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New feature: Magazines are now Requestable!

Mon, 03/07/2011 - 4:02pm by eli

Good News, Everyone! AADL's mammoth collection of over 25,000 magazine issues is now requestable! That means you can search our collection of over 600 magazine titles and request a specific issue to be held for pickup for you at any of our locations, just like any other library item. The only difference is that after you choose your pickup location, you'll be asked which issue of the magazine you'd like to request.

The newest issue of each magazine is not requestable to keep them on the shelf while they're new, but as soon as the next issue arrives, the previous issue becomes requestable too. Maybe Giant Robot is what you're looking for, or the new Home Power Magazine, or maybe you're seeking one of our 100+ issues of National Geographic. No matter what you're looking for, getting your hands on magazine issues at your library just got a lot easier. Try it out and let us know what you think, either by commenting on this post or contacting us!


If you click "return to search," you get a fatal error and have to rekey the URL. If you look at your account listing of requests, there is no way to identify which issue you have requested. Therefore, if you requested 3 and only 2 were successful, you have no idea which one failed.

Thanks for the feedback! We're currently fixing the buttons on the request confirmation page, and will investigate if we can get individual issue information listed on the My Account page.


We've made some updates and fixed both of the issues you mentioned. If you look at your checkouts and requests they will now display the name and issue for any magazines you have checked out or requested. We hope you enjoy the selection!

I think this new feature will be a great burden on the staff. They are already burdened with all the holds on books/movies! I don't feel it is necessary for magazines.

Thanks for your concern, Ruth, but we don't mind. It's our job to get stuff for our patrons, not our burden! Feel free not to request magazines if you're concerned about it, but this was a clear opportunity to improve the usability and accessibility of the magazine collection. Thanks again for your comment, and thanks for using your library!


I am very excited about this idea, thanks so much! I use the hold option all the time for books which I love, and I appreciate all the work of the library staff, I always tell the main stacker person my thanks. My favorite magazine is Piecework, a needlework magazine. When I search for Piecework, it doesn't give each issue, just a one generic issue with 20-something copies available. Will it be set up so I can choose from several Piecework issues? Thanks again for this great addition! I'm a huge fan of the AADL. Thank you.

Thanks for using your library, jgetty! You're on the right track with piecework; just click "request an issue" and choose your pickup location; you'll then be prompted to choose a specific issue. It's a little different from books, but we wanted to keep all the issues under one record. Let us know if that doesn't make sense, and thanks very much for your feedback!


I probably will use this new feature, but I'm a little wary of promoting circulation of the periodicals. I've noticed that they get pretty beaten up over time and it's also pretty common to find that the article I was interested in has been torn out by some other patron. Isn't the idea to have these available to everyone? Wouldn't that be better served by not allowing their circulation so they remain readable for all of the patrons? (I'm assuming that people aren't tearing out pages in the library....) Or is the truth that most of the periodicals that AADL buys are disposable and it is perfectly fine if they disintegrate after a few uses?

ssands, I am sorry that you have had disappointing experiences with the magazine collection. If you come across issues that are beaten up or you see that someone has removed an article, please let staff know. We have different options to provide you the access you need to the material - now including placing a hold on another copy if we subscribe to that magazine at more than one location!

You're right: The idea IS to provide access to the magazines and to do so, we have been circulating magazines (but not the current issues) for years, since not everyone has the ability/time to read in the library. I appreciate your suggestion of having the magazine collection be more of a reference collection, but that would make the collection inaccessible to many patrons. Magazines are not kept forever, due in part to space constraints, and we want as many people to use the magazines as possible while they are in the collection. We believe that this new service will level the playing field for magazine lovers, and since this is a new service, we will evaluate it and adjust as necessary. Do give it a try & please continue to let us know what you think.


How lovely! Thanks!

I love having magazines that circulate. My children have been known to read issues in bed. I wouldn't be in favor of "library use only" issues, even if that would nicely preserve them.

One question -- I tried a search on youth magazines, and I'm getting Bicycling, Real Simple, Better Investing, and others that don't strike me as children's periodicals, as well as a few that are (such as Babybug, Boys' Life). Is there a glitch here? It also seems to be freezing when I go to the second, third, or other pages.*?search_format=s&age=youth

Hi, Willow, thanks for bringing this issue to our attention. We found the problem and a search for youth magazines now works as you'd expect. We're still tracking down the freeze, is that still happening for you? Do you get any errors? And does reducing your number of results per page make any difference? Thanks again for your feedback!



The "youth" selection looks more appropriate but still includes Barron's (The Dow Jones Business And Financial Weekly), the Ann Arbor Observer, The New York Times Book Review, NY Times Magazine, and Chicago Tribune Magazine.

I am looking with 20 results per page. It didn't seem to freeze this time but is fairly slow.

This is a great addition to the library services being offered and I've already requested some magazines to read. Thanks for adding this feature! Keep up the good work aadl!!!


Great feature! I request books and other materials all the time, this is a great addition. Thanks AADL!

I am new to the Ann Arbor West Branch, and I love it here :) I am very excited about this option to request magazines - can you tell me how long I should wait after making the request online, and going in to pick them up? Thanks!

This is a great new (well, new to me!) service. Magazines have gotten pricey and it's great to be able to try them out, and let my kids try them, before committing to a subscription.





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