Response to Meredith Kahn’s Discussion


After listening to Meredith Kahn’s talk about library resources and organization, I felt like I understood the role of the library much better, as well as some issues involving scholarly publication. I never really thought about the library as a career tract before, and what Meredith does for the university is very important.

I thought that it was interesting that U of M has its own publishing services, and that we have the ability to save our honors thesis in Deep Blue, something I look forward to completing late in my college career. I will also definitely be looking out for the machine that makes books in the library. The whole concept of what a book is seems to be changing, due to shifts in publishing practices, especially though Amazon publishing services. The ability to transfer information on the internet is so common in today’s world, that I had almost forgotten about the traditional, paper book format. I would appreciate, however, if more textbooks were available as ebooks.

I never thought about categorizing books in the way Meredith showed us: textbook, trade, scholarly, indie, and self publishing. For most of the class we discussed the scholarly side of publishing however. Property issues have caused much strife in the scholarly publishing field. How can research be readily available to all, yet provide funds for the publishers? Journal articles like Physics and Chemistry tend to be the most expensive, while Music and History articles are less expensive, yet have experienced more rapid increase in price.

I have experienced a lot of frustration when dealing with journal articles in the past, because often only the abstract is available for free. Even though it would be nice if all of the journal articles were available free of charge, that system cannot function indefinitely. It would be nice, however, if scholarly articles were more accessible to the lay person.

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