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Weekly News Digest

April 19, 2012 — 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 ITIís Twitter account: @ITINewsBreaks.

CLICK HERE to view more Weekly News Digest items.

New Multimedia Tools Help Museums, Libraries Support 21st Century Skills

The Institute of Museum and Library Services (IMLS) revamped the webpage for its Museums, Libraries, and 21st Century Skills initiative. Museums and libraries visiting the page will now be able to access practitioner videos, a PowerPoint presentation, an updated resource list, and a toolkit that will help them organize 21st-century skills workshops in their communities. These new resources join IMLS’s 2009 report and self-assessment tool already in wide use.

The 21st Century Skills initiative is intended to assist museums and libraries as they leverage their resources to help individuals of all ages acquire such critical skills as critical thinking and problem solving, creativity and innovation, communication, and collaboration. Combining strengths in traditional and digital learning, libraries and museums are well-positioned to build the skills Americans need today.

The Making the Learning Connection Community Workshop Toolkit is based on a series of community workshops conducted by IMLS between June 2010 and May 2011. This toolkit is designed to assist museum and library leaders in planning and executing 21st-century skills workshops in their own communities. It outlines the planning process, provides timelines, sample exercises and agendas, and brief descriptions of the 2010-11 IMLS workshops. Museum and library staff can also use a new 21st Century Skills PowerPoint and an extended bibliography in their presentations and planning.

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. Through grant making, policy development, and research, it helps communities and individuals thrive through broad public access to knowledge, cultural heritage, and lifelong learning.

Source: Institute of Museum and Library Services

EBSCO Publishing Introduces The African American Historical Serials Collection

EBSCO Publishing (EBSCO) announced the release of the latest database in its Historic Digital Archive Collection, The African American Historical Serials Collection. Developed in conjunction with the American Theological Library Association (ATLA), this digital collection includes African-American periodicals, annuals and reports published from 1829-1922, including materials from African-American religious organizations and social service agencies.

The African American Historical Serials Collection was developed as part of an effort to preserve endangered serials related to African-American religious life and culture. Compiled and accessible to researchers in one digital collection, this unique resource of formerly fragmentary, widely dispersed, and endangered materials contain more than 60,000 pages of content from more than 170 unique titles. It documents the history of African-American life and religious culture in America during the 19th and early 20th centuries.

EBSCO provides access via its Digital Archives Viewer. The viewer brings content alive and allows users to explore, manipulate, collect, and export content. The unique functionality of the Digital Archives Viewer enables it to reproduce the best aspects of the physical library research experience while incorporating the advances in modern digital technology.

EBSCO Publishing has continued to significantly increase the number of resources offered in its collection of digital archives. For more information on the complete collection, go to http://www.ebscohost.com/archives.

Source: EBSCO Publishing

Baker & Taylor and Findaway World to Launch Audiobook Platform

Baker & Taylor, a distributor of digital and physical books and entertainment products, and Findaway World, LLC (Findaway), the creators of Playaway, Playaway View, and Catalist Digital, announced plans to launch a robust digital audiobook platform for public libraries and retailers later this year. The partnership leverages Findaway’s extensive digital audiobook catalog and existing Catalist Digital platform with Baker & Taylor’s Axis 360 digital media platform to create a seamless mobile listening experience available for libraries, patrons, and consumers—from audiobook selection to download.

“Our partnership with Baker & Taylor furthers our mission of simplifying access to digital content, and just as importantly, underscores our ongoing commitment to serving public libraries and their changing needs,” said Mitch Kroll, co-founder and CEO of Findaway.

Libraries can look forward to a new alternative in digital content delivery that focuses on ease-of-use, digital and physical collection development, and the ability for administrators to manage digital content at an individual or group level. George Coe, president of Baker & Taylor Library & Education, adds, “The expansion of Axis 360 will provide the strongest digital media platform to libraries worldwide, enabling patrons to consume digital content wherever they are, whenever they want.”

Not only will this partnership directly affect library patrons’ listening experience, it will also provide immediate benefits for the world of retail. David Cully, president of Baker & Taylor Retail Markets and Executive Vice President of Merchandising and Digital Media Services, explains, “This joint venture complements our current eBook offering beautifully. Consumers will now be able to access digital audio content quickly, easily, and effectively on the device of their choice.”

Source: Baker & Taylor and Findaway World 

OAPEN Launches Beta Version of Directory of Open Access Books

OAPEN (Open Access Publishing in European Networks) announced the launch of the beta version of Directory of Open Access Books, a discovery service for peer-reviewed books published under an open access (OA) license. DOAB provides a searchable index to the information about these books, with links to the full texts of the publications at the publisher’s website or repository.

