Merry Christmas from the University of Maryland Libraries. Fun, except I think the singer mispronounced “library.”
Because the marketing people in our campus library system are awesome, they make things like these database trading cards. I can’t decide on my favorite.
This is just…so cool. Good job, UMD Libraries, good job.
There’s a breaking story in the world of scholarly journals and library science that’s worth tuning into. It kicked off with a post by Brian Mathewson his Chronicle of Higher Education blogThe Ubiquitous Librarian, in which he revealed that the entire editorial board of the prestigiousJournal of Library Administration(or JLA) had resigned due to the publisher’s onerous author requirements regarding copyright and access.
Mathews is the Associate Dean for the Virginia Tech Libraries, and had been asked to serve as guest editor for a special, speculative issue of the journal on the academic library in fifteen years. This is how he described it:
This special issue explores the possibilities of what libraries might become or cease to be. Experts from different sectors of academia, publishing, technology, and design will share their thoughts, dreams, fears, and hopes about the future. The intention is to produce insights that ignite the imagination — to leapfrog the adjacencies of the coming years and land on a strategic plateau of the near future. This is an opportunity to speculate on the arriving advances as well as to warn of potential loss due to these changes.
Invited authors included not only academic librarians such as Kelly Miller (UCLA), Michael Levine-Clark (University of Denver), and Steven Bell (Temple), but also Google engineer and search educatorDan Russell, Lennie Scott-Webber, an educational environment expert at Steelcase Furniture, and two authors affiliated with electronic resource vendors. It’s a compelling mix, but with the resignation of the JLA’s board, it’s not going to happen — at least in that venue.
Mathews had also invitedJason Griffeyto contribute, but in a move that anticipated the decision made by the editorial board, he declined participation due to the publisher’s restrictions. After Mathews broke the news, Griffeyposted on the subject himself:
On Feb 14, I got an intriguing email from Brian Matthews [sic] about a special edition of the Journal of Library Administration he was editing. It was a request for a chapter for an edition of the journal called Imagining the Future of Libraries, and the Brian’s pitch to me was enough to make me very interested:
[Brian]: “I’d love for you to contribute an essay around the topic of technology. Beyond most digital collections. Beyond everyone and everything mobile— what unfolds then?”
I mean, if I have a specialty, this is it. I love nothing more than I love a good dose of futurism, and told him so. My one concern was the Journal’s publisher, Taylor & Francis, and the fact that I refuse to sign over my copyright on work I create. I’m happy to license it in any number of ways that gives the publisher the rights they need to distribute the work, but I won’t write something for someone else to own.
Thefinal post covering the story(so far; there will be more, I’m sure) is from Chris Bourg, who had recently joined the editorial board of theJournal of Academic Librarianshipand resigned along with her colleagues. She describes the lengths editor Damon Jaggars had gone to convince the publisher to change its practices:
In the meantime, Damon continued to try to convince Taylor & Francis (on behalf of the entire Editorial Board, and with our full support), that their licensing terms were too confusing and too restrictive. A big part of the argument is that the Taylor & Francis author agreement is a real turn-off for authors and was handicapping the Editorial Board’s ability to attract quality content to the journal. The best Taylor & Francis could come up with was a less restrictive license that would cost authors nearly $3000 per article. The Board agreed that this alternative was simply not tenable, so we collectively resigned.
Look for more to emerge on this subject, as librarians start to assert their demand for change in the world of scholarly publishing. And hopefully, somewhere, Brian Mathews’ special issue will find a home — since it sounded fantastic.
So I’m editing this journal issue and…| Brian Mathews, The Ubiquitous Librarian
The Journal of Library Administration| Jason Griffey, Pattern Recognition
My short stint on the JLA editorial board| Chris Bourg, Feral Librarian
Great round up!
Librarian (Instructional and Digital Services) - Full-time, Tenure-track, College of Marin
The College of Marin is hiring an Instructional and Digital Services Librarian with responsibilities in electronic resource management, in-person and online instruction, and collection development.
