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Weekly News Digest

July 12, 2022 — 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.

'Nice White Librarians' by Miss Julie

Children’s librarian Julie, who doesn’t provide her last name, runs the Hi, Miss Julie blog. She writes the following:

Much like neutrality, niceness is a quality that I believe causes more harm than good, in almost every situation, but especially in workplaces, and especially libraries.

Librarianship is rife with nice white lady librarians. They dominate the profession and thereby the professional culture. And boy, few things are more terrible than a nice white lady when it comes to EDI. You see, nice white ladies like to be comfortable, and to dismantle white supremacy you need to realize you don’t have a right to comfort. …

We can’t dance around the topic of racism. We can’t avoid discussing how trans kids and trans people of all ages are under attack. We can’t just get along with bigots. Nice white librarians upheld Jim Crow laws and denied John Lewis a library card. Our system of organization was created by a man so sexist that the organization he founded kicked him out. We need to acknowledge our past failings and vow to do better going forward.

For more information, read the blog post.

'The OCLC v Clarivate Dilemma' by Karen Coyle

Karen Coyle writes the following on her blog, Coyle’s InFormation:

What seems to specifically have OCLC’s dander up is that Ex Libris states that it will allow any and all libraries, not just its Alma customers, to use [its new MetaDoor] service for free. As the service does not yet exist it is unknown how it could affect the library metadata sharing environment. It may succeed, it may fail. If it succeeds, the technology that Ex Libris develops will be a logical next step in bibliographic data sharing, but its effect on OCLC is hard to predict. …

A couple of other things before I look at some specific points in the lawsuit. One is that WorldCat is not the only bibliographic database used for sharing of metadata. Some smaller library companies also have their own shared databases. These are much smaller than WorldCat and the libraries that use them generally are 1) unable to afford OCLC’s member fees and 2) do not have need of the depth or breadth of WorldCat’s bibliographic data. …

And another: we’re slowly moving to a less ‘thing’-based world to a ‘data’-based world. Yes, scholars still need books and journals, but increasingly our information seeking returns tiny bites, not big thoughts. You can rue that, but I think it’s only going to get worse. … Us ‘book people’ are hanging on to a vast repository that is less and less looking forward and more and more becoming dusty and crusty. We don’t want to lose that valuable archive, but it is hard to claim that we are not a fading culture.

For more information, read the blog post.

Technology From SAGE Brings Sciwheel Into the Fold

Technology from SAGE, a division of SAGE, acquired Sciwheel, a tool that helps students and researchers discover, read, annotate, write, and share research. “Sciwheel will be integrated with Technology from SAGE’s Lean Library, to create a comprehensive academic workflow tool,” the press release notes. “Sciwheel includes a web-based application, a browser extension, and add-ins for Google Docs and Microsoft Word to connect resource discovery with academic writing. More than 200 institutions around the globe use its services to provide library patrons with reading, referencing and authorship support. The Sciwheel product and engineering team will join Technology from SAGE.”

For more information, read the press release.

RBmedia Announces Two Acquisitions

RBmedia acquired Upfront Books’ audiobook publishing business, along with its full catalog of titles. “This acquisition supports RBmedia’s continued business growth and expansion initiatives,” says Tom MacIsaac, CEO of RBmedia. “We’re privileged to continue to build upon the Upfront legacy and leverage RBmedia’s powerful global distribution network to get these titles to as many listeners as possible.”

To enter into the French-language audiobook market, in addition to its presence in the English-, Spanish-, and German-language markets, RBmedia acquired Éditions Thélème, a French audiobook publisher. According to the press release, RBmedia “will be home to the existing Éditions Thélème audiobooks catalog and all new French-language titles published by RBmedia in the future. Founded in 1990, Éditions Thélème has specialized in publishing French-language audiobooks in the areas of classic and contemporary literature from past and present authors such as Marcel Proust, Victor Hugo, Plato, Jane Austen, and Emily Bronté.”

For more information, read the Upfront Books press release and the Éditions Thélème press release.

EFF Facilitates Request to Dismiss Internet Archive Lawsuit

The Electronic Frontier Foundation (EFF) announced the following:

The Internet Archive has asked a federal judge to rule in its favor and end a radical lawsuit, filed by four major publishing companies, that aims to criminalize library lending. …

The motion for summary judgment, filed [July 7] in the U.S. District Court for the Southern District of New York by the Electronic Frontier Foundation (EFF) and Durie Tangri LLP, explains that the Archive’s Controlled Digital Lending (CDL) program is a lawful fair use that preserves traditional library lending in the digital world.

The brief explains how the Internet Archive is advancing the purposes of copyright law by furthering public access to knowledge and facilitating the creation of new creative and scholarly works. The Internet Archive’s digital lending hasn’t cost the publishers one penny in revenues; in fact, concrete evidence shows that the Archive’s digital lending does not and will not harm the market for books.

For more information, read the press release.



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