Scholarly Electronic Publishing Weblog Update (12/5/05)

Posted in Announcements on December 5th, 2005

The latest update of the Scholarly Electronic Publishing Weblog (SEPW) is now available, which provides information about new scholarly literature and resources related to scholarly electronic publishing, such as books, journal articles, magazine articles, newsletters, technical reports, and white papers. Especially interesting are: "Are Authors and Publishers Getting Scroogled?"; "OCA and GLP 1: Ebooks, Etext, Libraries and the Commons"; "OCA and GLP 2: Steps on the Digitization Road"; "Reassessing Prospects for the Open Access Movement"; "Sony BMG: DRM Gone Bad"; "Strengthening the NIH Policy"; and "What I Wish I Had Known."

Dr. Ilene Rockman Has Died

Posted in Obituaries on November 27th, 2005

I’m very sorry to report that Dr. Ilene Rockman has died. She was an enormously gifted individual who made very significant contributions to librarianship. Among her many notable accomplishments was her superb editorship of Reference Services Review for over 20 years. She will be greatly missed.

Her obituary follows.

Dr. Ilene Rockman, Manager of the Information Competence Initiative for the Office of the Chancellor of the 23-campuses of the California State University (CSU) system passed away on November 26, 2005 from non-smoker’s lung cancer. She was 55 years old.

Rockman worked for the CSU for over 30 years as librarian, faculty member, and administrator at Cal Poly, San Luis Obispo and CSU East Bay before moving to the CSU Chancellor’s Office in 2001.

A tireless advocate for integrating information literacy into the higher education curriculum, Rockman was active nationally and locally as a speaker, author, and consultant. She held leadership positions within the American Library Association, the Association of College and Research Libraries (ACRL, and its California chapter), and the Reference and User Services Association.

In 2005 she received the ACRL Instruction Librarian of the Year award, and in 2003 the ACRL Distinguished Education and Behavioral Sciences Librarian award.

She was the editor and contributing author to the best selling book, Integrating Information Literacy into the Higher Education Curriculum (Jossey Bass, 2004), found in libraries around the world.

She served as a consultant to the Educational Testing Service on the development and implementation of a new performance-based test to assess higher education students’ information and communication technology (ICT) literacy skills.

She also served as editor-in-chief of Reference Services Review, and on the editorial boards of American Libraries, Library Administration and Management, The Journal of Academic Librarianship, Reference Quarterly, and Library Hi Tech. In 2005, she received the Leading Editor award from the Emerald Publishing Company of the United Kingdom for her 20 years of editing Reference Services Review.

In addition, she served on the advisory boards of the Friends of the Hayward Public Library, the Literacy Council of the Hayward Public Library, and the Bay Area Libraries and Information Systems (BALIS).

In 2004, California State Senator Liz Figueroa named her "Hayward Woman of the Year."

Contributions may be sent to the Cancer Center at the Stanford Hospitals and Clinics, Women Against Lung Cancer, Friends of the Association of College and Research Libraries, or Friends of the Hayward Public Library.

She is survived by her loving husband Fred Gertler, of Hayward, CA and her brother, Edward Rockman and his family, of Mill Valley, CA.

Scholarly Electronic Publishing Weblog Update (11/21/05)

Posted in Announcements on November 21st, 2005

The latest update of the Scholarly Electronic Publishing Weblog (SEPW) is now available, which provides brief information on 17 new journal issues and other resources. Especially interesting are: The Access Principle: The Case for Open Access to Research and Scholarship, Acquiring Copyright Permission to Digitize and Provide Open Access to Books, Digital Libraries and the Challenges of Digital Humanities, "ETD Release Policies in American ARL Institutions: A Preliminary Study," and "Open Access Citation Information," and "Requirements for Digital Preservation Systems: A Bottom-Up Approach."

The Sony BMG Rootkit Fiasco

Posted in Copyright, Digital Culture, Digital Rights Management, Emerging Technologies on November 14th, 2005

When Mark Russinovich posted "Sony, Rootkits and Digital Rights Management Gone Too Far," he helped trigged a firestorm of subsequent criticism about Sony BMG Music Entertainment’s use of the First4Internet’s digital rights protection software on some of its music CDs. It was bad enough that one of the planet’s largest entertainment companies was perceived as hacking users’ computers with "rootkits" in the name of copy protection, but then the EFF posted an analysis of the license agreement associated with the CDs (see "Now the Legalese Rootkit: Sony-BMG’s EULA"). Things got worse when real hackers started exploiting the DRM software (see "First Trojan Using Sony DRM Spotted"). Then the question posed by the EFF’s "Are You Infected by Sony-BMG’s Rootkit?" posting became a bit more urgent. And the lawsuits started (see "Sony Sued For Rootkit Copy Protection"). Sony BMG suspended production (see "Sony Halts Production of ‘Rootkit’ CDs"), but said it would continue using DRM software from SunnComm (see "Sony Shipping Spyware from SunnComm, Too"). Among others, Microsoft said it will try to eradicate the hard-to-kill DRM software (see "Microsoft Will Wipe Sony’s ‘Rootkit’").

