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LIS-E-RESOURCES  July 2010

LIS-E-RESOURCES July 2010

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Subject:

Use of free e-books in libraries survey

From:

Kate Price <[log in to unmask]>

Reply-To:

An informal open list set up by UKSG - Connecting the Information Community <[log in to unmask]>

Date:

Sun, 18 Jul 2010 12:54:47 +0100

Content-Type:

text/plain

Parts/Attachments:

Parts/Attachments

text/plain (145 lines)

Hello,

I am researching material for a section on the usefulness and management of free e-books, for a forthcoming CILIP publication "E-books in Libraries: A practical guide".

If you are currently using free e-books in a library setting, I would be very grateful if you could fill in the short survey following this e-mail, which should take 20 minutes at the most.

The survey is designed so that you don't need to go away and find out specific details before completion - it is more about perceptions and approaches than accurate statistics. If you are not sure of any of the answers, please just skip to the next question.

By free e-books, I mean the complete full text online of resources such as textbooks, monographs, research reports and government reports that require no payment at all, and are freely accessible for the forseeable future (i.e. not just for a short period as a trial or sample), and in full (i.e. not just one or two chapters of a book containing twelve chapters).

There is an option at the end to participate in a 15 minute telephone interview, so if you are willing to be phoned for further discussion, please do fill in your contact details.

Please send the completed e-mail directly to back to me at [log in to unmask]<mailto:[log in to unmask]> , and I will summarise for the list.
All information will be anonymised for publication, unless you give express permission otherwise.

Deadline for completion: Friday 30th July.

Many thanks for your help,
Kate Price
Head of E-Strategy & Resources
Library & Learning Support Services
University of Surrey, Guildford, Surrey
[log in to unmask]<mailto:[log in to unmask]>
Direct phone: 01483 682876



Free E-books in Libraries Survey

In all cases, you can select more than one option.

***First section - Background***
1. What type of Library do you work in?
(e.g. Government, University, School, Research Council, Further Education College...)

2. Approximately how much catalogued PRINT book stock does you library have?
(e.g. approx 100,000 items)

3. How many Library staff do you have altogether (including professionally qualified and non-professional staff)
(e.g. 5 individuals OR 40.5 Full time equivalent staff).

4. Approximately what budget do you have available for purchasing book stock?
(e.g. 50,000 for all book stock including e-books OR 40,000 for print book stock and 10,000 for e-book stock)

5. How would you characterise your library users?
a) Most of them are able to come to the Library in person on a regular basis
b) Most of them are based elsewhere but can come to the library occasionally
c) Most of them are based elsewhere and are never able to come to the library in person
d) Other - please explain briefly

6. How technically competent are your library users?
a) Very - they are able to find and use electronic information without much help
b) Mixed - some are able to use electronic information independently, but others need help
c) Not very - most need some assistance with finding and using electronic information
d) Other - please explain briefly


***Second Section - E-books***

7. Approximately how many e-books (free and paid-for) do you make available to your library users?
(e.g. approx. 5,000)

8. Approximately how many FREE e-books do you make avaiable to your library users?
(e.g. approx. 500)

9. Why do you direct your users to free e-books?
a) Because the material is good quality, and users are unlikely to find it themselves
b) Because our budget is small and free e-books are a useful way to extend access to resources without spending more money
c) Because free e-books are less problematic to login to and print/download from etc.
d) Because we have a specific policy of promoting freely accessible, high quality information
e) Because the free resources available are more relevant to our particular users than the paid-for ones that are available.
f) Other - please explain briefly

10. How do you direct your users to free e-books?
a) Through the Library Catalogue
b) Through the library web pages
c) Through leaflets, posters and other publicity material
d) Through word of mouth (e.g. one-to-one advice, induction sessions, Faculty meetings, informal contact)
e) Other - please explain briefly

11. If you catalogue free e-books, how do you achieve this?
a) We catalogue free e-books individually to the same standard as print books
b) We catalogue free e-books at collection level (e.g. linking to the homepage of an organisation that provides many free e-books)
c) We catalogue free e-books individually to a basic level (e.g. using templates)
d) We download free e-book records from other sources (e.g. WorldCat)
e) Other - please explain briefly

12. How do you select which free e-books to direct your users towards?
a) Through specific recommendations - e.g. from academic staff or other library users
b) Through actively seeking out good quality free e-resources, e.g. by contacting organisations / searching websites etc.
c) Through coming across useful information in e-mail lists, professional publications etc.
d) Through hearing about free e-books at conferences, seminars etc.
e) Other - please explain briefly

13. How do you ensure that links to free e-books are maintained?
a) Rely on library users reporting broken links.
b) Use an automated link checker that is run on a regular basis.
c) Manually check all the links (e.g. on an annual basis).
c) Other - please explain briefly

14. Do you have a weeding / de-selection policy for free e-books?
a) No - the question has not yet arisen
b) No - we have made a decision not to weed free e-books
b) Yes - our weeding / de-selection policy is as follows.... (please explain briefly).

15. Overall, how much staff time do you think it takes to manage free e-books (selection, cataloguing, maintenance, troubleshooting, weeding)?
a) Less than paid-for resources (print/e-book)
b) The same as paid-for resources (print/e-book)
c) More than paid-for resources (print/e-book)

16. What are your worries about free e-books?
a) That at some point in the future they will cease to be free.
b) That they are primarily an advertising gimmick.
c) That there is no infrastructure to support ongoing access and preservation, so the content may be lost to future generations.
d) That they may be prone to disappear without warning.
e) Other - please explain briefly

***Third section: In conclusion****

17. Do you have any comments to make about the usefulness and management of free e-books in a library setting?
Your comments will be anonymous, unless you specifically give permission to have your quotes attributed.

18. What sources of free e-books would you recommend to library colleagues? Please give URLs if possible.

19. Would you be willing to participate in a 15 minute telephone conversation, to discuss your responses to this survey? Please note that even if you do say yes, you may not necessarily be contacted, and if I do wish to contact you by phone I will e-mail first to arrange a convenient time, and to confirm your contact details.


Many thanks for giving up your precious time for this survey, the results of which will be directly useful to library colleagues.
Please send your responses to the e-mail address below, rather than back to the list.

Best wishes,
Kate
[log in to unmask]<mailto:[log in to unmask]>









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