The Abbey Newsletter

Volume 17, Number 5
Oct 1993

Spread the Word - Prevent Information Deprivation:

Give the Abbey Newsletter to Some Deserving Library or Archives in a Foreign Country

In recent years, we have been giving one-year subscriptions to our preservation contacts at libraries or archives in foreign countries where currency problems keep them from buying non-domestic products. The Editor has met these people, some of whom head national libraries or archives, at international conventions, where participants often complain of being starved for information about preservation.

Recently, we wrote to all of them, saying we would be willing to continue their complimentary subscription for another year if they wanted it, provided they were willing to share the issues with others. (Since we only send one free subscription per country, we want to be sure it gets passed around.) A number of these readers wrote back to assure us that the subscription was being put to good use, so we will carry them at least one more year.

Sometimes we might decide to carry an overseas subscriber who has not written such a letter, if we have reason to believe the subscription is used and needed. But there is a limit to the number of free subscriptions we can carry, since we also send them to a growing number of retirees who have made notable contributions to the field, and to people like administrators and lawmakers who have suddenly been thrust into a leadership position on some preservation matter, and need to get a picture of the field quickly.

Because preservation awareness is growing all over the world, the demand for information like that provided in the Abbey Newsletter is growing. This newsletter is often recommended by speakers at international conferences. But preservation and conservation people in this country are also eager to widen their contacts. They want to communicate with people in other cultures who are facing the same preservation problems and having similar experiences.

The Abbey Publications office can provide a way for readers to "adopt" one or more of these subscribers in other countries by paying for their subscriptions. A list of candidates for "adoption" will be sent on request, with addresses; when a choice has been made, the office will write a letter to the adopted library or archive, introducing the donor (unless they ask to remain anonymous). Who knows? Some pen pal correspondence may develop as a result.

This service will be an extension of an arrangement that we have used since the 1970s, the traditional gift subscription. Now that we have a Filemaker Pro database for subscriptions, it is easy keep track of all these arrangements.

We welcome suggestions of other adoptees to add to our list. Send their name and address to the Abbey office, with a check to Abbey Publications for the subscription, and indicate whether we should tell them that you have set up their subscription for the next year (or two or three), or that an anonymous donor has set it up. If you cannot cover the cost this year, but want to put them on the list and invite others to adopt them, send the name anyhow, and we will see what happens.

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