(#19) Publications, Publishing, Publisher, Public

In full disclosure, I have not (recently) consulted a dictionary regarding these words, but I am going to discuss some thoughts I have on their definition(s).

To make public is how I primarily think about publishing.  That’s a pretty simple view and I am certain it would not hold up in a legal case.  Each day, as digital publishing librarian, I help scholars and researchers (authors) make their publications public (publish) using the technology our team has available within the IUScholarWorks suite of services.

We manage traditional forms of publications, i.e., text, and we work with audio and visual materials too.  We explore and in some cases support new publication trends and forms such as portals, blogs as scholarly serialsmash-ups and alternative metrics.

We engage in open access publishing, but we are not certain that we are a publisher.  Why do we, maybe it is really just I, keep questioning this?

To help me figure this out, I engaged in an exercise to list out the things we provide for journal publications via the IUScholarWorks Journals Service.  We:

  1. Support the journal’s publisher of choice – whether it is IUScholarWorks or another entity such as a society or association.
  2. Support a journal’s copyright policy of choice and consult on intellectual property matters upon request.
  3. Support continuous publishing with no requirements or restrictions on pages or the number of volumes/issues per year.
  4. Publish non-text materials like video, audio, and images – in the article or supplemental to an article.
  5. Provide tools that manage editorial work: blind peer review system, electronic author submissions, communication amongst those doing the work/editing, and various reader tools may be elected to be turned on such as: comments, contacting the author, notify a colleague, how to cite (MLA, APA, Chicago style).
  6. Continue services for a publication once it has moved from Indiana University.
  7. Provide and manage trusted infrastructure and policies for the preservation of digital objects.
  8. Support a journal’s unique URL for their publication if they manage the domain registration.
  9. Train on software and provide technical support.
  10. Supply article-level use statistics – currently annually.
  11. Supply announcements and table of contents feeds to readers.
  12. Import back-files if rights can be transferred (if necessary).
  13. Update library cataloging records supplied to OCLC – so that records across libraries can be updated.
  14. Support harvestable metadata for discovery by various search engines.
  15. Supply metadata and articles to indexing/abstracting services (such as Ebsco or Proquest).
  16. Manage or help apply for an ISSN (international standard serial number).
  17. Provide limited design work as student staff expertise permits.  If a journal is migrating to our platform, we will endeavor to keep the design as similar as possible within our framework constraints.
  18. Are genuinely helpful and supportive to our scholars and researchers.

It’s an impressive list of what IUScholarWorks services and staff can do for a journal publication. Perhaps, upon review, IUScholarWorks Journals is a publisher, publishing various publications and making them publicly accessible to the world-wide public. I also came up with a shorter list of things we do not do, and I will write about them soon.

(#10) View from the GA – A Reading on Copyright

Sherri Michaels and Jennifer Laherty have given me a series of readings about institutional repositories and the issues that affect them. I will be periodically posting my thoughts about these readings.

Copyright and Cultural Institutions: Guidelines for Digitization for U.S. Libraries, Archives, and Museums, by Peter Hirtle, Emily Hudson, and Andrew T. Kenyon goes over copyright law as it affects and applies to digitization projects at libraries, museums, and other cultural institutions. This very detailed manual covers all the law’s parts and exemptions, with discussions of how they’ve changed over time. It also touches on trademark and privacy issues, especially as they apply to audio-visual materials. The text contains plenty of examples and case histories throughout, which keeps the discussions grounded in the real activities and problems of cultural institutions and their digitization projects. Hirtle, Hudson, and Kenyon have also included many tables, flowcharts, and checklists to help break down and map out the various steps and issues in dealing with copyright and permissions.
I found Copyright and Cultural Institutions: Guidelines for Digitization for U.S. Libraries, Archives, and Museums extremely illuminating and helpful. The book was very well-organized and the progression through topics and parts of copyright law was logical and elegant. It was very readable, and contained almost no legalese. The authors frame solutions and approaches to copyright issues in terms of risk and its management rather than as a series of inflexible rules. This book gave me a better and fuller understanding of what the requirements, exceptions, and pitfalls are for library digitization projects. In addition, I gained a good perspective on copyright issues in the non-profit and educational environments.

Copyright and Cultural Institutions: Guidelines for Digitization for U.S. Libraries, Archives, and Museums is available for download at http://ecommons.library.cornell.edu/handle/1813/14142.

(#8) Teaching Scholarly Communication

I’ll be on research leave most of November to explore ways to teach and discuss scholarly communication issues with graduate students.  My plan is to develop a workshop that could be delivered in 2-4 hours with the help and support of colleagues such as academic department graduate student advisors, subject librarians, and staff in the IUScholarWorks department.

I will be working to develop lesson plans and exercises that will focus the workshop discussions on the following interconnected scholarly communication issues:

  • budgets
  • libraries
  • author rights
  • open access
  • labor
  • versions
  • digital content
  • preservation

The ultimate goal is to inform students about these issues and give them some tools to help them guide their path forward as authors.  They will have many decisions to make as they progress as researchers in their respective fields and I feel it is important that librarians be a part of their education on these matters.

I will also conduct a literature review and will refer to various projects being led by library colleagues around the United States who are developing similar approaches to teaching scholarly communications to students.

Please look for a progress report I will make in December, and I hope to see you in one of our future workshops.

(#1) What is Scholarly Communication?

Welcome to the IU Libraries Scholarly Communication blog!  This blog will be a way to keep abreast of scholarly communications news and developments of interest to the IU community.  So what exactly is scholarly communication?  The Association of College and Research Libraries defines it as:

the system through which research and other scholarly writings are created, evaluated for quality, disseminated to the scholarly community, and preserved for future use. The system includes both formal means of communication, such as publication in peer-reviewed journals, and informal channels, such as electronic listservs.”
(http://www.ala.org/ala/mgrps/divs/acrl/publications/whitepapers/principlesstrategies.cfm )

As you can see from this definition, we’ll be covering a wide-range of topics covering all stages of the research and dissemination process.  Since copyright plays an important role in this area, we’ll be throwing quite a bit of that in as well.  If you’re looking for more information about a particular topic, just let us know and we’ll try to cover it.  Welcome to the blog!