What would drive Sony BMG to such a course of action? Blame that slippery new genie, digital media, which seems to want information to not only be free, but infinitely mutable into new works as well. Once it’s granted a few wishes, it’s hard to get it back in the bottle, and the one wish it won’t grant is that the bottle had never been opened in the first place.

Faced with rampant file sharing that is based on CDs, music companies now want to nip the rip in the bud: put DRM software on customers’ PCs that will control how they use a CD’s digital tracks. Of course, it would be better from their perspective if such controls were built in to the operating system, but, if not, a little deep digital surgery can add lacking functionality.

The potential result for consumers is multiple DRM modifications to their PCs that may conflict with each other, open security holes, deny legitimate use, and have other negative side effects.

In the hullabaloo over the technical aspects of the Sony BMG DRM fiasco, it’s important not to lose sight of this: your CD is now licensed. First sale rights are gone, fair use is gone, and the license reigns supreme.

Pity the poor music librarian, who was already struggling to figure out how to deal with digital audio reserves. Between DRM-protected tracks from services such as iTunes and DRM-protected CDs that modify their PCs, they "live in interesting times."

While the Sony BMG fiasco has certain serio-comic aspects to it, rest assured that music (and other entertainment companies) will eventually iron out the most obvious kinks in the context of operating systems that are designed for intrinsic DRM support and, after some bumps in the road, a new era of DRM-protected digital multimedia will dawn.

That is, it will dawn unless musicians, other digital media creators, and consumers do something about it first.

Scholarly Electronic Publishing Weblog Update (11/7/05)

Posted in Announcements on November 7th, 2005

The latest update of the Scholarly Electronic Publishing Weblog (SEPW) is now available, which provides brief information on 17 new journal issues and other resources. Especially interesting are: "The Accessing and Archiving of Electronic Journals: Challenges and Implications Within the Library World"; "DAEDALUS: Delivering the Glasgow ePrints Service"; "Improving DSpace@OSU with a Usability Study of the ET/D Submission Process"; "A Journey into E-Resource Administration Hell"; "Library Futures, Media Futures"; and "Repositories, Copyright and Creative Commons for Scholarly Communication."

The Google Print Controversy: A Bibliography

Posted in Bibliographies, Copyright, Google and Other Search Engines, Scholarly Communication on October 25th, 2005

Update: See the Google Book Search Bibliography, Version 2 for the latest bibliography.

This bibliography presents selected English-language electronic works about Google Print that are freely available on the Internet. It has a special focus on the legal issues associated with this project. Page numbers for print/electronic publications are not included unless they are mentioned in the electronic version.

Association of American Publishers. "Google Library Project Raises Serious Questions for Publishers and Authors."

Association of Learned and Professional Society Publishers. "Google Print for Libraries—ALPSP Position Statement."

Authors Guild. "Authors Guild Sues Google, Citing 'Massive Copyright Infringement'."

Band. Jonathan. "The Google Print Library Project: A Copyright Analysis." ARL: A Bimonthly Report on Research Library Issues and Actions from ARL, CNI, and SPARC, no. 242 (2005): 6-9.

Banks, Marcus A. "The Excitement of Google Scholar, the Worry of Google Print." Biomedical Digital Libraries 2 (Article 2 2005).

Battelle, John. "The AAP/Google Lawsuit: Much More At Stake ." John Battelle's Searchblog, 20 October 2005.

Blankenhorn, Dana. "Economic Lesson of Google Print." Moore's Lore, 21 October 2005.

Chafkin, Max. "Google Scrambles to Defend 'Google Print for Libraries' Initiative." The Book Standard, 21 October 2005.

Coleman, Mary Sue. "Riches We Must Share . . ." The Washington Post, 22 October 2005, A21.

Crawford, Susan. "Why Google Is Right." Susan Crawford Blog, 21 September 2005.

Drummond, David. "Why We Believe in Google Print." Google Blog, 19 October 2005.

DW staff. "German Publishers Warm to Google Library." Deutsche Welle, 20 October 2005.

Felten, Edward W. "Google Print, Damages and Incentives." Freedom to Tinker, 23 September 2005.

