Patron Driven Acquisition (PDA)

The current NSR poll asks, “is your institution using patron driven acquisition to purchase eBooks.”  PDA is a business model, offered by (currently) 3 ebook aggregators  – NetLibrary, EBL, and Ingram Digital.  In this model, patrons determine which eBooks are purchased based on the eBooks they use.  There are many variations to PDA, but each variation does allow for librarians to pre-select groups of titles to choose from, establish budgets, and put controls in place to monitor usage and purchases.

For a more thorough look at PDA, you can read my upcoming Off The Shelf column in Booklist Online.  It will be published in the January 1, 2009 issue.  �

No Shelf Required Fan Club

Wow, my first member!  Thanks Lora.  I’m glad to see that the resources in NSR are assisting library students too.

Dear Sue Polanka,

I’m a library student at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign.  I just did a research project on the future of reference books for a collection development class.  In my research I came across several columns where you addressed just this topic.  I just wanted to write and thank you for being such a proponent for electronic resources and encourage you to continue motivating librarians to edge their libraries into an online reference model!  I’ve really enjoyed reading the columns!

Happy Thanksgiving!

Lora


Lora Smallman
Graduate Assistant, Instructional Services
Undergraduate Library
University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign

Rosen’s Teen Health & Wellness – this is what I call a Reference Experience

I recently attended the School Library Journal (SLJ) Summit and had the pleasure of working with Roger Rosen, of Rosen Publishing, on a panel about the future of digital reference.  Roger spoke about Rosen’s Teen Health & Wellness product.  I finally had a chance to look it over.  WOW, this is what I call a reference experience!

Some highlights:

  • Thousands of resources for teens on topics relevant to them, and written for them – like sexuality, dating, stress, alcohol/drugs, eating disorders, and even acne
  • In The News – a snippet of data from a published news story, with links to additional information in the database.
  • Cast Your Vote – Polls on relevant topics, to see how other teens feel/act.  After viewing the poll results, links to articles on a relevant topic are included
  • HOTLINES (Get Help Now)- easy to find access to a variety of national hotlines (Suicide, AIDS, Alcohol/Drugs, Eating Disorders, etc)
  • Ask Dr. Jan – a place to ask a question and get an answer from a licensed Psychologist
  • Personal Story – a teen story written about a particular situation, like cyberbullying.  Users may then SHARE THEIR OWN STORY by submitting it to Rosen.  Don’t worry, lots of confidentiality controls are in place.
  • Did You Know? – factoids on various health/wellness topics, with links to related articles
  • RSS Feeds of new content from “In The News,”  “Dr. Jan’s Corner,” and “Did You Know?”
  • Each entry is signed, and includes the name of the MD or other medical professional who reviewed the article.
  • Email, print, and cite this source options
  • Links for resources, glossary, and further reading
  • Date last updated for each article
  • Images

Besides the amazing amount of information in the Teen Health & Wellness database, teens have the opportunity to ask questions, write/share their own feelings, and find out how other teens are dealing with situations.  The RSS feeds, polls, and Q/A make this interactive.  The attention to detail in citing, writing, reviewing, and updating make the information very authoritative.  This should be in every household, not just school.  Congrats Rosen!

Gee, reading all of this makes me want to be a teenager again…..NOT!

But, it does make me wonder why these great features aren’t in other databases.  The product seems to build a community.  Can our generic reference ebook collections possibly do that?  I don’t see why not.�

eBook sales will increase in UK libraries

According to a survey conducted in the UK by NetLibrary, most libraries do intend to increase the acquisition of eBooks in the coming years.

The highlights:

300 libraries responded

  • 3/4 of academic libraries intend to increase eBook collections
  • 1/2 of public libraries intend to increase eBook collections
  • 85% of publics were interested in fiction eBooks
  • 65% of publics were interested in building an audiobook collection

for more information, contact uk@oclc.org

Europe’s Online Library – Europeana – Launched

**and crashed, unfortunately, due to popularity.  It’s currently down!  sp, 11/21 4:30 p.m. EST  The site hopes to be back up, on a more robust engine,  by mid December.

From Knowledgespeak.com

The European Commission has launched Europeana, a multimedia online library.  Over 2 million books are included as well as maps, recordings, photographs, archival materials, and more.  The digital materials were collected from the national libraries and cultural institutions of the EU’s 27 member states and are all cross searchable in one source – Europeana.�

Blog as if your life depended on it!

