Reeling and writhing

There was some comment on the post I did about library journals a while ago. My concern was about impact: we go on about how much library skills and experience have to contribute but we ensure that the documentary record of those skills and that experience is buried in niche, off-web publications with diminishing impact.

I thought of that discussion as I fell across the Educause website earlier and was reminded that Educause Review and Educause Quarterly are openly available there for anybody to consult. These publications, and the Educause website itelf, bear the marks of an organization that actively wants to inform policy and influence practice.

It would be good to have an on-web publication venue for the reflective practitioner in the library community. Educause Review and D-Lib Magazine are potential models: the former serving a broad professional community, the latter serving a specialist cross-domain audience. The ARL Bimonthly Report is in this space also. However, while it carries material of general academic library interest, it does not have a strong network identity.

I wonder who is best served by ALA divisional 'professional' journals in this regard: the general reader or the writer who needs to publish for career reasons?

[Full disclosure: I was involved in the establishment of Ariadne, the UK-based network magazine of long(ish) standing.]

Comments: 2

Apr 25, 2005
David Bigwood

The ARL Newsletter needs to make it more convient for readers. They provide neither an RSS feed nor an e-mail alert of new material. Readers need to be notified of new material or they just stop revisiting the Web site. it is the same idea I've been pusing for our own Lunar and Planetary Information Bulletin.

Apr 25, 2005
Pat Stevens

Libraries could use the web more effectively to discuss the serious policy issues they face collectively. They also need to draw other related service providers within and outside their communities into these discussions. A better web presence could help bring those communities into the discussion.