Finkelstein, Seth. "Google Print Is Not Copyright's Enemy-Of-My-Enemy-Is-My-Friend." Infothought, 23 September 2005.

Google. "Google Checks Out Library Books."

———. "Google Print."

———. "Information for Publishers about the Library Project."

Google, and University Library, University of Michigan. "Cooperative Agreement."

Graham, Jefferson. "Google Print Project Inspires Fans, Fears." USA Today, 17 October 2005.

Helm, Burt. "For Google, Another Stormy Chapter." BusinessWeek, 22 September 2005.

———. "A Google Project Pains Publishers." BusinessWeek, 23 May 2005.

———. "Google's Escalating Book Battle." BusinessWeek, 20 October 2005.

———. "Google's Plan Doesn't Scan." BusinessWeek, 12 August 2005.

———. "A New Page in Google's Books Fight." BusinessWeek, 22 June 2005.

Hof, Rob. "Lawsuit Against Google Print: The End of the Internet?" The Tech Beat, 21 October 2005.

Keegan, Victor. "A Bookworm's Delight." The Guardian, 21 October 2005.

Lavoie, Brian, Lynn Silipigni Connaway, and Lorcan Dempsey. "Anatomy of Aggregate Collections: The Example of Google Print for Libraries." D-Lib Magazine 11, no. 9 (2005).

Lessig, Lawrence. "Google Sued." Lessig Blog, 22 September 2005.

Marco, Meghann. "So, My Publisher Is Sueing Google. . ." MeghannMarco.com, 19 October 2005.

Markoff, John, and Edward Wyatt. "Google Is Adding Major Libraries to Its Database." The New York Times, 14 December 2004.

Mathes, Adam. "The Point of Google Print." Google Blog, 19 October 2005.

O'Reilly, Tim. "Google Library vs. Publishers." O'Reilly Radar, 13 August 2005.

Patry, William. "Google Revisited." The Patry Copyright Blog, 23 September 2005.

______. "Google, the Second Suit and Second Copy." The Patry Copyright Blog, 21 October 2005.

Petit, C. E. "Author's Guild v. Google: A Skeptical Analysis." Scrivener's Error: Warped Weft, 2005.

Pickering, Bobby. "Google Clarifies Print Differences in Europe." Information World Review, 18 October 2005.

Quilter, Laura. "Google & Not-for-Profit Libraries." Derivative Work, 13 August 2005.

Quint, Barbara. "CORRECTIONS: Google Print Not All I Said It Was." Information Today NewsBreaks & the Weekly News Digest, 29 August 2005.

———. "Google and Research Libraries Launch Massive Digitization Project." Information Today NewsBreaks & the Weekly News Digest, 20 December 2004.

———. "Google Library Project Hit by Copyright Challenge from University Presses." Information Today NewsBreaks & the Weekly News Digest, 31 May 2005.

———. "Google Slows Library Project to Accommodate Publishers." Information Today NewsBreaks & the Weekly News Digest, 15 August 2005.

———. "Google's Library Project: Questions, Questions, Questions." Information Today NewsBreaks & the Weekly News Digest, 27 December 2004.

———. "The Other Shoe Drops: Google Print Sued for Copyright Violation." Information Today NewsBreaks & the Weekly News Digest, 3 October 2005.

Raff, Andrew. "Google, Publishers, Copies and 'Being Evil'." IPTAblog, 21 September 2005.

Slater, Derek. "Google Print Commentary Round-Up." A Copyfighter's Musings, 20 October 2005.

Smith, Adam M. "Making Books Easier to Find." Google Blog, 11 August 2005.

Suber, Peter. "Does Google Library Violate Copyright?" SPARC Open Access Newsletter, no. 90 (2005).

Sullivan, Danny. "Forget Google Print Copyright Infringement; Search Engines Already Infringe." Search Engine Watch, 25 May 2005.

_______. "Indexing Versus Caching & How Google Print Doesn't Reprint." Search Engine Watch, 21 October 2005.

Taylor, Nick. ". . . But Not at Writers' Expense." The Washington Post, 22 October 2005, A21.

Thompson, Bill. "Defending Google's Licence to Print." BBC News, 10 October 2005.

University Library, University of Michigan. "UM Library/Google Digitization Partnership FAQ, August 2005."

Vaidhyanathan, Siva. "Google Avoids Copyright Meltdown." SIVACRACY.NET: Opinions, Rants, and Obsessions of Siva Vaidhyanathan and his Friends and Family, 12 August 2005.

_______. "On the Essense of Libraries and Fair Use." SIVACRACY.NET: Opinions, Rants, and Obsessions of Siva Vaidhyanathan and his Friends and Family, 18 August 2005.

