Editorial August 2014


Photograph of Mark Cummings

In my last letter I spoke of an expanded mission for Choice and pointed out that we provide a number of services in addition to publication of a journal devoted to reviews of new scholarly titles.  Those of you who are reading this letter clearly know of the work we do with reviews, but how many of you are aware of the other publications and services we provide to the academic library community?  Resources for College Libraries?  Our burgeoning webinar program?  The Internet Resources newsletter?  I suspect you are in the minority if you are.

Traditionally, Choice magazine has been a way to connect libraries with publishers and other content providers.  Using Choice reviews, librarians can quickly determine which recently published monographs are appropriate for their collections.  Today, Choice is no longer simply a magazine; it is a publishing unit dedicated to bringing people together around information resources. “Choice: The Connector” is shorthand for our contemporary mission: connecting all three major elements of the library ecosystem—libraries, content providers, and library patrons—with the tools they need to find, evaluate, and use information thoughtfully.

Communicating this expanded mission is the primary reason why we launched a new marketing website this past June.  Choice360.org is designed to showcase what is in essence a rebranding of this venerable institution.  As its name implies, the website serves as a common platform for learning about all Choice tools and services, not just the magazine.  And it serves as a single point of entry for a variety of essential functions.  On its pages one can subscribe to our magazine, register for our webinars and/or free newsletters, view archived webinar presentations, send us your suggestions, learn about special offers, sign up for a free trial subscription, even volunteer to be a beta tester for new Choice products.  Nor is the site of use only to librarians: publishers interested in advertising with us, scholars looking to become reviewers, or organizations wishing to sponsor and create an ACRL-Choice webinar will all find ways to do so at Choice360.org.

The website also serves as a conduit into our social media environment.  In recent months we have moved to tie our Facebook page more closely to Choice editorial content and, in our new “Tell Choice” section, to engage our friends—all 6,700 of you—in conversations around topics of interest to the library and publishing communities.  Choice360 makes it easy to access that content, with links to Facebook and other social media platforms on virtually every page.  In the near future, as we begin to add new editorial content to Choice, including guest editorials and articles on special collections, we will be posting some of that content on Choice360 and using it to drive discussions on our Facebook page. 

Communication with our subscribers and friends has never been more important than it is today.  Indeed, by some measures, it is the single most important element in our future growth.  We hope that you will visit Choice360.org and participate in this exciting new phase of our development.—MC