|Weekly News Digest
September 14, 2009 — In addition to this week's NewsBreaks article and the monthly NewsLink Spotlight, Information Today, Inc. (ITI) offers Weekly News Digests that feature recent product news and company announcements. Watch for additional coverage to appear in the next print issue of Information Today. For other up-to-the-minute news, check out ITI’s Twitter account: @ITINewsBreaks.
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Private Equity Firm Acquires National Archive Publishing Co.
Superior Capital Partners, LLC (www.superiorfund.com), a Detroit-based private equity firm, announced that it has formed NAPC Holdings, LLC, an investment platform that was created to acquire the assets of Ann Arbor, Michigan-based National Archive Publishing Co. (NAPC; www.napubco.com) in a secured party sale. NAPC Holdings will operate the business through two new subsidiaries, XanEdu Publishing, Inc. and NA Publishing, Inc. The purchase price was not disclosed.
XanEdu Publishing, Inc. is a publisher of customized educational coursepacks for the higher education market. XanEdu provides its university customer base with a trusted source for copyright clearance and innovative hosting and delivery capabilities. XanEdu's technology-based approach to coursepack compilation and delivery has accelerated the adoption of participant-centered, interactive learning in many leading universities. XanEdu's customer base includes 75% of the top 50 business schools in the country.
NA Publishing, Inc. provides microform archiving of periodicals and journals for the library, higher education, and healthcare markets. NA Publishing's Periodicals in Microform program comprises an historical archive of journals and magazines, with more than 20,000 titles available in multiple archive quality formats.
The strategy of Superior is to combine capital, transaction experience, and operational improvement expertise with proven management teams who have the vision, capability, and commitment to successfully improve and grow their businesses. Superior seeks to acquire or recapitalize niche manufacturers, value-added distributors, and specialty service companies. Generally, these companies will have annual revenues of $30-$150 million, hold strong market positions, and have identifiable growth opportunities.
NAPC was formed in 2005 by prior members of the ProQuest management team (http://newsbreaks.infotoday.com/NewsBreaks/ProQuest-Sells-Periodical-Microfilm-and-Coursepack-Businesses-to-Newly-Formed-Company-16086.asp). In mid-2009, ProQuest bought back the microfilming assets from NAPC (http://newsbreaks.infotoday.com/Digest/ProQuest-Buys-Back-NAPC-Microfilming-Assets-54993.asp).
Source: Superior Capital Partners, LLC
The Wall Street Journal Digital Network to Launch Daily Online News Broadcast
The Wall Street Journal Digital Network announced plans to launch The News Hub-a live, daily online news broadcast featuring true collaboration and expert reporting and analysis presented by The Wall Street Journal, Barron's, Dow Jones Newswires, MarketWatch.com, and AllThingsD.com.
Beginning Thursday, Sept. 17, The News Hub will air weekdays at 8:30 a.m. and 4 p.m. ET live from the company's newsroom "hub" in New York, where editors from across Dow Jones work together to coordinate news coverage for the various properties. The broadcast will be available on WSJ.com, Barrons.com, MarketWatch.com as well as Dow Jones Newswires and will be hosted by and feature Dow Jones' own reporters and editors along with special guests from myriad industries. The News Hub will be available on-demand following the live broadcasts.
The New Hub's daily, 8-minute broadcasts will look at the most important news of the day, taking users behind the headlines impacting the markets and economy. The morning broadcast will be hosted by Kelly Evans, economic reporter for The Wall Street Journal, and will focus on the key developments breaking and influencing the economic news of the day, while the afternoon show, co-hosted by Dow Jones Newswires columnist Simon Constable and Kelsey Hubbard of WSJ.com, will air as markets close to examine what happened and what those developments mean.
"The News Hub will launch on our new video player, which incorporates the latest in search and navigation technologies and best practices in the surfacing of related content," said Gordon McLeod, president of The Wall Street Journal Digital Network. "By simultaneously airing The News Hub live across our sites, we are also creating original and exciting new video advertising and sponsorship opportunities for our clients."
Source: Dow Jones & Co. (www.dowjones.com)
IMLS Grant Will Help Libraries Help the Unemployed
Job seekers have packed libraries around the country during recent months, searching online job sites, building resumes, taking interview classes, and making use of a wide range of other employment services and resources. More help is on the way. Through a grant from the Institute of Museum and Library Services (IMLS; www.imls.gov), WebJunction (www.webjunction.org), the online learning community for library staff created by OCLC, and the State Library of North Carolina have launched a 1-year initiative to gather and share best practices for providing library-based employment services and programs to the unemployed.
The partners will develop and host an online training module-available to everyone-that adapts the workshop curriculum and experience. A core feature of the program will be online conversations at WebJunction.org for state library administrators to explore new ideas for supporting local public library staff to deliver work force services. All regional workshops and the online training module will be supported by follow-on programming. This will provide participants with the resources and support they need to assist local public libraries as they respond to urgent patron demands.
