May 20, 2022

New Article Looks at Digital Culture and Ebooks In and Around Montreal’s McGill University

The article is titled “Transcending Text” and was published a few days ago (October 28, 2014) by the McGill Tribune.

Along with library officials the article includes comments from two Montreal authors and a McGill professor.

From the Article (about 2000 words):

According to Associate Dean of McGill Library’s Digital Initiatives Jenn Riley, the university currently spends 80 per cent of its $16 million collections budget on electronic resources.

“We have e-book subscriptions to all major university presses for the most part, [and] we don’t get those in print any more,” Riley said. “Almost all academic libraries have made this shift [….] We are very committed to this shift because we get more bang for our buck. A title that would cost 100 or 200 dollars per book is 30 or 15 [dollars] per book in the electronic version.”

To illustrate this point, Joseph Hafner, Associate Dean of Collection Services, explained that the library previously subscribed to 18,000 print journals. Now, McGill provides access to 90,000 e-journals.


According to Riley, the nature of librarians’ roles at McGill will have to shift from service providers to research partners.

“The idea is that we can help people understand methodologies for doing their research [with software that] can help them find the data, [and] deposit the data once they’re done,” she said. “So we’re a part of every step along the way rather than just providing a catalogue.”

Hat Tip/Thanks: McGill University Library, ||| @McGillLib

About Gary Price

Gary Price ( is a librarian, writer, consultant, and frequent conference speaker based in the Washington D.C. metro area. Before launching INFOdocket, Price and Shirl Kennedy were the founders and senior editors at ResourceShelf and DocuTicker for 10 years. From 2006-2009 he was Director of Online Information Services at, and is currently a contributing editor at Search Engine Land.