The University of Kansas (KU) libraries has faced increased requests for streaming video in the past five years. While we have provided access to many databases of films, feature films remained a problem. To write a collection development policy, the library undertook three investigations to ensure the outcome reflected the needs of the university.
Film titles included in Swank 300 and Criterion-on-Demand were checked against the CanIStream. it? website to check for availability through streaming, rental or purchase services. Student library users were surveyed to determine if they had streaming subscriptions and, if so, which ones. KU librarians also examined academic library collection development polices to understand how others have addressed this issue.
More than half of the feature films provided by the two vendors are available through subscriptions, renting or purchasing methods. A majority of students subscribe to one or more of these services. Many academic libraries are deciding not to provide streaming feature films.
There are no previous studies on students’ subscriptions to streaming services linked to availability of feature films offered from commercial vendors to libraries.
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