On Sun, Aug 11, 2013 at 9:54 AM, Heather Rayl <[log in to unmask]> wrote:

> I have to say that I loathe LibGuides. My library makes extensive use of
> them, too. Need a web solution? The first thing out of someone's mouth is
> "Let's put it in a LibGuide!"
> Shudder
> This fall, I'll be moving our main site over to Drupal, and I'm hoping that
> eventually I can convince people to re-invent their LibGuides there. I can
> use the "saving money" card, and the "content silos are bad" card and
> *maybe* I will be successful.
> Anyone fought this particular battle before?
> ~heather
> I'm fighting that battle right now. We have an excellent CMS into which I
have set up all our database URLs, descriptions, etc.Anytime we need to
refer to a database on a page, we use one of those entries. That database
just changed platforms? No problem. I change the URL in one place and
everything automatically updates (hooray CMSs!).

All of our subject guides ( are in
the CMS using the exact same database entries. I converted from our
failing, home-grown system into the CMS and then gave training on how to
maintain from there (remove an entry, add an entry, create a parallel
course guide)--using the same skills as maintaining any other web page that
librarian is responsible for. But apparently that's too hard.

So we have a trial of LibGuides. NO ONE here has created a guide from
scratch yet,  but they all say this is going to be easy. No one will admit
that someone will have to recreate all those database entries (literally
hundreds) and then maintain those entries. When presented with this,
several librarians said--oh that won't be necessary, we'll just create
individual entries as needed on individual guides. WHAT?!

If implemented, we'll have hundreds and hundreds of entries, any of which
could be out of date and nonfunctional, with no easy way to find and fix,
other than waiting for patrons to complain that the link doesn't work. Ugh.
All for several thousand dollar a year (as opposed for free in the CMS).

And yes, those librarians' favorite example libguides have a dozen tabs
with hundreds of links on each tab. Overwhelm the patron with links--who
cares! Just let me recreate the Yahoo Directory I so miss with every
possible resource I can find online. Half those links don't work next
semester? Doesn't matter, as no one will ever maintain that page again (and
no patron will use it, since they will just Google these resources anyway).

Robert Sebek
Webmaster, Virginia Tech Libraries