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Great Scouts! CyberGuides for Subject Searching on the Web

Book by Leading News Researchers Is a Cure for “Internet Overload”

Medford, NJ, October 1999 — Information Today, Inc. has announced the publication of Great Scouts! CyberGuides for Subject Searching on the Web by Nora Paul and Margot Williams. A Web page offering links to almost 550 Internet sites went online simultaneously.

Great Scouts! profiles the best of the Internet’s “scout sites”—Web sites that provide access to the most important online sources of information on specific subjects. Scout sites act as Web directories, offering researchers an alternative to search engines (with their frustrating propensity for irrelevant “hits”) by providing organized collections of links to the most appropriate and useful Web sites for a given topic.

“Yahoo! was the genesis, the beginning of a noble attempt to organize the unruly Web,” according to authors Paul and Williams, referring to the best-known Web directory. “Years later, Yahoo! is still the beginning point for many Web users, but as the scope and range and volume of material on every imaginable subject grows and grows on the Web, it is simply impossible for any one guide to look at carefully, organize logically, and make accessible the best resources on all these topics. That’s why we wrote this book.”

Great Scouts!  profiles the premier scout sites for over 25 topic areas, including:
Health & Medicine Business Social Issues
Education Travel History
Politics Science Religion
Environment Literature Entertainment
Art & Architecture Food Computers/Internet
Law Sports Money & Investment

Scout site profiles include site name, URL, and e-mail address. Information on why a site was chosen, when it was created, topics covered, content, and currency are also included. Additionally, scout site profiles include a description of the primary audience, the number of sites it links to, how linked sites are selected, how it’s supported, how to use/search it, notes on interface design, special features, and more.

Links to Web Scouts
A Web page offering links to almost 550 Internet sites went online simultaneously with the publication of Great Scouts! Providing links to scout sites profiled in the book, “The Great Scouts! Web Page” (!) is periodically updated by the authors, so that defunct sites can be removed and newly discovered resources that meet their criteria for inclusion can be added.

About the Authors
Nora Paul, faculty member and Library Director of the Poynter Institute for Media Studies in St. Petersburg, Florida, is responsible for holding seminars on news research and news library management, computer-assisted reporting, and leadership in new media newsrooms. Previously, she spent 12 years at The Miami Herald as Library Directory and later was Editor of Information Services. She has been a consultant on research services and information management for the Associated Press, the San Antonio Express-News, the Time Warner Research Department, and the San Jose Mercury News. She is a frequent contributor to Searcher magazine, and is the author of Computer-Assisted Research: A Guide to Tapping Online Information, now in its 4th edition.

Margot Williams is the Research Editor and Internet Trainer for The Washington Post’s newsroom. She was a member of the investigative team that won the 1999 Pulitzer Prize for Public Service. Previously, she worked as a research librarian at Time Warner, The Poughkeepsie Journal, and The Washington Post, and wrote a monthly column about Internet use for The Post’s consumer technology section. In 1996 and 1998, as the recipient of the Special Libraries Association/Freedom Forum fellowship, she traveled to Hong Kong and Manila to train journalists in the use of the Internet. In 1997, she was an adjunct professor at the George Washington University School of Media and Public Affairs, teaching investigative reporting with the Internet. She is a frequent speaker on research and Internet topics at news industry associations.

The Evloving Virtual Library II Great Scouts! CyberGuides for Subject Searching on the Web (320 pp/softbound/$24.95/ISBN 0-910965-27-7) is published by Information Today, Inc., and is distributed to the book trade by Independent Publishers Group (IPG). It is available in bookstores or It is available by calling Information Today, Inc. at 
800-300-9868 (outside U.S. call 609-654-6266), or online from the Information Today Store.

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