Three Area Libraries Collaborate to Present Online Newspaper Database

Yesterday’s news has never been more interesting. That was the consensus among Richmond Memorial Library in Batavia, Woodward Memorial Library in Le Roy, and the Alfred C. O’Connell Library at Genesee Community College. The three libraries teamed together to purchase a subscription to a new database that allows access to the full-text of Batavia’s The Daily News.

The database, which covers all issues of the Daily News from 2000 to the present, is updated daily and provides complete full-text content of local and regional news including community events, schools, politics, sports, cultural events, local companies, and people in the community. Wedding announcements and obituaries are included.
The articles are searchable by keyword, date, or can be browsed by issue. The online version of The Daily News can be used as an index to the newspaper from 2000 on. The Richmond Library has all back issues of the newspaper on microfilm since 1878.

“This database is important because it really focuses on the local community,” said Diana Wyrwa, Director of the Richmond Memorial Library. “Local newspapers are much more difficult to get online. This database is a real-time snapshot of local events, and the articles are primarily written by local reporters.”

The opportunity to purchase a subscription to the database came nearly two years ago, when Genesee Community College’s representative from NewsBank, inc., mentioned that the company was producing a new database from The Daily News. NewsBank, inc. provides comprehensive, Web-based research products for many organizations, including public libraries, colleges and universities, and schools.

Judy Sikora, Library Director, and Nina Warren, Systems & Electronic Services Librarian, at Genesee Community College, decided to collaborate with the local public libraries to implement this database in the region. NewsBank, inc. allowed the three libraries to form a small consortium and worked out a pricing level so that the organizations could pool resources and provide the database to all their patrons.

“We’ve had a lot of interest in the database already,” said Sue Border, Director of the Woodward Memorial Library. “One patron came in looking for all the editorials related to a certain topic, and we were able to find them all very quickly and easily.”

The database is available to all users in each of the three libraries, as well as on their websites. For remote use from home, public library patrons simply need a valid library card, while Genesee Community College students, faculty and staff can use their network user account to access the database.

“It’s a great tool for students who want to research topics and events in Genesee County that may not be covered in any other online source,” said Warren. “And everyone who is interested in local history and genealogy will find it useful.”

Sikora added, “We could not have afforded the database individually, but collaborating with each other worked out well for everyone. We all value the local paper as an important resource, and this tool is a wonderful way to take full advantage of it.”

For more information about The Daily News database at Genesee Community College contact Nina Warren at (585) 343-0055 x6256 or visit the College’s web site: www.genesee.edu/Library

At the Richmond Memorial Library, contact Diana Wyrwa at (585) 343-9550 or visit web site www.batavialibrary.org/

At the Woodward Memorial Library, contact Sue Border (585)768-8300 or visit web site at www.woodwardmemoriallibrary.org
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