Kentfield is a small community nestled in a valley between the Marin Headlands and San Francisco Bay, close to the larger community of San Rafael. The nearby Larkspur Ferry takes commuters to and from San Francisco.
The listed requirements include an MLIS (or equivalent), and a demonstrated sensitivity to the diverse backgrounds of community college students. Not listed? Experience. This is a potential opportunity for newbrarians.
In an intriguing twist, compensation for community college positions in California is higher than you’ll get working for UC Berkeley.
Okay, I am team Eastern Seaboard but the Bay Area is a pretty lovely place on Earth. Sounds like a cool job opening!
While faculty status isn’t necessarily all it’s cracked up to be, and plenty of academic librarians function just fine without it, librarians with it consider it to be something of a slap in the face when it’s threatened. They see it as an attack on their professionalism.
At least that’s the way they’re viewing it at the University of Virginia, where the University Librarian has just declared that no new librarians hired will have faculty status, even though some group of librarians has had it for the past 50 years. The announcement was handled the way that all significant and sweeping announcements should be handled…via email.
Because ACRL asked me to do this… I present to you: creepy dating-site John.
What struck me about the workshop — and part of why I felt it was so successful — was the curiosity it generated in the students. Students asked unprompted questions about not only Impact Factors, but open access journals, pay-to-publish journals, journal subscription fees, author reimbursement (or lack thereof), and tenure in academia. These are subjects that have almost never come up in my experience as an instructional librarian (with undergrads); the fact that these were student questions driven by their own investigative experience felt like a breakthrough, as if we crossed a threshold point in their understanding of scholarly resources. I feel like the minutiae of database search will now come more naturally to them despite the lack of any direct discussion of the subject — a win-win if there ever was one.
— Investigating Journals: An Information Literacy Workshop for Science Students | Daniel Ransom, The Pinakes: From Papyrus to PDF (via thepinakes)
The unpleasant truth is that the phenomenon I’ve been describing isn’t just how academia works, it’s how everything works. People want themselves and their publications to be judged on their inherent qualities, but the overwhelming amount of judgment people receive is based on external factors. Where you live, where you work, what you do, where or if you went to school, how you dress, how you talk, what kind of car you drive, and where or if you publish: the majority of people judge you by these signs regardless of what they reveal about your “true” self and its quality. Sometimes that’s the only thing they can do.
Positions available at Humboldt State (part of the California State University system):
Humboldt State is in remote Arcata, California, a coastal town not far from the Oregon border and close to redwood forests and the legendary Lost Coast.View the Humboldt State employment listings»>
- Electronic Resources/Collection Development Librarian (full-time, 12-month, tenure track).
- Librarian for the College of Arts, Humanities, and Social Sciences (full-time, 10-month, tenure track).
- Librarian for the College of Natural Resources and Sciences (full-time, 10-month, tenure track).
Because academic libraries are adjuncts to the institutions they serve, philosophizing about libraries is also philosophizing about higher education, specifically about the origin and purpose of research universities and the effect they have had on higher education and academic libraries […] Academic librarians are trying to support a scholarly mission to create better human beings and a better society through the creation of knowledge in all areas. That’s why we do what we do. There are worse jobs to have.
— Wayne Bivens-Tatum, Why We Do What We Do, Peer-to-Peer Review. (Me: Academic libraries are becoming more than adjuncts to their home institutions with the increase of interdisciplinary research institutes, but that essential role, as adjuncts, is still at the core of everything we do. It also reminds me that I need to read WBT’s book.)
The library should recognize that it is but one constituent group among many and must articulate its unique contribution to the institution’s goals in a compelling way. Libraries can benefit by partnering with other campus units and developing assessment activities in tandem with existing campus systems and data centers.
Libraries, Publishers, Consortia
A new business model for academic libraries and publishers
/via Read 2.0