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Date due options

Library Systems Newsletter [June 1998]

With all of the high tech library systems now in use, the patron still needs to know when his or her library material is due back in the library. We have been asked to describe options for marking the date due on books and other library materials now that the traditional book pocket is becoming a thing of the past in many libraries. Where book pockets are still in use, the traditional 5 x 3 date due slip can continue to be used. Its only drawback is that it requires opening the book. Libraries are increasingly placing the barcode labels on the outsides of books so that they don't have to be opened for scanning. When the barcode labels are affixed on the top front of each book, the labels can be used with a self-charging device-and for inventorying using a portable scanner.

The following are the most widely used alternatives to the pocketed 5 x 3 date due slip:

Date due strip-Strips measuring 1.5 x 3.5 inches each are pressed onto the outside front covers of books. When a strip is full of date stamps, the tab can be pulled to remove the strip, and a new one applied. The tops of the strips can be imprinted to identify the library, and/or they can be color coded to identify the library department. The labels cost under $40 per 10,000. The major drawback is the build-up of adhesive residue on popular books, therefore, requiring occasional use of an adhesive remover.

Inserted date due strip-A receipt printer is used to print a date due slip for each book-with the author and title of the book given as well as the date due. A receipt printer costs $250 to $400, but it can also be used to print a receipt for a returned book when a patron requests one. The date due slips cost less than $25 per 10,000. The major drawback appears to be the potential separation of the slip from the matching book, thus confusing the patron with regard to its due date. Some libraries have also reported that patrons have attempted to remove valuable books without checking them out by inserting a date due slip from another book which had been properly checked out. This has also been a potential problem with theft detection systems that use a special date due card to shield the target.

Date due labeler-A label gun is used to apply a permanent label with the pull of a trigger. The labeler, which costs under $190, holds a roll of 1,000 labels. The labels cost under $40 per 10,000. If there is a full date due label on the book, a new one is applied over it. The major drawback is a build-up of date due labels on a popular book. This may require scraping labels off from time-to-time.

Library supply houses, which sell all of the aforementioned products, report that the traditional date due slip continues to sell well, but that the date due strip is catching up very quickly.

View Citation
Publication Year:1998
Type of Material:Article
Language English
Published in: Library Systems Newsletter
Publication Info:Volume 18 Number 06
Issue:June 1998
Publisher:American Library Association
Place of Publication:Chicago, IL
Notes:Howard S. White, Editor-in-Chief; Richard W. Boss, Contributing Editor
Subject: Circulation Systems
Record Number:5740
Last Update:2024-04-11 00:35:27
Date Created:0000-00-00 00:00:00