Friday, October 28, 2011

A National Digital Public Library Begins to Take Shape

The Chronicle of Higher Education reports on a recent meeting about the proposed Digital Public Library of America:
"The Digital Public Library of America doesn't exist yet, but it's closer to becoming a reality.

At an energized meeting held here at the National Archives on Friday, representatives from top cultural institutions and public and research libraries expressed robust support for the proposed library, which would create a portal to allow the public to get easy online access to collections held at many different institutions.

Two foundations said they would together give $5-million in grant money to help get it up and running by April 2013. A major European digital library announced it will work with its planned American counterpart to make their technical structures compatible. And nine technology teams showcased online frameworks they built for a "beta sprint" contest to develop ideas for the technical framework the library will require. . . ."
The complete article

Saturday, October 22, 2011

DPLA 's First Plenary

The Digital Public Library of America's first plenary session kicked off with the announcement of $5 million in funding from the Sloan Foundation and the Arcadia Fund.
More on the plenary meeting.

Friday, October 21, 2011

Robert Darnton on Books, eBooks, Google Books, and the Digital Public Library of America

In a very interesting video interview Robert Darnton, historian and director of the university library at Harvard, talks about books, ebooks, the Google Books settlement, the Digital Public Library of America, and the future of libraries.

Tuesday, October 18, 2011

ACRL Signs Berlin Declaration on Open Access

The Association of College and Research Libraries (ACRL) recently joined the growing ranks of signatories to the Berlin Declaration on Open Access to Knowledge in the Sciences and the Humanities. ACRL encourages college and research libraries, as well as other campus groups, to follow suit.

The declaration builds on the significant progress of the Budapest Open Access Initiative, calling for Open Access to knowledge in the humanities as well as in the sciences. It also moves beyond the scope of primary literature, indicating, “Open access contributions include original scientific research results, raw data and metadata, source materials, digital representations of pictorial and graphical materials and scholarly multimedia material.”

Signatories commit to the principle of Open Access as well as to pursuing solutions that advance the Internet “as an emerging functional medium for distributing knowledge.”

Learn more about the Berlin Declaration.

Friday, October 14, 2011

Europe’s national librarians support opening up their data via CC0

Following the exciting news of Europeana’s new data exchange agreement, which authorizes Europeana to release the metadata for millions of cultural works into the public domain using the CC0 public domain dedication, the Conference of European National Librarians (CENL) voted to support the agreement in a meeting last week at the Royal Library of Denmark. CENL represents Europe’s national libraries and “is responsible for the massive collection of publications that represent the accumulated knowledge of Europe.”

From the press release,

“It means that the datasets describing all the millions of books and texts ever published in Europe – the title, author, date, imprint, place of publication and so on, which exists in the vast library catalogues of Europe – will become increasingly accessible for anybody to re-use for whatever purpose they want. . . ."

Friday, October 7, 2011

Report: Authors and Users vis-à-vis Journals and Repositories

The PEER (Publishing and the Ecology of European Research) Behavioural Research group from the Department of Information Science & LISU, Loughborough University, has completed its study: Authors and Users vis-à-vis Journals and Repositories.

The Executive Summary:
The Behavioural research project is one of three independent research projects commissioned and managed by PEER as part of the PEER Observatory. The aim of the Behavioural research project was to address the role of stage-two manuscript repositories in the scholarly and scientific communication system by exploring perceptions, motivations and behaviours of authors and readers. The research was carried out between April 2009 and August 2011 by the Department of Information Science and LISU at Loughborough University, UK.

Key conclusions:
  • Over the period of Phases 1 and 2 of the Behavioural research project the increase in the number of researchers who reported placing a version of their journal article(s) into an Open Access Repository was negligible.
  • Researchers who associated Open Access with ‘self-archiving’ were in the minority.
  • Open Access is more likely to be associated with ‘self-archiving’ (Green Road) by researchers in the Physical sciences & mathematics and the Social sciences, humanities & arts, than those in the Life sciences and the Medical sciences who are more likely to associate Open Access with Open Access Journals (Gold Road).
  • There is anecdotal evidence that some researchers consider making journal articles accessible via Open Access to be beyond their remit.
  • Authors tend to be favourable to Open Access and receptive to the benefits of self-archiving in terms of greater readership and wider dissemination of their research, with the caveat that self-archiving does not compromise the pivotal role of the published journal article.
  • Readers have concerns about the authority of article content and the extent to which it can be cited when the version they have accessed is not the published final version. These concerns are more prevalent where the purpose of reading is to produce a published journal article, and are perceived as less of an issue for other types of reading purpose.
  • Academic researchers have a conservative set of attitudes, perceptions and behaviours towards the scholarly communication system and do not desire fundamental changes in the way research is currently disseminated and published.
  • Open Access Repositories are perceived by researchers as complementary to, rather than replacing, current forums for disseminating and publishing research.

Wednesday, October 5, 2011

Streaming video decision

From the Chronicle of Higher Education
Judge Dismisses Lawsuit Against UCLA Over Use of Streaming Video
October 4, 2011, 8:18 pm

By Marc Parry

A judge dismissed a lawsuit on Monday that had accused the University of California at Los Angeles of copyright infringement for streaming videos online. One copyright expert thinks the UCLA decision increases the chance that the HathiTrust digital-library consortium will prevail in its effort to fight off a separate copyright lawsuit brought by the Authors Guild over the digitization of books from university libraries.

The case was dismissed largely on the sovereign immunity issue (which does not apply to private universities), and the lack of standing by plaintiffs, who were not copyright holders. This may be a hopeful sign for those watching the HathiTrust orphan rights case.

See Kevin Smith's discussion of the limited applicability of this case.