[Videolib] Television series in public libraries

Jaeschke, Myles (mjaesch@tulsalibrary.org)
Fri, 27 Aug 2004 10:44:45 -0500

Hi Mike,

Certainly there is interest. However, our library budget for video/DVD will only go so far. With the amount of TV shows becoming available we just do not have the means to purchase these. The majority of our British television has been purchased because of requests even then we don't buy every one. We take reviews and awards into consideration when buying television shows and feature films.

It seems to me that the BBC type materials are not being released as Season 1, Season 2 and so on like a M*A*S*H* (currently up to season six on DVD at $30 a season which is one of the cheaper shows available per season) or Friends. You can buy one set off a British show and you're done, the exception being Upstairs Downstairs which indeed has several seasons. Cost is not the only factor here. I think I would be more inclined to purchase some TV if it were packaged like a best episodes of a series, similar to the recent Best of Saturday Night Live box set.

Blaine said earlier ..."I've had some requests for these, they're all still readily available in syndication and are shown multiple times daily in my market..." This is another reason that we haven't dived in to American TV. A good portion of these shows still are rerun on TV. Many statistics show that 65-75% of all US households have cable/satellite television and have easy access to these shows already. Of course you pointed out that the British shows are also rerun on cable too. I don't think they are quite rerun to the extent of the American TV shows, but perhaps I'm wrong on this.

-----Original Message-----
From: videolib-bounces@library.berkeley.edu
[mailto:videolib-bounces@library.berkeley.edu]On Behalf Of Mike Tribby
Sent: Friday, August 27, 2004 9:25 AM
To: 'videolib@library.berkeley.edu'
Subject: RE: [Videolib] Television series in public libraries

"If you purchase one season your customers will expect you to purchase the
following season and so on. We do purchase some of the British television
but that is all."

The above suggests a couple of questions to me:

If your customers will then expect the following season, doesn't that imply
patron interest?

And if one does collect British television series, does that imply that
British television is better than American television across the board? I
bow to no one in my appreciation of AbFab, but I would hardly put Father
Dear Father in the same class. But then I don't care for the Goon Show, so
perhaps my taste is the issue.

And an ancillary issue: some respondants to this thread have mentioned the
availability of high demand series on cable television as re-runs. Even out
here in the rural Midwest we have BBC America on the cable (enhanced or
expanded basic cable, but not premium) and anybody with access to PBS and/or
A&E arguably has a good deal of access to other British series.

Mike Tribby
Senior Cataloger
Quality Books Inc.
The Best of America's Independent Presses


Videolib mailing list