Re: Multimedia CD-ROMs

Kristine Brancolini, 812/855-3710 (
Tue, 24 Oct 95 11:49:15 EWT

From: PO2::"" 24-OCT-1995 09:28:28.33
To: Multiple recipients of list <>
Subj: Re: Multimedia CD-ROMs

Philip: This library has collection development and selection
policies for all formats collected. Each format has unique
capabilities, a system of distribution, a network of equipment
support. We also have more than twenty fund managers who need to
coordinate purchases and communicate with one another about parts
of the collection. When we just jump in and start buying
something new, we make mistakes. We would probably make mistakes
anyway, but we hope to minimize them, especially with expensive
materials! Just within the category of multimedia CD-ROMs
(defined as the combination of one or more of the following
elements: text, graphics, photographs, audio, video), there are
many options. Who selects them? Using what selection criteria
(the criteria used for books or videos or audios do not apply)?
Who pays for them? What kind of equipment support do we offer?
What kind of human technical support do we offer? Where are they
shelved? Do they circulate? For how long and to whom? Do we buy
from reviews? Do we buy on approval? Do we buy them from a separate
fund or from existing subject-based and format funds? These are not
trivial questions around here and the answers are not clear-cut. We
have been buying these products for about three years using grant money,
but it's time to define what we are buying.

Sorry, Philip, but I teach collection development in the School of
Library and Information Science here. :-) I think this is necessary.
I don't think using some general statement about meeting student
and faculty information needs is enough.

Kristine Brancolini
Indiana University Libraries

An interesting question, Kris. An even more interesting question
would be why multimedia CD-ROM requires a separate, or even addendum
collection development policy? I would like to suggest that it does not;
that curriculum support, reference and/or research needs, copyright
adherence, licensing and pricing requirements all full under existing
rubrics in most policies already. As for "application" titles (such as
WordPerfect or Quatro-Pro, for example) multi-user licensing fees make
most libraries (but not labs) blanch at the prospect of acquisition.
Now we may be completely in the dark (and you or others can take
full advantage of this list to enlighten us) but we have been acquiring
multimedia CD-ROM products for the past three years without seeing the
need for another policy statement.

Philip Fryer Phone...: (410)-532-8787 ext.118
Loyola/Notre Dame Library Fax.....: (410)-532-6130
200 Winston Avenue Internet: PDF@LOYOLA.EDU
Baltimore, Maryland 21212