In the changing scenerio, libraries and libraraians will have to play a crucial role in handling conventional and electronic resources. Thus the era of electronic publishing has begun affecting producers, distributors, library and Information centres and user community.
Kist (1989) defined electronic publishing as "the application by publishers of a computer aided process, by which they find, capture, shape, store, and update information content in order to disseminate it to a chosen audience" (p. 600 ). Kist pointed out that this definition makes no distinction between the manufacturing process and the disseminating process. Less than a decade ago the term electronic publishing identified an activity that is now referred to as desktop publishing, in which information is stored and formatted electronically, but manufactured and distributed by traditional paper-based methods. Kist claimed that the term electronic publishing (which can include any single aspect digital storage, manufacture, or transmission of a publication) is now so broad that it is usually meaningless. Brownrigg and Lynch (1985) took a very different approach to defining an electronic publication. Their insightful article began by making a clear distinction between electronic production and distribution of information. The authors distinguished between what they called Newtonian (Gutenberg/paper-based) publishing and quantum-mechanical (electronically transmitted) publishing. They concluded that much of what is currently labeled electronic publishing is actually traditional Gutenberg-style publishing carried out by modern methods. Their thesis was that electronic publishing is a delivery medium: that publication is an action and process rather than an artifact. This idea seems to have some merit. One of the most complete definitions of electronic publishing appears in a popular electronic encyclopedia (Grolier Electronic Publishing, 1995). This wholly electronic publication defines electronic publishing this way "Sometimes used to describe the application of computers to traditional print publishing--from word processing to computerized order processing--the term electronic publishing refers more precisely to the storage and retrieval of information through electronic communications media. It can employ a variety of formats and technologies, some already in widespread use by businesses and general consumers, and others still being developed. Electronic publishing technologies can be classified into two general categories: those in which information is stored in a centralized computer source and delivered to the user by a telecommunications system; and those in which the data is digitally stored on a disk or other physically deliverable medium. The former category, including online data base services and videotext, represents the most active area in electronic publishing today".
Electronic publishing brings us a host of changes. It increases the speed of communicating, disseminating and digesting knowledge. It provides new means of searching for, finding and analyzing specific information. It reduces the need for additional shelf capacities in libraries. Yes, electronic