Saturday, June 06, 2009

ABC News Shuttering In-House Library in Favor of 'Digital Research Facility'

Looking To Donate Print Materials
By Felix Gillette
June 4, 2009 | 2:36 p.m
The New York Observer

Today, yet another bricks-and-mortar media bibliothque fell victim to the digital age.

This afternoon, in an email to his staff, David Westin, the president of ABC News, announced that ABC News will be converting its existing research library on the second floor of its 47th street building into a smaller, more cyber-focused "Digital Research Facility."

"Our extensive, hard copy library filled with periodicals and other materials is no longer necessary in the digital age," wrote Mr. Westin. "The time has come to reshape that library to reflect today's world."

More here

>From A Reader Comment:

If Mr. Gillette would visit the Research Center, he would discover a group of highly trained information specialists who spend the majority of their work hours expertly and cost-efficiently utilizing databases on the web; working iteratively through sources and with reporters and producers all along the story development process, and perhaps occasionally checking a print source along the way as appropriate.

This ABC corporate produced meme that they are acting responsibly to transition into the digital age from an imagined book-filled mausoleum is gross justification for irresponsible cost-cutting. And Mr. Gillette does a great disservice to Observers readers by perpetuating that meme, and not fully reporting the real story.

>From A Reader Comment:

One can hope that the new virtual library at ABC will include access to the Disney Channel so that substitution for the books and journals can at least include some good Mickey Mouse cartoons.

>From A Reader Comment:

Amazing. the abc news library was non-digital, minimal digital, maybe even anti-digital. amazing and extremely unlikely.

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