The purpose of this study is to explore the traditional reading habits of library users which were ignored when digital libraries were constructed in developing countries. It provides advice on how to solve the problem of the reading habits of library users in developing countries and how rapidly needs of readers with libraries are adopting alternatives to locally held print sources in order to meet the traditional reading habits.
Through reading and studying the related reference materials and literatures by searching in CNKI and checking web sites, the paper provides general tactics on how to develop digital libraries in developing countries. The paper first analyzes the definition and features of the digital library, and is followed by an introduction to libraries in developing countries, confronted with the problems caused by traditional reading habits. Before discussing digital resources and their applications, a brief introduction is presented to the development of digital libraries in mainland China.
The functions of digital libraries in developing countries are seriously diminished due to traditional reading habits. Libraries in developing countries should offer comprehensive services and take due account of the needs of the traditional readers when developing digital libraries. For many years, documents that the library has collected have mainly been various kinds of printed materials. Printed documents are an advantage of the library for traditional users because digital documents cannot totally replace them. It is also unnecessary to digitize all the collected documents of the traditional library. As digital libraries are developed, traditional libraries must continue to provide an excellent service in meeting the needs of users with traditional reading habits.
This paper provides some observations and insights into the design and development of digital libraries in developing countries. All of the above attracts the attention of the digital library in developing countries to the traditional users. To try to get the most appropriate architectural space, facilities and management, efficient service, comfortable environment and modern equipment to enable the libraries to offer the fastest information service for all the readers, the traditional users or modern users.
Songhui, Z. (2008), "The influence of traditional reading habits on the construction of digital libraries in developing countries", The Electronic Library, Vol. 26 No. 4, pp. 520-529. https://doi.org/10.1108/02640470810893765Download as .RIS
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