|Weekly News Digest
July 3, 2014 — In addition to this week's NewsBreak(s), the editors have compiled the Weekly News Digest, featuring stories from the week just past that you should know about. Watch for additional coverage to appear in the next print issue of Information Today.
CLICK HERE to view all of this week's Weekly News Digest items.
GPO Plans to Downsize Workforce
In response to its shift toward digital publishing initiatives, the U.S. Government Printing Office (GPO) announced that it will request the authority to offer buyouts and early outs to its 1,850 employees. The GPO must get approval from Congress and the OPM (Office of Personnel Management) for this proposal, which is designed to eliminate 5% of its workforce (100 employees).
“Unlike most Federal agencies, GPO operates like a business, covering most of its costs through the income we earn for the provision of information products and services,” said public printer Davita E. Vance-Cooks. “As the Government’s publisher, we’re committed to ensuring that our staffing and other requirements match our customers’ needs in this digital age.”
Employees may be offered payments of up to $25,000 to voluntarily leave the GPO. These funds would come from the GPO’s existing budget, so the buyouts/early outs would need to be finalized by the first quarter of fiscal year 2015 in order to achieve the necessary savings.
Source: U.S. Government Printing Office
NISO's Recommended Practices Focus on DDA and Discovery Transparency
NISO (National Information Standards Organization) published two new recommended practices: Demand Driven Acquisition of Monographs and Open Discovery Initiative: Promoting Transparency in Discovery. Both are available for free on NISO’s website.
Demand Driven Acquisition of Monographs is intended for publishers, vendors, aggregators, and libraries that use a demand-driven acquisition (DDA) model. It provides a set of best practices for using DDA with print books and ebooks, including recommendations regarding how to choose DDA program parameters, manage MARC records, and provide long-term access to content not owned by the library. Consortial considerations and cross-aggregator implementations of DDA are also addressed.
Open Discovery Initiative aims to increase transparency across all aspects of indexed discovery services by offering guidelines to discovery service providers on linking practices, supported methods of transfer, usage statistics, and other practices. It also guides content providers on topics such as disclosing their level of participation, the minimum set of metadata elements used for indexing, and technical formats. A set of standard terms and definitions add to the proposed transparency practices.
LexisNexis Provides Audio and Video Legal Sources
LexisNexis agreed to license, promote, and feature Courtroom Connect’s Courtroom View Network (CVN) video and audio content by embedding the materials within its law school ebooks and offering them through the LexisNexis Courtroom Cast academic portal (in addition to the CVN website). This new initiative gives law school students and faculty members a legal learning platform that integrates text, audio, video, and rich media into a searchable database.
CVN offers more than 2,000 audio recordings of judicial opinions, thousands of hours of videos of U.S. legal proceedings, and training videos on 87 topics such as evidence and appellate advocacy.
Taylor & Francis Group Releases OA Survey Results
Taylor & Francis Group published the responses to its 2014 open access (OA) survey, which included questions for researchers about their perceptions of OA, their attitudes toward the practice, and their opinions on the future of research communication.
The survey showed that positive attitudes toward OA increased since last year. Respondents noted that OA offers higher visibility for authors than traditional subscription journals and provides other benefits. However, the largest group of respondents (47%) was unsure about publishing more gold OA articles, and 41% were unsure about publishing more green OA articles. The biggest reported reason for not choosing OA was a “[l]ack of understanding of publishers’ policies on repositories.”
“We clearly have much work left to do in simplifying our policies and documentation so that our author communities are in no doubt as to what their OA options are,” says David Green, Taylor & Francis Group’s global journals publishing director. “We will also continue to inform and work with global research funders and those societies for whom we publish, so that we can continue to improve the services and products that author communities require of a professional research publisher.”
Source: Taylor & Francis Group
Supreme Court Ruling Upholds Individual Privacy
The Supreme Court of the United States released an opinion on Riley v. California and United States v. Wurie in which it decided that law enforcement officers must obtain a warrant before searching the content in an arrested person’s cellphone. Both Riley and Wurie were convicted on charges brought against them after their initial arrests because of information police officers found on their phones. Both men moved to suppress the cellphone evidence and were denied. Now, “Officers may examine the phone’s physical aspects to ensure that it will not be used as a weapon, but the data on the phone can endanger no one.”
The opinion also states the following:
Before cell phones, a search of a person was limited by physical realities and generally constituted only a narrow intrusion on privacy. But cell phones can store millions of pages of text, thousands of pictures, or hundreds of videos. … It is true that this decision will have some impact on the ability of law enforcement to combat crime. But the Court’s holding is not that the information on a cell phone is immune from search; it is that a warrant is generally required before a search.
“These decisions are huge for digital privacy,” says Hanni Fakhoury, the Electronic Frontier Foundation’s (EFF) staff attorney. “This should have implications for other forms of government electronic searches and surveillance, tightening the rules for police behavior and preserving our privacy rights in our increasingly digital world.”
Source: Supreme Court of the United States
Library Crowdfunding Site Offers OA Digital Collections
REVEAL DIGITAL launched Independent Voices, a crowdfunding website for open access (OA) digital collections that introduces four inaugural project concepts. Librarians can visit the site to prioritize and select the digital projects they’d like to see realized, and then track each project as it moves toward its goal. More project concepts will be posted in early July.
“In contrast to mass digitization efforts and commercially driven projects, we are putting complete control of collection creation in the hands of the libraries,” says Jeff Moyer, REVEAL DIGITAL’s founder.
The company’s business model allows the costs associated with producing a collection to define its funding threshold, and the collection becomes OA when that threshold is reached.
Source: REVEAL DIGITAL
SirsiDynix Introduces New BLUEcloud Suite Platform
SirsiDynix launched BLUEcloud Campus, its next-generation library services platform (LSP) for academic, school, and research libraries. Part of the SirsiDynix BLUEcloud Suite of library automation tools, the LSP combines components from SirsiDynix and resource providers such as EBSCO Information Services (EBSCO) to offer content management tools, integration with learning management systems, and content from EBSCO Discovery Service (EDS).
“BLUEcloud Campus leverages the EDS API for mutual customers, providing a powerful and tightly integrated solution,” says Neil Block, EBSCO’s VP of discovery innovation, academic libraries. “The combination of EBSCO content, products, and services with SirsiDynix BLUEcloud modules will provide great value to both staff and end user.”
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