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The Wonderful World of Interlibrary Loan


Over at Boing Boing, Cory Doctorow sings the praises of interlibrary loan:

Denizens of BushcraftUK discuss Willie Sundqvist’s “Swedish Carving Techniques,” a rare tome that goes for £100 and more. Then one of them has the bright idea of asking his local library to get one through Interlibrary Loan, the original P2P file-sharing network, and shortly thereafter, he gets a copy to read, courtesy of the Seattle Public Library. Go libraries!

What is he talking about? In the United States, interlibrary loan is a program in which different library systems across the country loan items to each other upon patron request, usually at no additional charge.

Sometimes my patrons’ eyes bug out when I introduce them about this service–which is a wonderful experience. I’ve used it myself to order everything from dissertations to obscure pocket manga.

Practically speaking, if you want almost any book and are willing to wait a few weeks, you can get it. And that’s totally neatorama.

Link | Photo by Nancy Sims

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December 16th, 2012

Stranger to the World


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