Skip to Main Site Navigation Skip to Content Skip to Footer
Back To Top

New York Times joins library's collection of free news sources

Published on November 15, 2023

New York Times joins library's collection of free news sources

library lead

The New York Times is the latest complimentary subscription available to Eastern students, faculty and staff, joining the J. Eugene Smith Library’s collection of other free online news sources and scholarly databases.

“Our national newspapers represent high-quality journalism,” said Angela Walker, reference/instruction librarian. “Most reputable newspapers are now online, but not all online news comes from reputable sources.”

With the internet, students have at their disposal infinite amounts of information, however, according to Walker, the quality of the information is just as imperative as the quantity, emphasizing that students must be able to identify credible sources when conducting research. Such factors of credibility, according to Waker, include “the editorial process, the expertise of the author and the reason for publication.”

With the rise of digital resources, traditional, physical forms of media are becoming less prevalent. “Library research happens mostly online with electronic databases," said Walker. "Librarians create their own websites and online tutorials." As a result, libraries are able to "provide information that cannot be accessed on the web.”

Through the library’s collection of databases, students are more easily able to get their news from accredited sources rather than their social media feeds. According to Walker, social media is an often unreliable source that floods user’s perception, thus clouding scholarly ethics and playing into confirmation bias — the tendency for people to favor information that aligns with their preexisting beliefs.

“Relying on social media for delivery of ‘news’ is not a good idea because of filter bubbles and fake news content,” said Walker. “Choosing your news sources is always better than relying on delivered ‘news’ via social media.”

Walker said, “Bias of newspapers lies mostly in the choice of what to publish or what to leave out, or what perspective is taken on an issue. This does not (necessarily) make the information untrue,” she said. “Newspapers do not only report on events and politics, they also deliver news in important fields for our society, including science, economy, culture ... written for a general audience. This means that it is easier to read than a peer-reviewed research article that uses its own language in the field.”

Newspaper databases:

Written by Elisabeth Craig

Categories: Library