Users, end-users, and end-user searchers of online information: A historical overview

Miriam Farber, Snunith Shoham

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review

8 Scopus citations


Discusses the changing relationships between information professionals - vendors, database producers, searchers - and end-users, during the last three decades. Most of the time, the industry was quite vague as to who exactly the end-users were, and consequently several different definitions were used to describe the target audience of online information systems. The needs and capabilities of the end-user were measured conveniently through the reactions of libraries' and information centres' personnel who were not always the most suitable sources. The concept of the "end-user" is examined from the beginning of the online industry in the 1970s through the menu driven systems of the 1980s and the role of the compact disk in the late 1980s and early 1990s.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)92-100
Number of pages9
JournalOnline Information Review
Issue number2
StatePublished - 2002


  • Computing
  • Databases
  • Information industry
  • Online retrieval


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