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Press: “On Robert Frost, fences, and electrons: Why we need two separate digital library systems for academics and the rest of America—and content exchanges and other neighborliness”

Posted by DPLA on April 4, 2011 in Press.

“Might the right set of fences be one way to keep the Harvard-hosted Digital Public Library of America from unwittingly weakening the franchise and branding of America’s public libraries in their online incarnation—while we still promoted neighborliness between and among institutions? That’s the solution I’m mulling over right now. Perhaps a National Digital Library of America could serve the public in general and a Scholarly Digital Library of America could enrich the campus community. Both ‘civilians’ and academics could use each other’s library systems for free, at least when copyright and licensing agreement allowed; and the two could pick up the other system’s exportable content and share a common infrastructure and standards. Searching for books simultaneously in both systems would be Kindle-seamless. But fences between the pair could exist on most acquisitions issues and practices, interface priorities, most staffing matters, and in various other respects. Hence, the purchases of monographs on Henry James wouldn’t be pitted so directly against, for example, shorter wait times for Stephen King novels, assuming that patron wait times were necessary.”

From David Rothman’s post on LibraryCity.org, “On Robert Frost, fences, and electrons: Why we need two separate digital library systems for academics and the rest of America…”