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Virtual reference in an Australian academic library was examined using qualitative and quantitative analyses of email and chat transcripts. Forty-seven chat transcripts and a matched sample of email were analysed to examine questions of usage, question type, the reference interview and communication processes involved with these interactions. Results show that the usage of synchronous virtual reference in this sample is very low with a call rate of approximately one call for every four hours ofdoi:10.1080/00048623.2004.10755262 fatcat:nntwbfcvrrefpcgj3gk5yj3kge