_______. "'Steal This Book'." On the Media, 30 September 2005.

"Why I Think Google's Library Plan was Out of Bounds." SIVACRACY.NET: Opinions, Rants, and Obsessions of Siva Vaidhyanathan and his Friends and Family, 13 August 2005.

von Lohmann, Fred. "Authors Guild Sues Google." Deep Links, 20 September 2005.

Wentworth, Donna. "Google Print Is as Google Print Does." Copyfight, 15 August 2005.

Wilkin, John P., and Reginald Carr. "Google's Library Digitization Project: Reports from Michigan and Oxford."

Wojcicki, Susan. "Google Print and the Authors Guild." Google Blog, 20 September 2005.

Wu,Tim. "Leggo My Ego." Slate, 17 October 2005.

Wyatt, Edward. "Google Opens 8 Sites in Europe, Widening Its Book Search Effort." The New York Times, 18 October 2005.

Selected by Librarians' Index to the Internet

Scholarly Electronic Publishing Weblog Update (10/24/05)

Posted in Announcements on October 24th, 2005

The update of the Scholarly Electronic Publishing Weblog (SEPW) is now available, which provides brief information on 22 new journal issues and other resources. Especially interesting are: Acquiring Copyright Permission to Digitize and Provide Open Access to Books "; The Dublin Core Metadata Registry: Requirements, Implementation, and Experience"; "Exploiting ‘Light-Weight’ Protocols and Open Source Tools to Implement Digital Library Collections and Services"; "Library Access to Scholarship"; New Journal Publishing Models: An International Survey of Senior Researchers; Open Access Citation Information; "Open Access to Science in the Developing World"; and "The Status of Open Access Publishing by Academic Societies."

Scholarly Electronic Publishing Weblog Update (10/7/05)

Posted in Announcements on October 7th, 2005

The update of the Scholarly Electronic Publishing Weblog (SEPW) is now available, which provides brief information on 26 new journal issues and other resources. Especially interesting are: "Academic Institutional Repositories: Deployment Status in 13 Nations as of Mid 2005"; "BioOne’s Business Model Shift: Balancing the Interests of Libraries and Independent Publishers"; "Does Google Library Violate Copyright?"; "Electronic Scientific Information, Open Access, and Editorial Peer Review: Changes on the Horizon"; "Institutional Repository Deployment in the United States as of Early 2005"; "New Roles for a Changing Environment: Implications of Open Access for Libraries"; "Project MUSE’s New Pricing Model: A Case Study in Collaboration"; and "You Get What You Pay for? Archival Access to Electronic Journals."

What’s in Your Digital Asset Catastrophe Plan?

Posted in Digital Curation & Digital Preservation on September 30th, 2005

Anything? You likely have a disaster plan that addresses digital asset issues. The potential problem with a disaster plan is that it can be grounded in assumptions of relative normalcy: the building burns down, a tornado hits, a lower-category hurricane strikes. It may assume severe damage within a confined area and an unimpaired ability of federal, state, and local agencies (as well as relief organizations) to respond. It may assume that workers are not at the disaster site, that they are relatively unaffected if they are, or that they can evacuate and return with relative ease and speed. It may assume that your offsite tape storage or "hot" backup site is far enough away to be unaffected.

What it probably doesn’t assume is the complete devastation of your city or town; widespread Internet, phone, power, and water outages that could last weeks or months; improbable multiple disasters across a wide region surrounding you; the inability of officials at all levels of government to adequately respond to a quickly deepening crisis; the lack of truly workable evacuation plans; depleted gas supplies for a hundred miles in all directions; your evacuated workers being scattered across a multiple-state area in motels, hotels, and the houses of friends and relatives after trips or 20 to 30 hours in massive traffic jams; your institution’s administration being relocated to a hotel in another city; evacuees ending up in new disaster zones and needing to evacuate yet again; and the possibility of more local post-catastrophe catastrophes in short order.

Here’s some thoughts. You may need to have your backups and hot sites in a part of the country that is unlikely to be experiencing a simultaneous catastrophe. This will not be reliable or convenient if physical data transportation is involved. Your latest data could end up in a delivery service depot in your city or town when the event happens. Even if this doesn’t occur, how frequently will you ship out those updates? Daily? Weekly? Another frequency?

Obviously, a remote hot site is better than just backups. But, if hot sites were cheap, we’d all have them.

In terms of backups, how software/hardware-specific are your systems? Will you have to rebuild a complex hardware/software environment to create a live system? Will the components that you need be readily available? Will you have the means to acquire, house, and implement them?

Lots of copies do keep stuff safe, but there have to be lots of copies. Here are two key issues: copyright and will (no doubt there are many more).