The primary aim of DOAB is to increase discoverability of OA books. Academic publishers are invited to provide the metadata of their OA books to DOAB. These metadata will be harvestable in order to maximize dissemination, visibility, and impact. At the start of the service there were more than 20 publishers participating with about 750 OA books and new publishers and books were to be added in the next few days. Publishers who wish to participate in DOAB can find more information here.

The Directory of Open Access Books is provided by OAPEN Foundation in cooperation with SemperTool. OAPEN Foundation is an international initiative dedicated to Open Access monograph publishing, based at the National Library in The Hague. DOAB was developed in close cooperation with Lars Bjørnshauge and Salam Baker Shanawa (director of SemperTool), who were also responsible for the development of the Directory of Open Access Journals (DOAJ).

DOAB was launched in a beta version to enable feedback from users and to further develop the service. OAPEN hopes to considerably increase the number of publishers and OA books in DOAB in the coming months and thereby create a valuable resource for the scholarly community and interested public. OAPEN is a collaborative initiative to develop and implement a sustainable OA publication model for academic books in the humanities and social sciences.

Source: OAPEN 

World War I Film Footage in Cyberspace

Films about World War 1 that have never been seen outside a cinema or on television are to be made available on the internet for the first time. The European Film Gateway 1914 (EFG1914) plans to digitize up to 650 hours of footage and make it freely accessible via europeana.eu, Europe’s digital library, museum and archive. It will also appear on the film portal www.europeanfilmgateway.eu. The 2-year project was launched during a meeting of more than 40 representatives from 25 partner institutions at the German Film Museum in Frankfurt am Main.

The footage, which includes newsreels, documentary films, and footage as well as fiction films from and about World War I, is being digitized by archives across Europe, including the Imperial War Museum in London—which has one of the largest institutional World War I related collections—along with partners in France, Germany, Austria, Hungary, Serbia, Italy, Belgium, Denmark, Norway, Spain, and the Netherlands.

Project organizers are sharing hundreds of hours of film material and expertise from a number of individual European archives in order to highlight the benefits of film digitization and digital preservation of historical films across the sector.

Source: Europeana

OverDrive to Preview Library Ebook Data at London Book Fair

OverDrive will announce the first of a series of Big Data reports analyzing billions of ebook impressions and other data collected from across its network of 18,000 public and school libraries at the London Book Fair April 16-18, 2012. Data from OverDrive’s global library network to be made available to participating libraries and publishers includes information about ebook and digital audiobook title circulation, book demand and holds, as well as web traffic and general demographics. OverDrive’s data reports were developed in compliance with library privacy policies and do not include any identifying user information.

In March 2012, more than 337,000 visitors a day from 219 countries browsed the OverDrive-hosted “virtual branch” websites of more than 18,000 libraries to search, discover, and sample book content. This resulted in more than 146 million page views for the month, and library visitors stayed on the sites for an average of 9.5 minutes, viewing an average 11.6 pages per visit. Also in March, OverDrive library catalog browsers viewed more than 636 million title cover images.

In light of recent studies reporting on how library ebook lending drives retail sales (including Library Journal “Patron Profiles, October 2011), the ability to understand readers’ browsing and borrowing interests is becoming an important tool for publishers’ and booksellers’ strategies. The impact of libraries on book sales was also reported in the Pew Internet report, “The Rise of e-Reading” (April 4, 2012), which concluded that the majority of readers of ebooks (61%) prefer to purchase their own copies of ebooks books rather than borrow them. The study also contained data showing that librarians and libraries are a prominent source (21%) for owners of ereading devices to get recommendations for reading materials.

OverDrive library data reports will include metrics for titles, authors, series, and promotional campaigns targeting use of the materials in the OverDrive-hosted catalogs. The data initiatives are being developed in consultation with an advisory panel that includes librarians and marketing professionals from libraries in the U.S., Canada, and the U.K. The program complies with library privacy policies and will not disclose any personally identifying user information.

The OverDrive Library eBook Data reports are an extension of the OverDrive WIN initiatives, a suite of features that support a win-win-win relationship between libraries, publishers, and readers. Enhancing virtual library catalogs with Buy It Now, Recommend to Library, and Author Impressions features, OverDrive gives readers powerful new ways to discover new titles and connect with books and authors.

OverDrive provides digital distribution services for more than 18,000 libraries, schools, and retailers worldwide with support for Windows, Mac, iPhone, iPad, Kindle (U.S. only), Sony Reader, NOOK, Android, Windows Phone, and BlackBerry.

To find a library near you, visit http://search.overdrive.com.

Source: OverDrive 



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