May 24, 2022

Journal Article: “Library-Authored Web Content and the Need for Content Strategy”

The following article was recently published by Information Technology and Libraries (ITAL).


Library-Authored Web Content and the Need for Content Strategy


Courtney McDonald
University of Colorado Boulder

Heidi Burkhardt
University of Michigan


Information Technology and Libraries (ITAL)
Vol 38 No 3 (2019)
DOI: 10.6017/ital.v38i3.11015


Increasingly sophisticated content management systems (CMS) allow librarians to publish content via the web and within the private domain of institutional learning management systems. “Libraries as publishers” may bring to mind roles in scholarly communication and open scholarship, but the authors argue that libraries’ self-publishing dates to the first “pathfinder” handout and continues today via commonly used, feature-rich applications such as WordPress, Drupal, LibGuides, and Canvas. Although this technology can reduce costly development overhead, it also poses significant challenges. These tools can inadvertently be used to create more noise than signal, potentially alienating the very audiences we hope to reach. No CMS can, by itself, address the fact that authoring, editing, and publishing quality content is both a situated expertise and a significant, ongoing demand on staff time. This article will review library use of CMS applications, outline challenges inherent in their use, and discuss the advantages of embracing content strategy.

Direct to Full Text Article
14 pages; PDF.

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.