You may have a treasure trove of locally produced digital materials, but, if they are under normal copyright arrangements, no one can replicate them. It took considerable resources to create your digital materials. It’s a natural tendency to want to protect them so that they are accessible, but still yours alone. The question to ask yourself is what do I want to prevent users from doing, now and in the future, with these materials? The Creative Commons licences offer options that bar commercial and derivative use, but still provide the freedom to replicate licensed data. True, if you allow replication, you will not really be able to have unified use statistics, but, in the final analysis, what’s more important statistics or digital asset survival? If you allow derivative works, you may find others add value to your work in surprising and novel ways that benefit your users.

However, merely making your digital assets available doesn’t mean that anyone will go to the trouble of replicating or enhancing them. That requires will on the part of others, and they are busy with their own projects. Moreover, they assume that your digital materials will remain available, not disappear forever in the blink of an eye.

It strikes me that digital asset catastrophe planning may call for cooperative effort by libraries, IT centers, and other data-intensive nonprofit organizations. Perhaps by working jointly economic and logistical barriers can be overcome and cost-effective solutions can emerge.

OAB, OAW, SEPB, and SEPW Zip Files

Posted in Announcements on September 29th, 2005

Zip files (with adjusted URLs that allow mirroring) for the above publications are available.

  • SEPB/SEPW (complete archive; will be updated as SEPB changes)
  • OAB/OAW (all files in one subdirectory)

With the exception of the OAW, these publications are under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial 2.5 License (the OAW is under version 2 of the license).

All Publication Backup Files Deleted

Posted in Announcements on September 27th, 2005

Backups and Zip files for the OAB, PACS Review, SEPB/SEPW have been deleted from this site. The normal URLS are all working now.

PACS Review, SEPB, and SEPW Back Up at UH

Posted in Announcements on September 26th, 2005

Access to the PACS Review, SEPB, and SEPW has been restored at their normal URLs:

PACS Review, and OAB, and SEPB/SEPW Mirrors

Posted in Announcements on September 23rd, 2005

Roy Tennant has provided mirror sites. Thanks, Roy.

http://roytennant.com/oab/oab.htm

http://roytennant.com/pr/pacsrev.html

http://roytennant.com/sepb/sepb.html

PACS Review Access

Posted in Announcements on September 23rd, 2005

The Public-Access Computer Systems Review could be unavailable for some indefinite period due to Hurricane Rita. However, it allows copying for noncommercial, educational use by academic computer centers, individual scholars, and libraries. It could be mirrored with some URL adjustment if it were done quickly.

Zip file with all journal content

SEPB, SEPW, and OAB Access

Posted in Announcements on September 23rd, 2005

It turns out that the LISHost server is located in Houston, so access to SEPB, SEPW, and the OAB could cease for some indefinite period. However, since all of these publications are under a Creative Commons Attribution NonCommercial License, they could be mirrored as long as that occurred quickly.

  • SEPB and SEPW in one zip file. No URL editing required.
  • OAB. Some URL editing required.

Temporary URL for SEPB

Posted in Announcements on September 21st, 2005

Due to Hurricane Rita, a backup of the Scholarly Electronic Publishing Bibliography has been made available.

Scholarly Electronic Publishing Weblog Update (9/13/05)

Posted in Announcements on September 13th, 2005

The biweekly update of the Scholarly Electronic Publishing Weblog (SEPW) is now available, which provides brief information on 14 new journal issues and other resources. Especially interesting are: Audit Checklist for Certifying Digital Repositories, "Reforming Scholarly Publishing and Knowledge Communication: From the Advent of the Scholarly Journal to the Challenges of Open Access"; Scholarly Electronic Publishing Bibliography, Version 59; Towards Good Practices of Copyright in Open Access Journals: A Study among Authors of Articles in Open Access Journals; and "Update on First Fruits of NIH Policy."

Version 59, Scholarly Electronic Publishing Bibliography

Posted in Bibliographies, Digital Scholarship Publications, Scholarly Communication on September 9th, 2005

Version 59 of the Scholarly Electronic Publishing Bibliography is now available. This selective bibliography presents over 2,480 articles, books, and other printed and electronic sources that are useful in understanding scholarly electronic publishing efforts on the Internet.

The Open Access Bibliography: Liberating Scholarly Literature with E-Prints and Open Access Journals, by the same author, provides much more in-depth coverage of the open access movement and related topics (e.g., disciplinary archives, e-prints, institutional repositories, open access journals, and the Open Archives Initiative) than SEPB does.

The "Open Access Webliography" (with Ho) complements the OAB, providing access to a number of Websites related to open access topics.

