Re: [Videolib] video browsing collection: LOC or "some other system"?

From: <ghandman@library.berkeley.edu>
Date: Wed Aug 12 2009 - 08:18:31 PDT

Well...I was thinking about the issue of open vs closed collections last
nite (get a life, Gary)and it occurred to me that a the decision to go one
way or another has a great deal to do with a number of critical factors:
the nature of the institution and its clients; the nature/size of the
collection; the collection budget; and--most important--the short and long
term mission of the collection. Such a decision must also take into
consideration evolving content markets and access trends.

My fairly steadfast "anti-open" position stems from the fact that Berkeley
has a very large and very diverse collection: a mix of tape and DVDs; a
mix of fiction and non-fiction films; a mix of inexpensive home video and
costly indie stuff, commonly found titles and rarities. The collection
serves multiple functions and missions (and this is a key factor): first
and foremost, as a collection supporting specific curricular needs; as an
interdisciplinary research collection; and, only lastly, as a general
entertainment and extracurricular viewing resource.

Our policy of not circulating materials to students (for screening outside
of MRC)and our closed stacks are the thing students dislike most about
us...they bitch endlessly about it, and I'm vaguely sympathetic. These
complaints have to be balanced with the benefits of preserving and making
available materials which are often central to teaching...materials which
increasingly have a sneaky way of becoming "archival" over time due to the
vagaries of the distribution market. Believe me, the ire of a faculty
person who is unable to instantly score a title needed for class screening
far outweighs the ire of a student who wants the same or others titles for
recreational viewing.

I'm pleased to hear that shrinkage isn't an issue for you, Susan...you
must have a stand-up campus population. In my experience, it's even
difficult to get faculty to bring stuff back on time...I can't imagine the
complete havoc wreaked in a world in which students had a direct whack at
the collection.

One has to wonder, also: in an age when recreational access to popular
video titles is ubiquitous and cheap, shouldn't the long-term preservation
and curricular support mission of academic video collections take
precedent over other uses? And shouldn't the organization and access
policies of collections support these goals?

Gary Handman

> Eh, I'm not as sure you'll see the inventory shrinkage Gary is
> suggesting, Scott. We've had our VHS collection in open stacks for a
> good 7 or 8 years and shifted the DVDs from closed to open 3 years
> ago. Last year we also made the switch to shelving the DVD *cases*
> in the stacks but storing the discs themselves in sleeves behind the
> circ desk. We had a similar jump in circulation after going to open
> shelving, with very little inventory shrinkage, *especially* since
> this last step of separating the discs from the cases was instituted.
>
> After much discussion and disagreement, we decided to not interfile
> the VHS & DVD, although they're located in the same general area. My
> contention is that people who want to just browse tend to know which
> format they want, and having to wade through both can be
> annoying. We also use LC call numbering, for what that's
> worth. Good luck, Maureen!
>
> Susan Albrecht
>
>
> At 04:48 PM 8/11/2009, you wrote:
>>...a 30% increase in circulation...hmmm. Nifty.
>>
>>Check-back in with us re "inventory shrinkage" figures in a year or so,
>>Scott.
>>
>>Gary Handman
>>
>>
>>
>>
>> > Hi Maureen,
>> >
>> > First, I congratulate you. We moved our collections from closed to
>> > open 2 years ago, and just last year we witnessed a 30% increase in
>> > circulation with no real impact on instructor access or loss of
>> > materials! When we moved our collections we actually reprocessed
>> > many of our materials to LOC from a proprietary system. Poor tech
>> > services essentially shut down for us for 3 months, however!
>> >
>> > We have our VHS and DVD materials interfiled with the call number
>> > ranges listed on the end caps. Generally, patrons arrive either
>> > knowing what they are looking for from the online catalog, or they
>> > browse (typically the full length feature films PN's). Patrons seem
>> > to be very comfortable finding the materials or they ask for
>> > assistance at the front desk. If you want to consider an alternative
>> > I would look at Barb Bergman's classification, which takes accentuates
>> > forms/genre much more (correct?).
>> >
>> > One last thing, I am not certain if you are considering "video store"
>> > shelving or more traditional. If you do go the traditional route,
>> > make certain that tech services labels the DVD spines. They only did
>> > the front cover initially, and this made shelf reading more
>> > troublesome. If you have more questions, give me a holler!
>> >
>> > -Scott
>> >
>> >
>
> Susan Albrecht
> Acquisitions Manager
> Wabash College Lilly Library
> Crawfordsville, IN
> x6216
> albrechs@wabash.edu
>
> *********************************************************************************
> "If you choose not to decide, you still have made a choice."--Neil Peart
> *********************************************************************************
>
>
>
> 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.
>

Gary Handman
Director
Media Resources Center
Moffitt Library
UC Berkeley

510-643-8566
ghandman@library.berkeley.edu
http://www.lib.berkeley.edu/MRC

"I have always preferred the reflection of life to life itself."
--Francois Truffaut

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 Wed Aug 12 08:19:04 2009

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