Sunday, April 7, 2019

Library Work Then and Now

My generation initiated online searching in the 1970's.  I worked for the Globe and Mail when the online database was just getting started.

I wondered what jobs like this looked like today.  I immediately found one:

"The New York Times News Research Desk has an opening for a researcher who is adept in social media, public records, archival databases, and the art of information gathering.
The role of a news researcher has evolved greatly from the days when most reference information was contained in paper clippings, almanacs and encyclopedias. Today, skilled researchers are required to track facts through a forest of datasets, posts and tweets. They must be adept at deciphering public records, using social media to identify a subject, and finding the seemingly unfindable. A good one has a bloodhound's tenacity, a detective's deductive power, and a philosopher's passion for the truth.

Ideal candidates for this full-time position will be confident in their abilities and cool under deadline pressure. They will have a master’s degree, preferably in library science, or convincing equivalent experience. They will have worked at a major metropolitan daily newspaper or media organization for at least three years. Knowledge of public records — in particular, how to background a subject using databases such as Nexis, Accurint, TLO and Spokeo — is a must. Candidates should also be familiar with the NYT's own online archives, including TimesPast, ProQuest, and Parch; the news aggregators Nexis, Factiva, Newslibrary, and MasterFILE; and specialized collections including PACER, Leadership Directories, JSTOR, TV Eyes, Dialog, Spokeo, Ancestry, Guidestar, and Political MoneyLine."

It is impressive how much more information there is.  For example, Accurint is an online resource for investigating the identification of people, assets, etc.  Spokeo is a people search database.  Both of these show the significant change in how many more people are finable compared to 40 years ago.  While we had online sources, we also paged through books back then to research a topic. I wonder if there even are any reference books today.

The Betterphoto contest last month awarded a Finalist to one of my images.  Here it is.



No comments:

Post a Comment