Phone books printed

By Ellen Skelly

The NIU phone directories will be distributed during the first part of November.

Although classes have been in session since August 28, the books are not delivered until November because of the Privacy Act, an effort to maintain accuracy and the time it takes to print the books, said Dale Pollett, NIU’s communications systems supervisor.

Through the Privacy Act, students can go to the NIU Office of Records and Registraton and have their names and other information excluded from the directories. The time limit for this request is 15 school days after the start of the fall semester.

Pollett said keeping accurate, up-to-date information is a year-long process, and Records and Registration needs until the middle of September to compile information for the school year.

Complete information for NIU phone books arrived at University Directories, publisher of the books, on Oct 5.

Mark Hillsgrove, University Directories publications coordinator, said the contract for printing the books gives University Directories 30 days to have the books delivered to NIU, meaning they will arrive by Nov. 3

Once they have arrived at NIU, delivery of phone books takes about a week, Pollett said. He said the books must be sorted, which takes up to a full day, labeled, and distributed. One book is distrubuted to each campus phone, said Pollett.

This year 10,000 NIU phone books were ordered and will be sent out to campus addresses, including the residence halls, faculty and staff. Some books are sold at the Holmes Student Center Bookstore.

Pollett said “delivery would be horrendous” if books were sent to off campus addresses.

NIU phone directories are not payed for by students through fees or tuition. The publisher of the books, located in North Carolina, pays for the printing and typsetting costs of the books in return for selling the advertisements in the book. NIU also gets a percentage of the advertising revenue.

Hillsgrove said phone books are published when his company receives information on computer tapes for two of the major sections of the books.

NIU sends information for student and faculty listings, and for the first section, which includes phone instructions and usage tips as well as general university informaton.

DeKalb city directories are distributed to campus addresses early in the semester to help diffuse the traffic of calls to NIU information for phone numbers.