This letter was sent to us by Lydia Sampson, Head of Technical Services at Brennan Library, in response to Alex Grant’s article “Reel Talk: Brennan needs an updated movie collection.”
I would like to thank Alex Grant for the opinion piece on the Brennan Library’s DVD collection featured in November’s “1851 Chronicle.” We librarians appreciate student feedback and suggestions. I would like to clarify a few points to let the Lasell community know more about our robust movie collection and how to access it.
We aim to purchase new and popular films and TV series so that students have entertainment options in addition to our academic resources. The library does in fact have all seasons of “Breaking Bad,” as well as “Dexter,” and “Family Guy” (mentioned in Grant’s article). We also have hits like “Project Runway,” blockbusters, horror movies, romantic comedies, and old classics. Whether you’re in the mood for “The Godfather,” “The Hangover,” or “Casablanca,” the library can suit your needs!
Over the past few years we have been replacing VHS tapes with DVDs, and at this point the VHS tapes we own serve as backup copies or are titles unavailable on DVD. Eventually we may add the Blu Ray format, but right now the demand for this does not justify the expense. Our usage shows that buying Blu Rays would do a disservice to the bulk of our users who cannot play them, so for now we focus on DVDs.
Most importantly, we want the Lasell community to know how to borrow DVDs from us. Grant makes a valid point; sometimes when browsing the collection you may not find what you want, when someone else already has it. I recommend using our online catalog to request DVDs (or Blu Rays) and to build up a “queue.” We can request items from more than 40 libraries in the Minuteman Network, but Lasell members always have first dibs on anything Lasell owns!
We do appreciate the call for increasing our budget and would welcome the chance to purchase even more of a selection and perhaps Blu Ray copies. True, this might not rank as a top budget priority for the college, but we will do what we can! In closing I wish to make one correction: when referring to checking out the library’s DVDs, please use the term “borrowing,” not “renting.” We lend everything free of charge, unlike our competitors at Netflix, Hulu Plus, and Amazon Streaming.