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Weekly News Digest

October 20, 2020 — 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.

COVID-19 NEWS: Cybersecurity Collaborative Offers Funding to Subsidize Membership

Cybersecurity Collaborative and its parent company, CyberRisk Alliance, announced a $1 million fund to help organizations whose cybersecurity resources have been affected by the pandemic join the alliance. It shares the following:

The fund includes a limited number of complimentary memberships for academic and public sector organizations and makes grants available to commercial sector organizations to subsidize 50% of first year membership dues in the Cybersecurity Collaborative. The pandemic has brought new information security threats to organizations of all sizes, at the same time as economic conditions have constrained budgets in technology and cybersecurity areas. The Cyber Resiliency Fund is intended to help companies access immediate cybersecurity resources and tools that address top priorities such as ransomware, phishing and securing work-from-home environments.

“Helping cybersecurity leaders raise the effectiveness of their operations is central to our mission,” says John Whelan, CyberRisk Alliance’s president. “We recognize that it is a difficult time for many organizations to invest in new security resources, so are pleased to offer this fund to make the Collaborative’s important services more accessible.”

To apply for a fund grant (by Dec. 31, 2020), email

For more information, read the press release.

The New York Times: 'U.S. Accuses Google of Illegally Protecting Monopoly'

Cecilia KangDavid McCabe and Daisuke Wakabayashi write the following for The New York Times:

The Justice Department accused Google on [Oct. 20] of illegally protecting its monopoly over search and search advertising, the government’s most significant challenge to a tech company’s market power in a generation and one that could reshape the way consumers use the internet.

In a much-anticipated lawsuit, the agency accused Google of locking up deals with giant partners like Apple and throttling competition through exclusive business contracts and agreements.

Google’s deals with Apple, mobile carriers and other handset makers to make its search engine the default option for users accounted for most of its dominant market share in search, the agency said, a figure that it put at around 80 percent.

‘For many years,’ the agency said in its 57-page complaint, ‘Google has used anticompetitive tactics to maintain and extend its monopolies in the markets for general search services, search advertising and general search text advertising—the cornerstones of its empire.’

The lawsuit, which may stretch on for years, could set off a cascade of other antitrust lawsuits from state attorneys general. …

Google called the suit ‘deeply flawed.’ But the agency’s action signaled a new era for the technology sector. It reflects pent-up and bipartisan frustration toward a handful of companies—Google, Amazon, Apple and Facebook in particular—that have evolved from small and scrappy companies into global powerhouses with outsize influence over commerce, speech, media and advertising. …

A victory for the government could remake one of America’s most recognizable companies and the internet economy that it has helped define since it was founded by two Stanford University graduate students in 1998.

For more information, read the article.

IFLA Signs Documents for Promoting Digital Inclusion and Access

IFLA shared that it is supporting two documents that address the digital divide. The first, Libraries in Response: Every Community Connected, is a call to action for governments to do the following:
  • Ensure that each community has access to at least one publicly-available, adequately connected, no-fee internet access point, and that every school has access to an online or offline library.
  • Mobilize libraries to act as community labs for action research, improving how we connect, protect and respect each other, and work together to achieve the UN Sustainable Development Goals by 2030.
  • Ensure adequate trained staffing and access to equipment for libraries and other community anchor institutions to provide a safe and secure access point to networks, respectful of privacy, and support for digital skills and education throughout life, enabling people to learn, earn and thrive.

The second is IFLA’s Library Pledge on Promoting Digital Inclusion (IFLA encourages others to sign it here), which asserts the following:

  • We pledge to promote the best possible internet access for communities, reliably and at no or low cost, so that no-one should lack connectivity for financial reasons
  • We pledge to promote the widest possible access to relevant digital content and services, supporting education, research, and economic, social and cultural participation
  • We pledge to promote the strongest possible support for the development of digital skills, giving users the ability to be successful and confident internet users
  • We pledge to promote equitable broadband policies at all levels                         

For more information, read the news item.

