05 December 2007

FAQ: How much is available, and when?

You might be wondering just how big a collection the Consortium is going to be sharing, and when people can access them.

At this point, we should have between 400 and 500 titles for the Consortium to share, and all of those titles will be available all the time -- except when they are checked out by one of our patrons. That might seem like not enough titles to share amongst our (as of today) 41 member libraries, but when New Hampshire started their program, the consortium had about 1,000 titles -- perhaps double ours, with double the population, and it was very successful, with wait times for popular titles with holds averaging three days or less and most titles having no wait time.

Naturally, the more libraries that participate and the more pledge money the GMLC receives, the more content we can purchase.

What about those popular titles? Naturally, one of the tasks the Selection Committee has is to purchase titles according to demand. It is most likely that our popular titles will have more than one copy in the collection. These guidelines will be set out in the Selection Policy, which must be approved by the GMLC members.

As for access, once patrons sign up, they will be able to access the collection at any time, since they will just have to go online. Schools may choose to limit their access as they see fit -- many school librarians have asked about this topic, and those libraries could certainly have the librarian or their teaching staff serve as the access point to the collection, rather than having students create accounts.

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