Project goals include dissemination of services, programs, and partnerships to support the unemployed; greater capacity in state library agencies to support their local public libraries; and broader understanding and support outside the library field for the work force development role that libraries have in responding to the crisis.
The Institute of Museum and Library Services is the primary source of federal support for the nation's 123,000 libraries and 17,500 museums. The institute's mission is to create strong libraries and museums that connect people to information and ideas.
Since 2003, WebJunction has helped more nearly 50,000 library staff build their job skills by partnering with state library agencies and other library service organizations to deliver cost-effective staff training and development programs. WebJunction's vision is to be the place where the worldwide library profession gathers to build the knowledge, skills, and support it needs to power relevant, vibrant libraries. WebJunction is supported in part by OCLC, grants from the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation and the Institute of Museum and Library Services, and the library community.
Thomson Reuters Launches Century of Social Sciences
Thomson Reuters (www.thomsonreuters.com) has announced the launch of Century of Social Sciences, a unique set of backfiles covering groundbreaking research in the social sciences dating from 1900. Century of Social Sciences expands the coverage of Web of Science, available on the ISI Web of Knowledge platform.
Culled from more than 300 prestigious journals, information dating from 1900 is now available to researchers, faculty, authors, and students, allowing them to track research trends, authors, and articles over the entire century and to identify seminal studies that form the basis for today's research.
These social science journals represent a collection of the oldest and most prestigious sources in their respective fields. Full bibliographic and cited reference data is available in disciplines such as communication, education, geography, history, law, political science, and public health. Century of Social Sciences also features extensive coverage of high-impact psychology journals, including key titles associated with Sigmund Freud.
More information is available at http://isiwebofknowledge.com/products_tools/backfiles/coss.
Source: Thomson Reuters
OCLC Convenes Council to Develop New WorldCat Record Use Policy
The OCLC board of trustees has convened a council to study and develop a new WorldCat Record Use Policy to replace the guidelines dating from 1987. A proposed policy had drawn a firestorm of criticism, and it was withdrawn following a review board recommendation.
The intent is to recommend to the OCLC board of trustees a new policy that is aligned with the present and future information landscape. The new policy will replace the Guidelines for the Use and Transfer of OCLC-Derived Records that was developed in 1987.
The formation of this council was one of the recommendations contained in the final report (www.oclc.org/us/en/worldcat/catalog/finalreport_reviewboard.pdf) of the OCLC Review Board on the Principles of Shared Data Creation and Stewardship formed in January 2009 to represent the membership and to inform OCLC on best practices for sharing library data. The policy council is also charged with carrying out the other recommendations contained in the final report, including development of a policy to enable expanding the role and value of WorldCat in the broad information ecosystem.
Over the course of the next 7 months, the record use policy council will:
- Review key values and principles underlying the current guidelines developed in 1987
- Develop success criteria for a revised policy or guidelines
- Conduct and disseminate the results of an environmental scan of data-sharing policies
- Evaluate findings from the environmental scan and draft a new policy and recommendations for implementation
- Develop a formal, transparent, and well-managed process for vetting the new draft policy with the OCLC regional councils and the OCLC global council as the representatives of the OCLC membership.
The record use policy council will begin its work soon. The group will define an approach and timeline to carry out this important charge. The council will submit a new draft policy and recommendations for implementation to the chair of the OCLC board of trustees and OCLC president and CEO, for review and approval by the OCLC board of trustees in midyear 2010.
House Committee Holds Hearing on ‘Competition and Commerce in Digital Books’
The U.S. House of Representatives Committee on the Judiciary held a hearing on Sept. 10 on the topic of "Competition and Commerce in Digital Books." It drew considerable media interest, as the list of witnesses included representatives from Google, Amazon.com, The Author's Guild, the Copyright Office, and more. The prepared testimony for each of the witnesses is available for download at http://judiciary.house.gov/hearings/hear_090910.html.
The testimony of Marybeth Peters, U.S. Register of Copyrights (http://judiciary.house.gov/hearings/pdf/Peters090910.pdf), was noteworthy for being her first detailed comments on the controversial Google Book Search settlement, which she says is "fundamentally at odds with the law." Summing up her observations and concerns, she says, "[I]t is our view that the proposed settlement inappropriately creates something similar to a compulsory license for works, unfairly alters the property interests of millions of rights holders of out-of-print works without any Congressional oversight, and has the capacity to create diplomatic stress for the United States."
David Drummond, Google's chief legal officer, drew considerable interest with his offer to allow its rivals to become resellers of the books covered by the settlement. As reported by a number of media and on the Google Public Policy Blog (http://googlepublicpolicy.blogspot.com/2009/09/congress-examines-future-of-digital.html), he announced, "Google will host the digital books online, and retailers such as Amazon, Barnes & Noble or your local bookstore will be able to sell access to users on any internet-connected device they choose."
For an extensive summary and links to media coverage of the hearing, see the post by Gary Price on ResourceShelf: www.resourceshelf.com/2009/09/10/now-online-prepared-testimony-and-news-from-todays-house-hearing-on-competition-and-commerce-in-digital-books.
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