Kanopy Teams With A+E Networks for Docuseries Content

Kanopy signed an agreement with A+E Networks, which allows Kanopy to offer docuseries from A+E Networks’ content divisions—such as A&E and HISTORY—to its academic and public library customers in the U.S., Canada, the U.K., Australia, and New Zealand. Titles that are currently available include the following:
  • HISTORY’s Roots, the eight-hour series that reimagines the historical portrait of American slavery
  • Presidents at War, stories of war told through the experiences of eight remarkable men who go on to serve as Commanders-In-Chief as U.S. Presidents
  • Washington, the six-hour miniseries explores the full arc of America’s first president
  • A&E Indie Films’ Learning to Skateboard in a Warzone (If You’re a Girl), the Oscar and BAFTA-winning documentary of young Afghan girls learning to read, write—and skateboard—in Kabul

For more information, read the press release.

Wiley Introduces the Open Science Ambassador Program to Support Chinese Researchers

Wiley launched the Open Science Ambassador Program, which “acknowledges and supports Chinese thought leaders around the world who embrace open science principles and encourage a free exchange of ideas and collaboration within their communities.”

“At Wiley, we believe a more open future will accelerate the pace of discovery, which is why we are prioritizing programs like the Open Science Ambassador Program,” says Judy Verses, Wiley’s EVP of research. “The scholarly research community is calling for increased openness and transparency in publishing, and we encourage others to join us in transforming the research publishing industry around the world.” 

Ambassadors come from institutions such as Peking University, the Chinese Academy of Sciences, Tianjin Hospital, the California Institute of Technology’s Jet Propulsion Laboratory, the University of Pittsburgh, Zhejiang University, Huazhong Agricultural University, and the Beijing Institute of Technology.

“Together with the ambassadors, we will not only make research and science more impactful and open in China, but also maximize the global impact of Chinese research,” says Philip Kisray, Wiley’s SVP of international education.

For more information, read the press release.

Springer Nature and Max Planck Digital Library Sign Transformative OA Agreement

Porter Anderson reports the following for Publishing Perspectives:

What’s being called a landmark agreement between Springer Nature and the Max Planck Digital Library is being announced today (October 20) from Springer in London as creating ‘a route to open access’ for Nature research journals.

The agreement newly in place is intended to ‘deliver the first ever transformative agreement for Nature and Nature-branded journals.’ Based in Germany’s Projekt DEAL agreement concluded last January for Springer Nature journals, the commercial framework agreed with Max Planck will now be offered to German institutions, in time for a January 2021 start.

The transformative agreement, planned to run for four years, is meant to ‘enable authors affiliated with participating institutions to publish their research articles accepted for publication in Nature and Nature-branded research journals immediately open access at no cost to them. Participating institutions will also gain read access to the complete Nature portfolio, including Nature Review titles and all forthcoming Nature-branded journals.’

For more information, read the article.

Springshare Introduces Pickup Manager Tool to Simplify Holds Pickups

Springshare rolled out Pickup Manager, which helps libraries “streamline the holds pickup process while adhering to [their] COVID-19 safety guidelines. Patrons can easily request their holds via their ILS, schedule a pickup, and enjoy 2-way SMS/text and chat communication when they’ve arrived.” Springshare explains the process as follows:
  • Patron requests a hold in your ILS. When items are ready, your ILS sends an email with the link to our pickup scheduler.
  • Patron receives email from ILS system with LibCal booking link, they “log in” with their ILS barcode/pin to verify they are who they say they are and then book a spot. …
  • Patron reserves their preferred time & location using LibCal’s easy-to-use booking interface. …
  • ‘Today’s Scheduled Pickups’ on the Dashboard helps you prepare today’s items. 
  • When the patron arrives, they SMS/text you (LibChat coming soon!) with a customized keyword. The Pickup Manager recognizes the patron and alerts you of their hold details so you can easily grab and deliver their items. 
  • If needed, you can communicate back-and-forth with the patron about their pickup via SMS/text (LibChat coming soon!)—all from the Pickup Manager dashboard.
  • When the items are picked up, the Pickup Manager marks them as received by the patronin their ILS record, too.