I posted a while back about a wonderful eBook site, DailyLit.  DailyLit sends me bits and pieces of eBooks to my email box each day, just enough to read for a minute or two.  The first title I chose (yes, because it was free) was 100 Ways to  Succeed by Tom Peters.  Yesterday, #39 arrived.  It said:

100 WAYS TO SUCCEED #39:
BLOG AS IF YOUR LIFE DEPENDED ON IT!

Blogging, I firmly believe, is the premier emergent marketing-brandbuilding-lovemark-creating tool of our times! It is the premier way to have intimate-engaging-informative-WOWing “conversations” with Clients and prospects! This all goes double for small enterprises and niche enterprises; and goes triple for the Professional Services; and works wonders in the Public Sector as well.

Do you see Blogging in these exalted lights? If not, why not? Please …  Blog-As-If-Your-Professional-Success-Depended-On-It. (Hint: I think it does.)

Begin today! Appoint yourself Chief Blogging officer. Or, better yet, Chief Intimate Client Conversations Officer!

I can’t tell you how happy I was to realize that finally, I had accomplished one of the (so-far) 39 ways to succeed.   Why am I bragging about this?  Well, because now it’s your turn.  No Shelf Required is here to provide a place for discussion between librarians, publishers, aggregators, book lovers, and spammers (oh wait, I delete those messages).   So comment, post, rant, suggest, get your eBook message out.  You’d be surprised how many people actually read this thing – worldwide!  It surprises me every day.

E-Reference Ratings from LJ

LJ just released E-Reference Ratings, “an evaluation of nearly 180 subscription based electronic resources in 14 subject categories.”  Of course, many of these are eBook platforms like Britannica, Credo, GVRL, Oxford, and Sage.   There was no category for eBooks, instead you’ll find them listed under the various subject categories.

Products were reviewed by a team of 8 reference experts and included 7 criteria:  scope, writing, design, linking, bells & whistles, ease of use, value.  Resources were given a star rating, 1 to 4 stars to indicate * poor, ** satisfactory, ***good, ****excellent  A brief paragraph also accompanied each resource.

According to LJ, “Because we know that online resources continually grow and evolve—a list of this nature can date quickly—E-Reference Ratings, which made a print debut in the November 15th Reference Announcements issue, will find its permanent home and reach its full potential on our web site. We intend not only to keep up with these ever-changing products (adjusting the ratings as necessary) but also to expand the number of databases in each category and venture into new ones. We hope to hear from all parties—librarians, publishers, and vendors—about how we can keep this tool thriving and make it even more useful.”

Congrats LJ!  This was no small feat.�

Widgets guide usage of eReference/eBooks

I love widgets.  Last week at the Charleston Conference I was on a panel discussing “bridging the google gap.”  I was to discuss ways libraries were bridging that gap through reference services.  Widgets was one of my answers.

Widgets can be embedded on multiple library web pages, course management systems, facebook, teacher/faculty websites, anywhere really!  Caution, my web designer friends always remind me to have one ONE search box on a page, otherwise it gets confusing.

There are many eBook/eReference vendors who provide widgets.  I’ve got links to some of them below.  If you know of others, send them my way and I’ll post.

Credo Reference – Search the entire Credo collection with their widget.  Some libraries have put the search widget on a reference page, as a starting point.  Now that Credo links to other sources through their “resource links” feature, users can start with traditional reference sources and move to journals or other databases of your choosing.   For a look at this feature, check out the  Watne Memorial Library .  You might also be interested in an informal review of the new Credo interface.

Gale/Cengage – GVRL in particular.    I am fond of this widget because you can establish subject collections of sets of titles.  Once you have the collection established, it can be placed in the widget and only those titles searched.  This is a fab idea for subject guides/pathfinders, or for class assignment links.

Encyclopaedia Britannica – see my recent post on these

Reference Universe – RU searches the indexes, TOC, and list of articles of both print and electronic reference titles.  Using your online catalog, they will connect the user to a reference source.  The widget opens up your entire reference collection.  St. Mary’s College of California has a great example of this widget.  Be sure to click on “reference.”

Palgrave, Nature Launch eBook platform

eBook collections and platforms are popping up faster than daisies these days.  New this month is the Palgrave Macmillan platform – Palgrave Connect.  This is a collaborative effort from Palgrave and Nature and will include eBooks in the Humanities, Social Sciences, and business areas.  About 4,000 eBooks are available with the launch.�

A blog discussing the news and issues surrounding eBooks, for librarians and publishers.