News You Need to Start the Week

by | Feb 10, 2014 | 0 comments

Library of Congress offering $150,000 for literacy award; The time is now to speed library broadband connections; European Archival Records and Knowledge Preservation project awarded £6 million to save digital data; American Geophysical Union and Wiley launch new OA journal – Earth and Space Science; Massive Marr Sound Archives at U. of Missouri-Kansas City will move into robotic storage unit; Oxford University Press Scholarship Online adds University of North Carolina Press; Canadian Competition Bureau limits agency ebook pricing;  Required college course content continuing move from textbooks to digital materials; and UK Public Libraries participate in access to research initiative.

LibraryOfCongress - Library of Congress offering $150,000 for literacy award

According to District Dispatch “the Library of Congress Center for the Book is now accepting applications for its 2014 Library of Congress Literacy Awards Program, an award that honors three organizations that have made outstanding contributions to increasing literacy in the United States and abroad. The three award winners will be announced during the National Book Festival on August 30, 2014, followed by an awards ceremony and formal presentations by the winners at the Library of Congress in October.

District Dispatch also reports that FCC Chairman Tom Wheeler  helped open the 2014 Digital Learning Day at the Library of Congress by emphasizing “the crucial role of libraries as the “community on-ramp to the world of information.” He also turned the familiar refrain of E-rate as a program for schools and libraries to a program for libraries and schools…

Now, in the larger scheme of E-rate reform, this may seem an insignificant turn of phrase. However, let it be a metaphor for the kind of vision the Chairman has outlined for an E-rate program that delivers on President Obama’s goal of connecting students and their communities to high-capacity broadband within five years – or sooner. By actively engaging and asking E-rate stakeholders, to “turn things around” and think differently, we have been challenged to identify the strengths of the program, weed out what is less efficient or effective, and focus on bringing scalable, high-capacity broadband to libraries and schools at affordable rates…”

Citing a recent press release, KnowledgeSpeak reports that “the European Commission has awarded £6M to archiving and digital preservation specialists to create E-ARK (European Archival Records and Knowledge Preservation), a method of archiving data that is set to become the gold standard across Europe. The system will ensure current digital archives, including ‘big data,’ are future-proofed. Big data is data sets of such a size that it is difficult to manage with traditional software and databases…”

KnowledgeSpeak also notes that “publisher John Wiley & Sons, Inc., US, and the American Geophysical Union (AGU) have announced the creation of a new all open access peer-reviewed journal, Earth and Space Science.

Marking AGU’s second new open access journal in the last 12 months, Earth and Space Science claims to be the only journal that reflects the expansive range of science represented by AGU’s 62,000 members, including all of the Earth, planetary, and space sciences, and related fields in environmental science, geoengineering, space engineering, and biogeochemistry.

Citing the Kansas City Star, InfoDOCKET reports that “thousands of discs — one of the largest archived collections of recorded sound in the country — are being relocated to the [ Miller Nichols Library’s] third floor, where they will be housed in the university’s gargantuan, robotic storage unit.

The unprecedented move will give the discs digital identities and better preserve the collection, but visitors will no longer be able to stand amid its vastness…”

oxford UP Oxford University Press Scholarship Online adds University of North Carolina Press

No Shelf Required reports that “Oxford University Press is pleased to announce it will partner with the University of North Carolina Press to launch North Carolina Scholarship Online on OUP’s University Press Scholarship Online (UPSO) platform to take advantage of a fully enabled XML environment with cutting-edge search and discovery functionality…”

According to Digital Book World  “the Competition Bureau of Canada, an independent law enforcement agency, announced that it has reached an agreement with four major trade book publishers that limits their use of agency ebook pricing in Canada.  
Following an 18-month investigation into the ebook industry in Canada, the Competition Bureau concluded that Hachette, HarperCollins, Macmillan, and Simon & Schuster have engaged in conduct that resulted in reduced competition for ebooks in Canada, in contravention of the country’s Competition Act. The four publishers have signed a consent agreement to remove or amend clauses in their distribution agreements with individual ebook retailers that the bureau believes restrict retail price competition. The full text of the agreement is available here…”

Digital Book World also reports that  “more students are reporting that required course content for college courses is steadily moving away from formal textbooks and toward digital materials, according to the latest Student Attitudes Toward Content in Higher Education study from the Book Industry Study Group.

“Required content as reported by students continues to evolve away from one or more core textbooks toward new digital alternatives,” BISG said in a statement (below).

In some cases, professors are doing away with formalized course materials altogether, with 11% of students reporting this as the case as of October 2013, up from 4% in 2010…”

Elsevierlogo120Citing an Elsevier press release Resource Shelf reports that the academic publisher “is participating in Access to Research – a service to provide the UK public with access to academic research through their local public library.

Access to Research is a … online search tool available to anyone to use at participating public libraries. It has an “intelligent” search interface, allowing users to retrieve relevant search results from across the platforms of many different publishers, thousands of journals, and millions of articles. Once a relevant article is identified, the use can click to the relevant publisher’s platform, where the article is available at no cost to them to their library…”

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