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    Location: Aberystwyth, Wales, United Kingdom

    I am the owner and managing director of Information Automation Limited (IAL), a company that specialises in research, consultancy and training for the information profession. We are particularly interested in all forms of electronic information resources (e-journals, e-books, etc) and I teach a course in electronic publishing at the Department of Information Studies in Aberystwyth. Drilling down still further(!), my interests centre on the quality and evaluation of electronic information, and in the thinking that underpins activities in library and information science.
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    Sunday, June 10, 2007

    Reader's Digest: indigestable reading for libraries

    I think that I last read a copy of Reader's Digest as a child - probably when I was given a subscription in an attempt to widen my reading - or in a dentist's waiting room of about the same period... but it has suddenly popped up again, and with a most unexpected message:

    On a page headed 'That's Outrageous', the article shouts: Our Libraries: Where Has All the Cash Gone? and has a very-RD graphic (still recognisable after all these years!) of book pages transmogrifying into bank notes that fly away, before a tempter to get you reading the meat of the article:
    "We’re paying more than ever before—£50 a year for every family in Britain—and yet the service is dwindling"
    Of course, you've guessed it - Tim Coates is responsible for spreading his message still wider. The statistics he quotes are very worrying, and the idea that we are all paying more for less is clearly designed to stimulate action - at least amonst the Reader's Digest readers in my dentist's waiting room.

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