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Weekly News Digest

April 27, 2023 — 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 Podcast Episode From CCC Looks at the State of Journalism

CCC’s Christopher Kenneally writes the following about his newest Velocity of Content podcast episode, “Dollars or Democracy?”: 

Leaving journalism to its fate in the marketplace irresponsibly puts dollars before democracy, says Victor Pickard, co-director of the Media, Inequality and Change Center at the Annenberg School for Communication at the University of Pennsylvania. Prof. Pickard, author of Democracy Without Journalism?: Confronting the Misinformation Society, asserts that the traditional reliance of media on advertising revenue is a broken business model that needs a re-boot.

‘I think the current problem that NPR, public media, and indeed our entire media system is facing at the moment gives us an opportunity to think about what our media should be doing in a democratic society,’ he tells me.

For more information, read the blog post.

Kudos Introduces a Premium Product Suite for Enhanced Showcases

Kudos launched a premium product suite featuring state-of-the-art Showcases for research that is in various stages: before, during, or after publication. They use multimedia and other outputs to tell Stories that increase the audience and impact of research; there are also communications-planning and impact-logging tools. The products are designed for individual researchers, groups, departments, and institutions.

See an example of a basic versus premium individual Showcase at

For more information, read the blog post/press release.

ALA Publishes Content for National Library Week

It’s National Library Week, and ALA released its Top 10 Most Challenged Books of 2022 list (actually, Top 13 this year) and its 2023 State of America’s Libraries Report, “which tells the story of how libraries are innovating and adapting to improve the well-being of their communities in the midst of censorship challenges.”

ALA shares, “In 2022, ALA tracked the highest number of censorship reports since the association began compiling data about library censorship more than 20 years ago. ALA’s Office for Intellectual Freedom tracked 2,571 unique titles targeted for censorship, a 38% increase from the 1,858 unique titles targeted in 2021. Most of the targeted books were written by or about members of the LGBTQIA+ community and people of color.”

For more information, read the press release.

Class Online Learning Company Plans ChatGPT-Based Teaching Assistant

Class, a provider of learning sessions for virtual K−12 education, will release the A.I. Teaching Assistant, which will be powered by ChatGPT. It will help students do the following after a Class session:
  • Ask questions and receive immediate, relevant answers based on what was taught in class.
  • Highlight the transcript of the spoken text and have the A.I. describe the highlighted portion to the student in additional detail.
  • Create a “study guide” during or after the live Class that can supplement notes and materials created by the instructor or learner.

The A.I. Teaching Assistant will be released in beta later in 2023. Instructors will be able to turn access to it on or off.

For more information, read the press release.

HarperCollins Books Come to the OverDrive Max Access Model

OverDrive has made more than 400,000 ebook and e-audiobook titles available in its Marketplace via the OverDrive Max access model, which allows libraries to buy bundles of 100 loans for specific titles that can be lent with flexibility for concurrent use based on demand for them and with no expiration date. Launched in 2020, it features titles from ABRAMS, BOOM! Studios, independent publishers working with IPG, and more. It is one of OverDrive’s six available access models and is its fastest-growing option. In April 2023, OverDrive launched a 6-month OverDrive Max pilot of 150-plus HarperCollins titles for both children and adults.

For more information, read the blog post/press release.

SAGE Report Studies Librarian and Student Perspectives on Undergraduate Research

Technology From SAGE shared the results of a survey of nearly 600 students in the U.S., the U.K., and Canada in a new report, “The Knowledge Gap Between Librarians and Students: Contrasting Librarian and Student Perspectives on the Undergraduate Workflow” (registration required). It “sheds light on challenges in the librarian-patron relationship, including the need for greater digital literacy and more tailored support for students, and recommends methods to support the student experience.”

Findings include the following:

  • 35 percent of students have used the library website.
  • 63 percent use Google to conduct research while 10 percent try the library first.
  • Only 27 percent have entered the library building itself.

For more information, read the press release.

OCLC Dives Into Research About Low Morale in Libraries

OCLC’s WebJunction is promoting an upcoming webinar with information about low morale in libraries. It shares the following:

Since 2017, Kaetrena Davis Kendrick has been researching the low-morale experiences among library workers. In her research, she has identified workplace factors and events that trigger low morale, the effects of low morale on physical and emotional health, how library staff respond to low-morale experiences, and the systems and structures that enable and perpetuate these factors. WebJunction recognizes the significance of Kendrick’s research and is committed to helping to center this learning and conversation in the field. We learned more about her impactful research in [a] short interview, in which she discusses the key low-morale themes and factors that surface across various types of organizations and roles. And we invite all to attend … Low Morale in Libraries: Impacts and Countermeasures, on June 29, 2023. …

For more information, read the news item.

JSTOR Begins a Path to Open Pilot With the Big Ten Academic Alliance

JSTOR signed a multiyear pilot agreement with the research libraries of the Big Ten Academic Alliance (BTAA) to allow BTAA to become part of Path to Open, JSTOR’s sustainable publishing model for frontlist university press monographs. Path to Open libraries have unlimited, DRM-free access to titles, and then JSTOR makes them OA after 3 years. An initial set of 100 books will be released in fall 2023, and an additional 300 titles will be published annually during the pilot, which lasts until 2026.  

For more information, read the news item.

CCC Unveils New Report on the State of Scholarly Metadata

CCC published “The State of Scholarly Metadata: 2023.” This visual report was conducted in collaboration with Media Growth Strategies, and it “depicts the complexities and value of metadata throughout the scholarly research lifecycle. The findings draw on dozens of research interviews about the significant economic and social impact that a fragmented metadata supply chain has today on researchers, institutions, funders, and publishers—particularly in the transition to OA.”

For more information, read the press release and visit the report’s site.

OpenAI Plans Subscription Version of ChatGPT

Kyle Wiggers writes the following in “OpenAI Previews Business Plan for ChatGPT, Launches New Privacy Controls” for TechCrunch:

OpenAI says that it plans to introduce a new subscription tier for ChatGPT, its viral AI-powered chatbot, tailored to the needs of enterprise customers.

Called ChatGPT Business, OpenAI describes the forthcoming offering as ‘for professionals who need more control over their data as well as enterprises seeking to manage their end users.’ …

Despite controversy and several bans, ChatGPT has proven to be a publicity win for OpenAI, attracting major media attention and spawning countless memes on social media. But it’s a pricey service to run. 

For more information, read the article.

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