AALL Spectrum

AALL Spectrum / January/February 2018 / Volume 22, Number 3

AALL Spectrum / Published by American Association of Law Libraries

Issue link: http://epubs.aallnet.org/i/915318

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Page 52 of 59

JANUARY/FEBRUARY 2018 | AALL SPECTRUM 51 From Paper to ProQuest VENDOR VOICE I n 1970, publishing professional James B. Adler created the Congressional Information Service (CIS), which for years issued the CIS/Index, a popular legislative activity record that researchers could access on microche at libraries. Over the years, the company was sold twice—most recently to information pro- vider ProQuest in 2010. Shortly aer joining ProQuest, the index's production team intro- duced a new product, Legislative Insight, which oers reports, committee prints, and other items to help law school librarians, stu- dents, and other users more easily work with compiled legislation histories. ProQuest has, in the years since, debuted other new products, which were modeled aer its searchable legislative database to aid in lawmaking process investigation. We recently spoke with ProQuest product man- ager leader Catherine Johnson about the index's early days, Legislative Insight's launch, and the way changes in information manage- ment could potentially shape the future of legislative research. Since adding a legislative resource eight years ago, the company has provided new, innovative ways to research public law history and access legal information. What market need did the early versions of the CIS/Index address? My sense of the company's purpose was a desire to ensure that government content was preserved, so they wanted to have high-quality microche that would last for 100 years, and add high-quality abstracting and indexing so people could nd what they were looking for. In many ways, that purpose still exists. How has the production process changed since the index was launched? I started as an abstractor. Some of the same people are still here from 1980. It was a really dierent time; Esthy Adler [James Adler's wife] used to go down to Capitol Hill to acquire paper volumes. Of course, when the internet came along, that changed a lot of things, such as the actual process, but it also changed the way we abstract and index. When we were abstracting for microche users, I always had the sense that if we failed to capture the main theme it would mean no BUSINESS EDGE

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