In lieu of an abstract, here is a brief excerpt of the content:

  • Briefly Noted
  • Fred Rowland
Fool’s Gold: Why the Internet Is No Substitute for a LibraryMark A. Herring. Jefferson, NC: McFarland & Company, 2007. 191p. $45 (ISBN 978-0-7864-3082-6)

Based on the subtitle of this work, one expects a much closer analysis of the central role that libraries need to continue to play in our Internet-crazed world. Instead, in successive chapters, the author writes almost solely of the many problems the Internet poses for serious research, the conservation of our intellectual heritage, and social cohesion. The serious challenges of broken links, disappearing footnotes, a flood of mis-and disinformation, copyright violations, mass digitization, pornography, Google madness, and a rising tide of illiteracy are all scrutinized by the author’s sharp pen. However, too many pages are spent illustrating the problems, while there is a frustrating lack of discussion of the very difficult choices libraries face in negotiating this new environment and any potential solutions to the myriad problems raised. As a primer on the less than ideal world of the Internet, this work should be useful for a popular audience that might not be familiar with many of these issues. For librarians looking for a way forward, there is much less offered here. (Fred Rowland, Temple University, [End Page 346]



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