As usual, The Shifted Librarian just Gets It. Here’s part of her expansion on my idea:
Or what about the library paying for a subscription to an online serial that makes it available to residents. Theoretically, a user with a valid library barcode would go to the library’s web site, enter the barcode, and be authenticated through to the full version. But what if that journal provided an RSS feed? Abstracts are available to everyone, but if your barcode number is entered in your aggregator, when you click through on a link, you see the full story. Think about what a great service this would be for medical libraries to provide to their physicians!
Or here’s another idea – what about an AP or Reuters made up of bloggers. Newspapers could subscribe to the service and pick up stories, and so could libraries. In a way, the concept isn’t that far removed from NewsIsFree, to which the library would then subscribe.
This last, of course, is why I’m so interested in authenticating aggregators (though I’m pained that Peggy didn’t mention my own Alma Mater, UPI). Where my thoughts differ from NewsIsFree is that I’m talking about actually generating new content — maybe targeted to a narrow audience, but maybe not — instead of repackaging what others have created.