Did you fill out an online survey about the library’s digital branch (www.dbrl.org) or participate in a focus group? If so, we thank you for providing us with some really valuable feedback we will use as we continue into the next phase of our website redesign. Many of you voiced similar concerns or questions, so we wanted to take the time to share some of what we learned and respond to some of your comments. (Note that the redesign process is still in the early stages – look for a new and improved dbrl.org in 2015.)
Less is more.
Many of you shared a real fondness for the resources available at dbrl.org, but you let us know that its text-heavy nature and busyness make it look cluttered and difficult to navigate.
No love for multiple log-ins.
I wish that we could tell you that we are developing a magic box where you can enter a single user name and password and have access to all of the third-party services we make available to you through our website, from the online catalog and interlibrary loan service to Zinio (downloadable magazines) and OverDrive (downloadable eBooks and audiobooks). The issue is that these tools and resources all come from different vendors, and they all work in different ways. Some of them require our users to create separate accounts to download their flashy magazines, and others need us to make sure that your library card number is in our database of active cardholders. For the most part, our vendors’ services don’t play nicely or neatly with each other. We hear (and share) your frustration, and we’ll continue to advocate on your behalf for better solutions. For now, if we want to be able to offer you eBooks and digital magazines (and we really want you to have access to downloadable materials), we have to settle for less than perfect in terms of their set-up and function. We do know that we can do a better job of creating clear FAQ pages for these services, and we will be working on that. Thanks for your support and patience.
Lose the library-ese.
There are some words we library folk love – reference, database, subject guide – but that mean little to those outside of the profession. One of our goals for the redesign will be to use everyday language to help you find the information you want and tools you need.
It’s not too late to share your feedback. Feel free to send your thoughts to firstname.lastname@example.org or post a comment here. Thank you! We look forward to making the digital branch an even more fun, interesting and useful place to visit.