Following the publication of the piece titled “Opinion: EMU should provide digital newspaper subscriptions to students,” this summer, Suzanne Gray of Halle Library reached out to provide more insight on news sources available to students. Her comment on the online article was as follows:
Thank you for covering this Heather! Student access to quality news is a very important topic.
I do wish you had considered connecting with a member of the library faculty at the Halle Library to investigate what we make available to the campus community. The library subscribes to a number of publications through databases that feature reputable news sources, including all of those you cite in this piece. A guide to major news sources can be found here: http://guides.emich.edu/news
If you prefer reading the print version, the New York Times along with the Detroit Free Press and the Detroit news are available on the second floor of the library for your use.
Whenever you are accessing information online and are asked to subscribe or pay a fee, please check with the Halle Library first to see what we have available. The library subscribes to a large array of databases, and unless you access these through the library website, you won't know that you can actually get what you need without paying for your own subscription. We can also obtain items from other libraries without charge to you.
I have several points to make regarding the summer article as well.
An important part of making such a service available as news sources, whether online or print, is advertising their availability. While I am more than willing to do so via writing this follow-up, and while in hindsight I should have consulted the library staff about the services available, it shouldn’t take intensive investigation or a journalistic follow-up to inform students of the tools available to them.
In other words, I wish it were broader public knowledge that these resources are available. On some level, students are tasked with being personally resourceful - but the exhaustive list of news sources listed on the website should be more zealously advertised and should perhaps be mentioned in flyers, students’ my.emich page, etc., so students can more readily find these resources.
Additionally, there are still newsstands on multiple floors in Pray-Harrold which advertise both print and online New York Times content as available. These can be traced back to when the service was funded by EMU Student Government several years ago. These advertisements are misleading and the signs should be replaced with something current - like the logo of The Eastern Echo - so the newsstand isn’t a misleading and hollow reminder of the halcyon days of Student Government-funded news subscriptions.