Changes in This Version

The bibliography has the following sections (revised sections are marked with an asterisk):

Table of Contents

1 Economic Issues
2 Electronic Books and Texts
2.1 Case Studies and History
2.2 General Works*
2.3 Library Issues
3 Electronic Serials
3.1 Case Studies and History*
3.2 Critiques
3.3 Electronic Distribution of Printed Journals
3.4 General Works*
3.5 Library Issues*
3.6 Research*
4 General Works*
5 Legal Issues
5.1 Intellectual Property Rights*
5.2 License Agreements*
5.3 Other Legal Issues
6 Library Issues
6.1 Cataloging, Identifiers, Linking, and Metadata*
6.2 Digital Libraries*
6.3 General Works*
6.4 Information Integrity and Preservation*
7 New Publishing Models*
8 Publisher Issues*
8.1 Digital Rights Management
9 Repositories, E-Prints, and OAI*
Appendix A. Related Bibliographies*
Appendix B. About the Author*
Appendix C. SEPB Use Statistics

Scholarly Electronic Publishing Resources includes the following sections:

Cataloging, Identifiers, Linking, and Metadata*
Digital Libraries*
Electronic Books and Texts*
Electronic Serials*
General Electronic Publishing*
Images
Legal*
Preservation
Publishers
Repositories, E-Prints, and OAI*
SGML and Related Standards

Further Information about SEPB

The HTML version of SEPB is designed for interactive use. Each major section is a separate file. There are links to sources that are freely available on the Internet. It can be can be searched using Boolean operators.

The HTML document includes three sections not found in the Acrobat file:

  1. Scholarly Electronic Publishing Weblog (biweekly list of new resources; also available by mailing list)
  2. Scholarly Electronic Publishing Resources (directory of over 270 related Web sites)
  3. Archive (prior versions of the bibliography)

The Acrobat file is designed for printing. The printed bibliography is over 200 pages long. The Acrobat file is over 550 KB.

Related Article

An article about the bibliography has been published in The Journal of Electronic Publishing.

Selected by Librarians' Index to the Internet

Scholarly Electronic Publishing Weblog Update (8/29/05)

Posted in Announcements on August 29th, 2005

The biweekly update of the Scholarly Electronic Publishing Weblog (SEPW) is now available, which provides brief information on 15 new journal issues and other resources. Especially interesting are: "Developing Digital Preservation Programs: The Cornell Survey of Institutional Readiness, 2003-2005"; "Dramatic Growth of Open Access: Revised Update"; "Google, the Naked Emperor"; and Institutional Repositories for the Research Sector: Feasibility Study.

The E-Print Deposit Conundrum

Posted in E-Prints, Institutional Repositories, Open Access on August 25th, 2005

How can scholars be motivated to deposit e-prints in disciplinary archives, institutional repositories, and other digital archives?

In "A Key-Stroke Koan for Our Open-Access Times," Stevan Harnad says:

Researchers themselves have hinted at the resolution to this koan: Yes, they need and want OA. But there are many other demands on their time too, and they will only perform the requisite keystrokes if their employers and/or funders require them to do it, just as it is already their employers and funders who require them to do the keystrokes to publish (or perish) in the first place. It is employers and funders who set researchers’ priorities, because it is employers and funders who reward researchers’ performance. Today, about 15% of research is self-archived spontaneously but 95% of researchers sampled report that they would self-archive if required to do so by their employers and/or funders: 81% of them willingly, 14% reluctantly; only 5% would not comply with the requirement. And in the two objective tests to date of this self-reported prediction, both have fully confirmed it, with over 90% self-archiving in the two cases where it was made a requirement (Southampton-ECS and CERN).

This is a very cogent point, but, if the solution to the problem is to have scholars’ employers compel them to deposit e-prints, the next logical question is: how can university administrators and other key decision makers be convinced to mandate this activity?

In the UK, a debate is raging between OA advocates and publishers about the UK Research Funding Councils’ (RCUK) self-archiving proposal, which would "mandate the web self-archiving of authors’ final drafts of all journal articles resulting from RCUK-funded research." The fact that this national policy debate is occuring at all is an enormous advance for open access. If RCUK mandates e-print deposit, UK university administrators will need no convincing.

In the US, we are a long way from reaching that point, although the NIH’s voluntary e-print deposit policy provides some faint glimmer of hope that key government agencies can be moved to take some kind of action. However, the US does not have an equivalent to RUCK that can make dramatic e-print policy changes that affect research universities in one fell swoop. It does have government agencies, such as NSF, that control federal grant funds, private foundations that control their own grant funds, and thousands of universities and colleges that, in theory, could establish policies. This is a diffuse and varied audience for the OA message to reach and convince, and the message will need to be tailored to the audience to be effective.

