I know many of you over the years, including myself, have used a website called Iconn.org
It was set up by the Connecticut State Library and allowed you to access FOR FREE, editions of the New York Times, LA Times, Washington Post, Hartford Courant, Wall Street Journal and many magazines.
All you needed to do was type in your Library card #.
I just logged in to ICONN this morning and was troubled to see the following message:
a result of insufficient funds to cover iCONN’s ongoing costs, as well as current obligations, we are forced to suspend access to the following databases effective September 1, 2009:
CINAHL Full Text*
And, in the absence of additional funding, we will have to suspend access to the following resources effective October 1, 2009:
Newspapers, including the Historical Hartford Courant
*These resources are licensed exclusively to academic libraries
We hope to be able to retain access to HeritageQuest, one of our most heavily used databases, beyond October 1, but that will depend on our budget situation at that time.
As soon as the state has a final budget in place, access to these databases will be restored, as funds allow.
All other databases not enumerated above, as well as the reQuest Statewide Library Catalog and Downloadable Audiobooks, will be retained through June 30, 2010 (budget permitting).
We can hope that funding for this project is restored, but we must also remember that these resources were not FREE to the State in the first place. They were paying hefty license fees to aquire the licenses for this information and simply providing it to Connecticut residents as a public service. Maybe the old media is not dead after all?