RE: Request for Information (Open Vs. Closed Stacks)

Deg Farrelly (
Mon, 8 Oct 2001 19:36:57 -0700 (PDT)

This same question was raised and discussed at some length almost exactly a
year ago. I am disappointed to see that once again all of the responses to
the question have been in regard to (and advocating) closed stacks.

At ASU West Library we shelve our videos on open stacks, albeit in special
high density compact shelving.

Furthermore, students, faculty, and local community all have borrowing
privileges allowing videos to be removed from the premises. (Community
borrowers are limited to 3 days, University folks one week)

We maintain separate closed stacks for those items that faculty wish to
place on Reserve, or that we consider irreplaceable.

Do we lose materials? Yes, some. Do the videos get out of order? Yes,

But we replace items when necessary, and shelfread regularly. And the
access is HIGHLY appreciated by our borrowers.

We also offer self-checkout, and allow faculty to order journal articles on
their own directly from Ingenta (UnCover) paid for from a deposit account.

We are committed to eliminating barriers requiring staff mediation in
routine access to materials.

I do not mean to sound pontifical or arrogant here.... BUT here are some
questions for those who maintain closed video stacks:

Do you lose books in your collection? Do the books in your collection get
out of order? Why not put ALL your materials in closed stacks?

(That is how the Chicago Public Library operated when I was in High School)

And finally.... What could your staff be doing with their time, if they
weren't retrieving materials?

I would love to hear responses from other academic libraries/media centers
that maintain open stacks for videos.

deg farrelly, Associate Librarian
Media/Communications Studies/Women's Studies
Arizona State University West
P.O. Box 37100
Phoenix, Arizona 85069-7100
Phone: 602.543.8522

> ----- Original Message -----
> From: Hornbeck, Patty <>
> To: Multiple recipients of list <>
> Sent: Friday, October 05, 2001 10:02 AM
> Subject: Request for Information
> > Dear Videolibbers,
> > This is an urgent request for information/opinions on open stack v.
> closed
> > stack storage of videos in an academic library. If you have pros and
> cons
> > that you can share with me, I would really appreciate it.=20
> > Patty
> > _________________________________
> > Patricia Hornbeck
> > Middlebury College
> > Sunderland Language Center
> > Middlebury, VT 05753
> >
> > (802)443-2268 phone
> > (802)443-2075 fax
> > Email: