What were the reasons behind the recently implemented decision to require us to login to search the library catalog?
Thanks for getting in touch with this question. Others may be wondering the same thing. But first, allow me to clear up a few things about the library catalog.
Here at the Temple University Libraries we refer to the catalog as Diamond. You can call it whatever you like as long as you know how to get to it and how to use it (but if you don’t – just ask any of our friendly staff for assistance). You should know that there has never been a requirement to login to Diamond, nor is there currently a requirement to login to Diamond. We make our library catalog freely accessible to the global Internet community. Try it from off campus sometime – you won’t be asked to login just to search our catalog. If you are – let us know immediately because something isn’t working right.
That leads me to ask what has prompted your question. Not knowing exactly I’ll address two possibilities. First, you might be asking about the new procedure in Paley (actually in place since September 2010) where students must login to get access to the desktop on any personal computer in the library. We made this change for several reasons. First, we are now more compatible with the policy used in the TECH Center – students always had to login there – and now we have the same policy. Second, we moved to requiring a login at Paley because we found that many non-Temple guests were getting on our computers and then students were having a hard time finding a computer they could use. We wanted to come up with a system to better serve students and our guests. With the login requirement, guests can no longer login – and it is also really important for students to logoff when they are done with computers so no one can get on one using their account. Now guests use dedicated computers in the Tuttleman area of the Library.
BTW, if you are in Paley Library, keep in mind that we have several “search the catalog only” computers – no terminal login ever needed – you’ll find them at the “Ask Here” desk, by the circulation desk and in the Media Services area.
The other possibility is that you are trying to access a subscription-based library database (such as those from Ebscohost, JStor, or many others) when you are off campus, and are being asked to login with your account. That has always been the case as we require Temple community members to authenticate themselves in order to access one of our licensed databases from off-campus. On campus, once you login to the desktop and open a browser, you should never be asked to login to the database – it knows you are from Temple when you are on campus. Again, if you are on campus and are being asked for an account, please report that to us right away.
So that summarizes why we added the login requirement for the computers. However, just to reiterate, there is absolutely no login required to access the library catalog. If you are just using the catalog and being asked to login, please report this to us as it is an error that we would need to correct.