Friday, May 22, 2009

Disappearing Magazines

Once again, where have I been when news breaks? Not paying attention, apparently, or not reading it on the web. I read an article in Public Libraries magazine of March/April 2009 about certain magazines going entirely digital, but the fact didn't sink in until I went to check-in the mail the other day, and I saw that U.S. News and World Report is only coming monthly now. I went back to the article to reconfirm what is actually happening and I sought out more information on the web (of course).

An article from The Washington Post says U.S. News and World Report will print a monthly edition each month but this will be entirely devoted to consumer guides such as its annual rankings of colleges and hospitals and that it will contain no news! So if you want to read the news from this magazine at the library, you'll have to get on the computer and go to their website and have a librarian log-in for you.

Other magazines going the same route in the very near future are PC, Jet, Christian Monitor and Ebony; more will follow within the next 10 years. Libraries will have to make the decision whether to keep their magazine rooms or devote them to other uses. In the future, to read a magazine at the library might require a computer or an e-reader. Other problems will involve providing access to those magazines through the library website, available seating and computers for viewing, steady use of all computers, and tech-friendly librarians to help.

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