For more information, read the blog post.

OCLC Gets New Content Partners for WorldCat Discovery

OCLC announced that it “has signed agreements with leading publishers and other content providers around the world to add metadata for high-quality electronic and print books, journals, databases, and other learning materials that will make their content discoverable through WorldCat Discovery.” The agreements include those with the following providers:
  • American Institute of Aeronautics and Astronautics (AIAA), based in Reston, Virginia, USA, is the world’s largest technical society dedicated to the global aerospace profession. The AIAA has nearly 30,000 individual members from 91 countries and 95 corporate members.
  • DIS Magazine, based in New York, New York, USA, is a virtual platform that examines art, fashion, music and culture, constructing and supporting new creative practices.
  • EDP Sciences, based in Les Ulis, France, is dedicated to publishing high-quality research and content in the fields of physics, astrophysics, humanities, mathematics, engineering sciences, life sciences, and medicine. Today, EDP Sciences publishes scientific journals, books and conference proceedings. 
  • Kortext, based in Bournemouth, UK, is a leader in delivering digital content under flexible access models that work for universities and students. Access can be from the library OPAC, through the learning management system, discovery portals or reading lists. 
  • O’Reilly Media, based in Sebastopol, California, USA, delivers highly topical and comprehensive technology and business learning solutions to millions of users across enterprise, consumer, and university channels. 
  • Publications Office of the European Union, based in Luxembourg, is an inter-institutional office whose task is to publish the publications of the institutions of the European Union. 
  • Wolters Kluwer Legal Education, is part of Wolters Kluwer Legal & Regulatory, U.S., a global leader in professional information, software solutions, and services for the healthcare; tax and accounting; governance, risk and compliance; and legal and regulatory sectors. Wolters Kluwer Legal Education helps its customers make critical decisions every day by providing expert solutions that combine deep domain knowledge with advanced technology and services.
  • Yale University Press, based in New Haven, Connecticut, USA, publishes scholarly works from a multitude of disciplines. Its aim is to contribute to global understanding of human affairs and to aid in the discovery and dissemination of light and truth, lux et veritas, which is a central purpose of Yale University.

For more information and the rest of the list of providers, read the press release.

Cambridge University Press Moves Toward More OA

Cambridge University Press announced that it “will request the majority of its journals be given Transformative Journal status by cOAlition S as part of a commitment to transition them to full Open Access.” This means that the share of published OA articles will increase each year until it reaches 75%, at which point, publishing will be fully OA. The organization “also pledge[s] to actively promote the benefits of OA to authors to encourage take-up.”

“While our primary path to a sustainable, open access future continues to be through Read and Publish agreements, the Transformative Journals programme gives a welcome and much-needed opportunity for us to offer a Plan S-compliant publishing route to the many authors not yet covered by such an agreement,” says Matthew Day, Cambridge University Press’ head of open research policy and partnerships.

For more information, read the news item.

New Clarivate Report Explores Research Integrity

Clarivate rolled out a new report, “Research Integrity: Understanding Our Shared Responsibility for a Sustainable Scholarly Ecosystem,” which “exposes the range of tactics used to subvert research integrity, as well as the most susceptible points in the research cycle. It also outlines the shared responsibilities of those involved in the process—including funders, institutions and publishers—emphasizing the crucial role of collaboration and calling for community guidelines around ethics and actions, especially in terms of research assessment and incentivisation. Finally, the report analyzes how the research community can use technology, data, and analytics to uphold the principles of research integrity, highlighting six major areas for improvement.”

The report’s data, from the Web of Science, shows that “deviant publication practices have risen drastically in recent years, with more researchers misrepresenting their work to garner kudos in their field, or simply doing what they feel they must to survive in a ‘publish or perish’ world. However, considering current trends in the scholarly ecosystem, such as increasing transparency through open research and digital transformation and acceleration, the authors highlight an opportunity for clarity and action.”

For more information, read the press release.

Send correspondence concerning the Weekly News Digest to NewsBreaks Editor Brandi Scardilli
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