College & Research Libraries News

Fast Facts

→ Journalists choose Internet for research

A recent survey of 232 journalists by the public relations firm Burson-Marsteller found that 37% choose the Internet as their “first source of information”; 27% choose a library or archives. Fifty-seven percent trust the Internet the “same as traditional media"; 3% trust the Internet “more than traditional media.”

Genia Jones, "Just the Online Facts, Ma'am," The Standard, Dec. 19, 2000. article/display/0,1151,20942,00.html. Jan. 2, 2001

→ Information foraging

Research conducted by Peter Pirolli and Stuart Card at Xerox’s Palo Alto Research Center suggests that foraging theories can be applied to information gathering. Web surfers “rely on prehistoric instincts to maximize their yield when they hunt and gather morsels of information.”

Rachel Chalmers, "Surf Like a Bushman," New Scientist, Nov. 11, 2000. Jan. 2, 2001

→ Usage of Web proxy servers

Eighty-four percent of 74 libraries responding to a survey last month use proxy Web servers to enable remote access to vendor-provided resources. Web proxies are also used for providing access to IP-restricted campus resources; filtering Internet access; denying access to Web-based e-mail, gaming, and chat sites; conseiving bandwidth; and creating statistical reports.

Peter Murray, "Library Proxy Use Survey Results." Jan. 2,2001

→ OCLC stats

The 37,297 OCLC participating libraries cataloged 55.2 million items on the online system between July 1999 and June 2000 and completed 8.6 million interlibrary loan transactions.

"OCLC Issues 1999/2000 Annual Report," OCLC Online Computer Library Center, Jan. 2, 2001

→ More reference librarians

Market Data Retrieval reports a 56 percent increase in the number of reference specialists employed by public libraries from 2,634 in 1995 to 4,100 in 2000. Larry Keller, "Not an Endangered Career: Looking It Up,", Nov. 28, 2000. Jan. 2, 2001

→ UNESCO Archives Portal

The UNESCO Archives Portal launched in September 2000 now links to 2,560 Web sites in the following categories: Architectural (48), Audiovisual (84), Business and Labor (65), Diplomatic (14), Family (4), International Organizations (19), Literature and Art (102), Military (23), Municipal (670), Museums (59), National (71), Parliaments and Political Parties (47), Religious Communities (120), State and Regional (265), Universities and Research Institutions (383), and Other (26).

UNESCO Archives Portal, Jan. 2, 2001

Ann Viles is coordinator of reference and instruction at Appalachian State University in Boone, North Carolina, e-mail:

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