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Monday, April 30, 2007


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Doesn't each post count as a discrete issue that remains distinct? Admittedly, each issue is only a post long, but that shouldn't necessarily make a different. Posts are not overlaid and changed as with a normal website, although I will admit comments add some degree of complication to this.


I would agree with Tom that they act more like serials -- Wiki's on the other hand fit more of the integrated resources idea because they are or can be continually updated. But I have to ask, why on earth would you catalog a blog (or a wiki) in the first place? Would library patrons really look in the catalog for a blog? And then there is the whole idea of tagging vs. subject headings...

Jonathan Rochkind

I don't know if "blog" is a useful category here. What do you mean by "blog" exactly?

Don't answer that. Instead, answer this question:
Are _some_ electronic resources serials? Including some which have no physically printed counterparts? If so, what makes them serials, instead of integrating resources? How do you tell the difference between a website that's a serial and a website that's an integrating resource?

If this can be answered in a clear way, then the answer to that can be applied to blogs. And I would guess that some electronic resources (ie, 'websites') called 'blog' by some people will probably meet your definition of serial. Others may or may not.

If I put a volume and issue number on each of my blog posts, does that make it a serial? If the editors of Librarians Arguing Quarterly decide to make every article in every issue of their journal available online for free, and choose to use the free service provided by blogspot.com to do so -- would that somehow make it no longer a serial because of the software they chose to use to publish it? That obviously wouldn't make any sense.

Christine Schwartz

Thanks for these comments. In my haste to get this post out, I didn't think this through very well. Mea culpa. The more I think about it--weblog posts really do remain discrete issues or parts. They have permalinks, a unique URL assigned to each post. Also, while not common, I've cataloged a serial that had chronology but no numbering designation; and blog posts do have chronology. So, maybe blogs are a type of electronic serial, albeit, an ephemeral one in some cases.


I'm glad I read the comments :) I was going to say that I think that blogs can very well be considered serials. I also wanted to point out this resource: ISSN for Weblogs - http://fawny.org/issn/?issn.


Also, there is the IBSN (not a typo): http://ibsn.org/. I'm not sure how serious an enterprise this is, especially given the way you can make up a number, which just has to be 10 digits and have three hyphens somewhere in it, e.g. 7576-02-07-04 (mine, based on significant years). It's easy to register.

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