[Videolib] Whither Media or What?

From: Seay, Jared Alexander <SeayJ@cofc.edu>
Date: Tue Apr 07 2009 - 07:39:43 PDT

Long intro - short question.


What to do with "media" items that are not "films?" Collect with films
or embed in regular collection?


This is an issue that our library has been struggling with and managing
to decisively avoid till now. Its part of the whole "where does media
belong in the collection" thing. We have made the monumental decision
to have our videos be a separate collection and departmental entity. I
have my dream job of being in charge of selecting and caring for films
(now of course in VHS and DVD and soon, no doubt, to be in some other
form), and the rest of the library is "books" (mostly).


I purposely chose the name of Media Collections for our new department
because in the back of my wee mind I suspected (and rather hoped for)
adding to the collection items that were "media" in nature, but not
necessarily "film." We de-accessioned our LP albums and small number of
books on tape when we acquired the collection two years ago. The audio
book thing (first books on tape, then CD, now mp3, soon who knows) is
still up for grabs since we don't officially collect them (yet). Many
libraries collect video games (or any games for that matter - digital or
paper). We don't to that either (yet).


Today I just received a hybrid if there ever was one. It's "Leonardo da
Vinci CODIC Atlantico." It's a DVD-ROM and elegant book in a boxed set.
It is beautiful to behold. Yet, our head cataloger was not sure if it
goes to me (Media Collections) or to the "regular" collection. Is it a
book or a DVD (ROM) or what? Of course it is both. The parts work
together to deliver information about a subject in multiple modes. So,
where to go? It's the "D" word that is the confusion I know. If it just
said CD, instead of DVD, it would have gone to the regular collection
without a thought, 'cause everybody knows that a CD is just an audio
book, and books of course go with the other books....right?


I told her to send it up. I'd love to have it of course. But, "just
because I want it "is hardly good reason (though not a bad start).
Since I am setting precedent here (I'm waiting for that first audio book
/ DVD-ROM / interactive game thing to fall from the sky any minute), I
would like to know what everyone else is doing with "media" things that
are NOT your average joe films. Are we "film" librarians or "media"
librarians, and what does that mean anyway? I know it's basically a
collection policy thing. But, what are all of you out there doing?


Awaiting thoughtful insights. Thanks.




Jared A. Seay

Reference Librarian

Head, Media Collections

Addlestone Library
College of Charleston

Charleston, SC 29424


Reference Office:


Media Collections:






VIDEOLIB is intended to encourage the broad and lively discussion of issues relating to the selection, evaluation, acquisition,bibliographic control, preservation, and use of current and evolving video formats in libraries and related institutions. It is hoped that the list will serve as an effective working tool for video librarians, as well as a channel of communication between libraries,educational institutions, and video producers and distributors.
Received on Tue Apr 7 07:40:17 2009

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