[Videolib] Public Libraries and Documentaries

Herownword@aol.com
Fri, 10 Sep 2004 13:59:31 EDT

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I have been following this discussion with a great deal of interest and
would like to add my viewpoint. A statewide resource librarian called me a
couple of years ago and informed me that a large national distributor had just
told him--repeatedly, because he called back several times to be sure--that Her
Own Words was no longer in business and there was no information available
on where we might have gone. Since Her Own Words has had the same mailing
address and phone number since its founding in 1986, and since the librarian was
based in the same city as me and we had met in person, he looked up Her Own
Words in the local telephone directory and called me. I assured him that we
are still around and all of our titles are still available. Since he had
been repeatedly told that the large national distributor could not obtain Her
Own Words titles and since our videos are of particular interest in Wisconsin,
he was able to get special permission to order them directly from us. So I
would just like to raise the additional point that cost factors, challenging
as they are for independent producers, are not the only barriers we face in
comparison to much larger producers (who of course sell in much larger
quantities). How many librarians across the country have been told that Her Own
Words is defunct and accepted that at face value simply because one of the
largest media distributors in the world said so (even though every title we have
ever released has been reviewed nationally and many have won awards)? Only one
librarian has ever called me to question such disinformation. Okay, it's a
tough world and independents need to find other ways to publicize their work
than huge conglomerates that might prefer that we don't exist. Still,
public, college, university, and school librarians have been among the best friends
Her Own Words has had over the years and I wanted to contribute this
viewpoint of how consolidated ordering in particular affects producers you might not
even know about.

Jocelyn Riley
Her Own Words
PO Box 5264
Madison WI 53705-0264
HerOwnWords.com & NontraditionalCareers.com websites
_herownword@aol.com_ (mailto:herownword@aol.com) email

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