While that plays out, we should not forget scholars themselves, however dimly we view the prospects of changing their behavior to be. University librarians and IT staff know their institutions’ scholars and can work with them one-one-one or in groups to gradually influence change. True, it’s "a journey of a thousand miles" approach, but, the number of librarians and IT staff that will be effective on a national stage is small, while the number of them that may be incrementally effective on the local level is large. The efforts are complementary, not mutually exclusive.

I would urge you to read Nancy Fried Foster and Susan Gibbons’ excellent article "Understanding Faculty to Improve Content Recruitment for Institutional Repositories" for a good example of how an IR can be personalized so that faculty have a greater sense of connection to it and how IR staff can change the way they talk about the IR to better match scholars’ world view.

Here are a few brief final thoughts.

First, as is often said, scholars care about the impact of their work, and it is likely that, if scholars could easily see detailed use statistics for their works (e.g., number of requests and domain breakdowns), they might be more inclined to deposit items if those statistics exceed their expectations. So, the challenge here is to incorporate this capability into commonly used archiving software programs if it is absent.

Second, scholars are unlikely to stumble when entering bibliographic data about their works (although it might not be quite as fully descriptive as purists might like), but entering subject keywords is another matter. Sure they know what the work is about, but are they using terms that others would use and that group their work with similar works in retrieval results? Yes, a controlled vocabulary would help, although such vocabularies have their own challenges. But, I wonder if user-generated "tags," such as those used in Technorati, might be another approach. The trick here is to make the tags and the frequency of their use visible to both authors and searchers. For authors, this helps them put their works where they will be found. For searchers, it helps them find the works.

Third, it might be helpful if an author could fill out a bibliographic template for a work once and, with a single keystroke, submit it to multiple designated digital archives and repositories. So, for example, a library author might choose to submit a work to his or her institutional repository, DLIST, and E-LIS all at once. Of course, this would require a minimal level of standardization of template information between systems and the development of appropriate import capabilities. Some will say: "why bother?" True, OAI-PMH harvesting should, in theory, make duplicate deposit unnecessary given OAIster-like systems. But "lots of copies keep stuff safe," and users still take a single-archive searching approach in spite of OAI-PMH systems.

Searchable Version of the Open Access Webliography

Posted in Announcements, Open Access, Scholarly Communication, Webliographies on August 17th, 2005

Jim Pitman, Professor of Statistics and Mathematics at the University of California, Berkeley, has created a derivative work from the Open Access Webliography, which is under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial License.

This version of the OAW utilizes the BibServer software, and it is searchable. There are four views of the entries:

  • Bookmark: A link to the resource.
  • Plain text: A field-oriented ASCII presentation of the resource with active links in the description field.
  • Linked text: A field-oriented HTML presentation of the resource with complete active links.
  • Descriptions: The resource name and description with active links.

Entries are can be sorted by category, description, title, and URL.

Thanks, Jim.

Scholarly Electronic Publishing Weblog Update (8/15/05)

Posted in Announcements on August 15th, 2005

The biweekly update of the Scholarly Electronic Publishing Weblog (SEPW) is now available, which provides brief information on 17 new journal issues and other resources. Especially interesting are: "E-LIS: an International Open Archive Towards Building Open Digital Libraries," "In the Public Interest: Open Access," "Investigating the Biblioblogosphere" in Cites & Insights: Crawford at Large, "A Proposal for an Open Content Licence for Research Paper (Pr)ePrints," Sponsorships for Nonprofit Scholarly & Scientific Journals: A Guide to Defining & Negotiating Successful Sponsorships, and a special issue of Reference Services Review on the role of reference librarians in institutional repositories.

The Role of Reference Librarians in Institutional Repositories

Posted in Announcements, Institutional Repositories, Open Access, Scholarly Communication on August 13th, 2005

Reference Services Review 33, no. 3 (2005) is a special issue on "the role of the reference librarian in the development, management, dissemination, and sustainability of institutional repositories (IRs)." It includes the following articles (the links are to e-prints):

Open Access Webliography

Posted in Announcements, Open Access, Scholarly Communication, Webliographies on August 10th, 2005

A preprint of the article "Open Access Webliography" by Adrian K. Ho and Charles W. Bailey, Jr. is now available. This annotated webliography presents a wide range of electronic resources related to the open access movement that were freely available on the Internet as of April 2005.

This article appears in the volume 33, no. 3 (2005) issue of "Reference Services Review," which is a special issue about "the role of the reference librarian in the development, management, dissemination, and sustainability of institutional repositories."

A preprint of my "The Role of Reference Librarians in Institutional Repositories" article in this issue is also available.

