.

The 2008 release of Mr. Balter’s book, The Word of Mouth Manual- Volume II, is an example of how digital, social and virtual media are creating new markets for consumers and redirecting ways in which current information is taken in – and consumed. Libraries, the traditional warehouse of information, are not even mentioned on this page. Note: Dave Balter is giving his book away digitally… don’t pay $45 for it on Amazon!

Dave Balter’s blog post about the book is here: http://www.bzzagent.com/monkey/

Seth Minkin created original artwork for this book.

This is Web 2.0 – bien sûrthere is a video and it is on YouTube:

Video Credit: YouTube.com and Bzzagent.com – All rights reserved

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Finally… You can read other digital books online at ChangeThis.

Thanks to Seth Godin for the link.

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