Deadline Due Dilligence
Continuing Education Course

Dr. Roberta Brody, Graduate School Library Information Studies at Queens College
Toby Lyles, Raleigh News & Observer
Greg Notess, Search Engine Showdown
Marion Paynter, Charlotte Observer

Sunday, June 6, 2004
8:00 am - 12 pm
Special Libraries Association 2004 Annual Conference News Division

Newsrooms are now requiring detailed background on businesses and individuals, enabling librarians to provide a terrific value to news organizations.

During a four-hour continuing education course at the SLA conference in Nashville, a news librarian, a library-school professor and a Web expert provided a detailed look at practices and sites researchers can use to provide that information on deadline.

"We don't know what we know," said Marion Paynter, library director at the Charlotte Observer, who spent several months interviewing several dozen librarians, private investigators and vendors to "compile our community's collective wisdom." Her 23-page report is to be made available at the division's Web site.

Among the lessons researchers have learned:

Roberta Brody, associate professor in the school of library and information studies at Queens College, City University of New York, said researchers should ask: Who needs to know? Who wants to know? What associations, books or consultants do they use? Find the smallest unit that would have the information you need.

Look at search engines such as Google in terms of their underlying databases, said Greg R. Notess, a reference librarian and associate professor at Montana State University in Bozeman. Because of load-balancing among servers, the same search may not get the same result twice, so reloading can help, Notess said. Use sponsored links for information, knowing where you got it.

-- Tom Pellegrene Jr.
The Journal Gazette
Fort Wayne, Ind.

Special Libraries Association 2004 Annual Conference
SLA News Division Home

Last Updated: 07/21/04