Re: barcodes/videos

Jim Scholtz (
Tue, 30 Sep 1997 10:31:28 -0600 (MDT)

Hi Lisbeth,

Here are some comments mixed with real-life experiences. In my
experience, it has been beneficial to place the barcode on the actual
video rather than the box for several reasons: it makes staff have to open
the case to actually see the video and hopefully, see that the correct
tape (or any tape) is in the box; also staff can see if the video needds
to be rewound or is damaged in any way and advert a situation which might
complicate matters for the patron later. Patrons dealing with
self-checkout may not be as discerning in checking out titles so wrong
titles may get checked out occassionally. Also, with patrons opening up
video boxes to checkout, they may drop them on the floor, break them, mix
them up in the boxes, etc. so that makes a case for making things simpler
and having the barcode on the box - you'd just have to rebarcode all of
your collection?!! Actually, the one answer that makes the most sense is
this - there are full-sleeve video boxes available with a UPC cutout on
the top end of the box. A standard barcode 3/4" x 2" shows perfectly in
the cutout; the patron only needs to place the video box on end and
checkout on the 3M system. Staff will need to be trained to open boxes
and actually do a brief video inspection upon return, before reshelving,
but patrons wouldn't have to handle the videos themselves. (OK, so
sometimes patrons try to put the videos in the case the wrong way, and
then the barcode won't show and the item won't checkout - so nothing's
perfect...) This method is costly and labor intensive, because one would
need to buy new cases, put new barcodes on the items and recat items.
Just some suggestions. JCS.

On Tue, 30 Sep 1997, Lisbeth S. Goldberg wrote:

> We are currently reassessing "where to place barcodes"--on the box or on
> the video itself for circulation. Here are some issues. We have a 3M
> system and are considering self-checkout. There is interest in being
> consistent with the placement of barcodes on books, for ease of processing
> purposes. Currently, the barcode is placed on the title label of the
> video itself. Anyone have any experience with or comments on any of
> the above?
> Lisbeth S. Goldberg
> Audiovisual Librarian at Arlington County Library, VA
> (703)358-6339