We are  upgrading the synagogue library software to a web-based 
system with an on-line catalog.  We are in the process of deciding 
whether we should restrict access to the catalog to synagogue members 
only or to make it available to everyone.

I would be interested in knowing your thoughts about access to 
on-line synagogue catalogs. Are there any down-sides, potential 
problems, or other issues (including hacking) that we should consider 
if we were to allow full access to everyone.  If we made the catalog 
available to members only, that would be an added "perk" that 
congregants would have.  However, it would be good library public 
relations to make our historic collection available to the larger 
community.  The question of security (will we get the books back from 
a non-member?) is a problem that some people are concerned about.

How have you dealt with these issues and what decisions have you made 
about your on-line catalogs?   We'd appreciate any help/insight you can offer.

Thanks in advance,

Paula Fine
Cong. Emanu-El B'ne Jeshurun
Milwaukee, WI





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