Is online always better than print?

We had a meeting today at MPOW to discuss switching from the print and card version of Choice magazine. Happily, it was my director who posed the question that is the title of this post – “Is online always better than print?”

The answer to that, I think, is no. Which, as a “nexgen” librarian, makes me feel like a fuddy-duddy or something. But I think, in this case, that it’s not necessarily better. I think that the Choice cards are a good thing, and less forgettable than accessing an electronic resource. One of my coworkers commented that she would likely vote for the electronic/online version of things rather than print because it’s easier to access and more available. Which is true, but I am afraid that our professors who are supposed to be using this resource won’t actually use it because you must have a computer with internet access. Print cards you can look over in bed, on the commute home, over lunch or dinner, basically anywhere you are. Unless you have a laptop and wireless internet everywhere you go, the same cannot be said for online resources.

I’m not trying to be all old-fashioned and “print only”…I’m just trying to be a small voice of reason and make sure that we aren’t just jumping on the all online bandwagon simply because if it’s online it must be better.


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