The Small Law Library Catalog, Revisited

Small law libraries can use cloud-based catalogs to expose their collection more effectively to lawyers and others and reduce the friction in finding items. This post, an update from a 2010 look at small library catalog options, takes in the changed ILS landscape.

Untether the Legal Information

Better access to legal information requires that law libraries – or whoever wants to be in charge of information access – think about how to place legal research tools and services as close to the point of need as possible. I describe a “law library bookmobile” as a way of talking about how we might need a physical vehicle to put the formats, and the law librarian, near the people who need them.

Bypass the Law Librarian

Law librarians are operating on a legal information value chain. Research lawyers are further up that chain, not because they are better, but because they can move the lawyer closer to the end result. While the type of law library and the law librarian may be limiting factors, there may be opportunities for law libraries to move themselves up that value chain.

Who are Your Links Working For?

Link shortening happens on many social media platforms and in mobile apps. It is easy to create shortened links – even with the demise of goo.gl – but if you’re doing it for your law library, consider how you can manage the long term access both to the document and the analytics surrounding the link.

The Invisible World of RSS

Another RSS reader bites the dust and there is that sense that RSS is on the way out. But that belies the healthy number of RSS tools available to law librarians, and the opportunities they provide to perform the librarian roles of selecting and providing access to legal information.