Both preprints are under the Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial License.

Below is a list of the topics covered in the webliography:

  • Starting Points
  • Bibliographies
  • Debates
  • Directories—E-Prints, Institutional Repositories, and
    Technical Reports
  • Directories—Open Access and Free Journals
  • Directories and Guides—Copyright and Licensing
  • Directories and Guide—Open Access Publishing
  • Directories and Guides—Software
  • Disciplinary Archives
  • E-Serials about Open Access
  • Free E-Serials That Frequently Publish Open Access
    Articles
  • General Information
  • Mailing Lists
  • Organizations
  • Projects
  • Publishers and Distributors
  • Search Engines
  • Special Programs for Developing Countries
  • Statements
  • Weblogs

The Economics of Free, Scholar-Produced E-Journals

Posted in E-Journals, Open Access, Scholarly Communication on August 4th, 2005

While highly visible, large-scale STM open access publishing ventures such as BioMed Central loom large in the free e-journal scene, small-scale scholar-produced e-journals continue to quietly publish new scholarly articles as they have done for at least 18 years now.

I won’t detour into a lengthy history lesson for those readers who weren’t there. The short version of the story is that New Horizons in Adult Education is typically seen as the first scholarly e-journal published on the Internet (it was established in Fall 1987); however, it’s important to recognize that those were primitive times Internet-wise, when distribution of ASCII article files via list servers and FTP servers were cutting-edge ventures. So, as you would image, finding tools were informal and few and far between. ARL’s publication of the Directory of Electronic Journals, Newsletters, and Academic Discussion Lists in July 1991 was a landmark event that made the invisible visible.

For some reason, there was a mini-surge of activity in the 1989-1991 period, with the emergence of the Bryn Mawr Classical Review, EJournal, Electronic Journal of Communication, Journal of the International Academy of Hospitality Research, Postmodern Culture, Psycoloquy, The Public-Access Computer Systems Review, Surfaces, and other journals. Several editors (myself, Stevan Harnad, and John Unsworth) rocked the house at the Association of Research Libraries’ 1992 Symposium on Scholarly Publishing on the Electronic Networks to the dismay of the assembled conventional publishers, who thought we were mad as hatters because we thought that: (a) e-journals were viable, (b) we could anoint ourselves as publishers, and (c) we were giving it away for free. My recollection is that, after the last speech, there was a stunned silence followed by a spattering of applause and a frenzy of generally hostile, astonished questions.

And, as they say, the rest is history. Peter Suber’s Timeline of the Open Access Movement is a good way to get a handle on subsequent events. Someday, I’ll write more about the early e-volution of e-journals.

So, onto the topic at hand. What are the economics of free, scholar-produced e-journals?

Let’s delimit the field a bit. We are not talking about journals produced by university presses or professional associations. Scholar-produced e-journals are generally labors of love, supported by a small group of scholars who serve without pay as editors, editorial board members, and journal production staff.

They often leverage existing technical infrastructure (e.g., Web servers) at the editors’ institutions. The volume of published papers is typically fairly modest, and the papers themselves are frequently not graphically complex. Editors or other volunteers manage the peer review process (usually via electronic means) as well as copy edit and format articles. HTML and PDF are the usual distribution formats, requiring HTML editors, Word, Acrobat, or similar low-cost or free programs. Increasingly, electronic journal management systems are used to automate editorial functions and simplify journal site creation and maintenance (a prime example is the free Open Journal Systems software). "Marketing" is often done by free electronic means: journal mailing lists, table of contents messages sent to targeted subject-related mailing lists, RSS alerts, etc. Since the content is free and electronic, there is no overhead for subscription/licensing management. Since no one gets paid, human resources functions are not needed. If authors retain copyright or content is under a Creative Commons or similar license, no permissions support is needed. Since existing facilities are used (at work or at home), there is no need to rent or purchase office space. Since no money is changing hands in any form, accounting support is unnecessary.

So, what are the economics of free, scholar produced journals? The glib answer is that there are none. But, the real answer is that the costs are so low and the functions so integral to scholarship that they are easily absorbed into ongoing operational costs of universities. Even if they weren’t and scholars had to do it all on their own, server hosting solutions are so ubiquitous and cheap, free open source software is so functional and pervasive, and commercial PC software is so powerful and cheap (especially at academic discounts) that these minor costs would act as no real barrier to the production of scholar-produced e-journals.

Of course, this is not to say that there are not issues associated with the viability and sustainability of these journals, the perpetual preservation of their contents, and other difficulties, but these are topics for another day.


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Copyright © 2005-2020 by Charles W. Bailey, Jr.

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