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« Quality tip: Dealing with the lonely chatter | Main | Quality Tip: Just send me something vs. BI »

January 11, 2013


I don't entirely agree with bullet point number 4, that is don't give the student an article if it isn't available through their library. What the example showed was a complete lack of explanation to the student about what was and what "was not" available at their library. It seems to me that with a full explanation of how they should be relying on ILL or other services , because this is not available directly at their home library, one would be on safe ground in sending the article to the student. Essentially, the chat librarian acted as a concierge ILL service without any explanation of the system of available resources.

We've built a chat system that has a mixed message  --- bouncing back and forth between a seamless and time-zone-free access to resources on one hand and a "sorry you can't get there from here" on the other.

The fact that it could possibly violate a database license seems a bit overly legal. Basically we act as a proxy ILL. But we are obligated to explain this aspect of the knowledge ecology, otherwise it all starts to come from the cloud with no attachment to provenance.

Although it's always better to teach a patron how to access information, not providing a patron with information because it's unavailable to them seems a ridiculous at best.

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