The Alert Collector: Collection Development in an Era of "Fake News:

Mark Shores


This Alert Collector column for RUSQ’s special issue “Trusted Information in an Age of Uncertainty” is not going to be the usual list of great resources to add to your collection. In fact, despite a broadly distributed call for Alert Collector columns for this special issue, no one took me up. I do not blame them! At the suggestion of the editor of RUSQ, I decided to put together a “think” piece on fake news as it relates to collection development. I am not going to propose any radical or innovative approaches to how librarians develop collections for the purpose of battling fake news. I do not feel such an approach is possible. What I do want to do in this column is reaffirm and highlight things that I know many of my colleagues are already doing and have been trying to do since the dawn of collection building in libraries.—Editor

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Wayne Finley, Beth McGowan, Joanna Kluever, “Fake News: An Opportunity for Real Librarianship,” ILA Reporter 35, no. 3 (June 2017): 8–11,

Rick Anderson, “Fake News and Alternative Facts: Five Challenges for Academic Libraries,” Insights: The UKSG Journal 30, no. 2 (July 2017): 4–9.

Gary Martin, “Meaning and Origin of the Expression: You Can Lead a Horse to Water, but You Can’t Make It Drink,” The Phrase Finder, accessed October 17, 2017,

Dan Jones, “Seeing Reason,” New Scientist 232, no. 3102 (December 3, 2016): 29–32.



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