Ask a Librarian policy and chat privacy statement

Ask a Librarian policy

Our Ask a Librarian service provides chat and e-mail-based reference services primarily for ASU students, faculty and staff, in support of teaching and research at Arizona State University.

Questions from local community members not affiliated with the university will be answered as time and resources permit.

We encourage persons outside the above categories to refer to their local public or academic library for assistance should questions NOT apply to ASU Library’s services, special strengths, and/or unique collections.

Some questions may need to be referred to ASU librarians for further assistance.

Questions received through the Ask a Librarian service are normally responded to within twenty-four hours. Questions submitted during evenings, weekends, and holidays may require a longer response time.

Chat privacy statement

ASU Library respects the privacy and confidentiality of its users. Information is collected from users of the Ask a Librarian chat and email service in adherence to ASU Library's Privacy Statement and ASU’s Privacy Statement to help evaluate and improve ASU Library services. The Ask a Librarian chat and email service is hosted by Springshare LLC, a cloud-based library software and services provider, and data is collected in accordance with their privacy policy.

Archived chat and email transcripts are password protected and available to Ask a Librarian staff, technical support staff, and library administration. Chat and email transcripts contain the user name, email address, ASU affiliation, and college as supplied by the user in the original chat or email request form as well as the IP address. 

Beginning May 1, 2019 and henceforth on the first of each month, the user name, email address, and IP address fields are automatically deleted if the chat transcript or email transcript is older than 90 days. The remaining request form fields (ASU affiliation and college), along with the transcript, are retained for a limited period of time.