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Weekly News Digest

June 14, 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.

eLife Selects HighWire Platform for New Open Access Journal

eLife, the new funder-researcher collaboration in science communication, has selected HighWire Press as the platform for its new open access journal for life and biomedical science. First announced in summer 2011, eLife is a researcher-led initiative for the best in science and science communication. Backed by the Howard Hughes Medical Institute, the Max Planck Society, and the Wellcome Trust, the initiative’s first aim is to launch an open access journal for outstanding advances in life science and biomedicine, which is also a platform for experimentation and showcasing innovation in research communication.

eLife will take full advantage of HighWire's Open Platform, its strategic consulting services, and community networking opportunities. The powerful technology behind the platform offers eLife the flexibility to use open-source tools such as Drupal to develop the front-end display—to create widgets, mobile versions, interactive commentary, semantic enrichment, and more.

“HighWire’s deployment of open-source technology, commitment to interoperability, and enthusiasm to work with third-party developers gives eLife tremendous opportunities to explore new territory in research communication,” added Ian Mulvany, eLife’s Head of Technology. “We want eLife to become a catalyst for innovation—attracting and facilitating experimentation by the research community.”

Source: eLife

OCLC Names New CEO: Jack Blount

Jack B. Blount, an executive with experience leading several technology organizations in a career spanning 35 years, has been named OCLC President and CEO. Blount was most recently president and CEO of Alpha Bay Corp., a global technologies and services provider. From 2002 to 2005, he was president and CEO of Dynix Corp., a technology-based library services organization acquired by Sirsi in 2005 to form SirsiDynix.

Blount will succeed Jay Jordan, who announced in June 2011 his intention to retire by the end of June 2012. Effective July 1, Blount becomes the fifth president and CEO of OCLC, the worldwide library cooperative founded 45 years ago.

“I look forward to joining the talented staff at OCLC who are dedicated to the vision set forth 45 years ago to further access to the world’s information and reduce costs for libraries,” said Blount. “Social networking, mobile computing, cloud computing, and big data present enormous challenges of cost and complexity to libraries and their communities that can best be simplified, managed and enabled by libraries working together through organizations like OCLC. It will be my mission to continue the vision and leadership that is part of OCLC’s rich history by offering new research and services to help further enhance libraries and librarianship around the world.”

Blount began his career in enterprise systems with IBM more than 35 years ago. Since then, he has held numerous leadership positions with many organizations, including Novell, Borland, and JD Edwards. While at Novell, he expanded international operations, spending 80% of his time in Europe and Japan for several years. Blount, 60, is a graduate of the Southern Methodist University with a degree in Mathematics.

Source: OCLC

***************June 20, 2012 Update from OCLC*****************

Jay Jordan will continue as President and CEO of OCLC

The OCLC Board of Trustees has concluded that rather than moving forward with the appointment of Jack B. Blount as its President and CEO, it is in the best interest of OCLC to have Jay Jordan continue serving in these capacities. Mr. Jordan has agreed to postpone his retirement to continue leading OCLC.

The OCLC Board of Trustees believes Mr. Jordan’s strong track record, his skills as a leader, and his ability to identify and navigate emerging trends, make him uniquely qualified to serve the nearly 72,000 institutions that use OCLC services.

Board Chair Larry Alford said, “The Board of Trustees has complete confidence in the global management team and the 1,250 employees, who are working diligently to serve libraries around the world and fulfill OCLC’s mission and goals.”

Mr. Alford also said, “The Board is committed to an orderly transition of leadership and will be assessing its succession planning process as it moves forward.” 

Mr. Jordan is the fourth president in OCLC’s 43-year history. He came to OCLC after a 24-year career with Information Handling Services (IHS), an international publisher of databases, and prior to joining IHS, Mr. Jordan held positions with the 3M Corporation in Europe and the United States.

OverDrive to Provide Streaming Audiobooks to Libraries and Schools

OverDrive announced that it will update its audiobook download services to include new options for readers to instantly “See Book—Hear Book.” Scheduled for launch later this year, streaming audiobooks will be available on a wide range of internet-connected devices, including smartphones, tablets, and computers. This instant-access technology will eliminate long downloads before listening to popular audiobooks from libraries and schools throughout the OverDrive network. The Listen Now option will complement the download options already in use with the millions of installed OverDrive Media Console apps on Windows, Mac, iPhone, iPad, Android, Windows Phone, and BlackBerry.

OverDrive will demonstrate streaming audiobooks as part of its next-generation platform at the American Library Association's 2012 Annual Conference in Anaheim, Calif., June 21-26, 2012.

OverDrive will incorporate the streaming option into the free OverDrive Media Console apps, enabling readers to access complete audiobooks or to immediately sample excerpts without first downloading the title. This new feature will complement the current download options, which allow readers to transfer titles to a variety of iPod and MP3 audio devices or burn to CD. Streaming audiobooks will add value to every library’s audiobook collection while still enforcing copyright and supporting permitted lending models. Access to each streaming audiobook will expire at the end of the borrowing period.

Streaming audiobook samples will also be available to patrons and students inside the library with the recently announced OverDrive Media Station. OverDrive Media Station enables in-library access to digital content on touchscreen monitors and public internet workstations. To see a preview of OverDrive Media Station, go to

Source: OverDrive

EBSCOís New Medical Ebook Collections

EBSCO Publishing (EBSCO) released three new medical ebook collections featuring Doody’s recommended content. Doody’s is an authoritative medical book review service designed to assist medical libraries and institutions with their purchasing decisions. Librarians can select titles and build a collection to meet their institution’s specific medical research needs.

The new ebook collections revolve around the 2012 Doody’s Core Titles list, published May 1, 2012, and Doody’s Review Service starred reviews. These collections provide medical libraries with convenient ways to begin or expand their ebook collections with current, reputable content from leading publishers. The collections include the Doody’s Core Titles 2012 Featured Collection, the Doody’s 4- and 5- Star Reviewed Titles 2012 Featured Collection, and the Doody’s Core Titles 2012 Essential Purchases Subject Set.

The Doody’s Core Titles 2012 Featured Collection offers a package of front list medical ebooks from the Doody’s Core Titles (DCT) 2012 list. Published annually, the DCT list highlights the best titles from a variety of medical specialties. Core Titles are based on a four-step selection and scoring process from nearly 200 medical librarians and content specialists.

Doody’s Review Service (DRS) uses a vast network of medical librarians and specialists to review new content monthly, rating it on a 5-star scale. The Doody’s 4- and 5- Star Reviewed Titles 2012 Featured Collection contains 4-and 5-star rated titles from the DRS 2012 reviews. It includes some titles from the Doody’s Core Title 2012 list and content will be added throughout the year.

The Doody’s Core Titles 2012 Essential Purchases Subject Set features a selection of front list “essential purchase” titles from DCT 2012 that are crucial for small to medium-sized medical libraries according to Doody’s. Ebook Subject Sets are convenient, prepackaged sets of titles chosen to meet libraries’ needs for new content on popular, in-demand topics. Titles in this Subject Set are not available in any other Subject Set package—current or past.

Source: EBSCO Publishing

ebrary Announces New Android App

Less than 6 months after launching a dedicated iOS app, ebrary, a ProQuest business, announced a new Android app that will be freely available on Google Play this summer. With the increasing popularity of smart phones, tablets, and other devices, researchers will have a more optimized way to discover and use ebooks, online and offline, on any Android device in addition to the iPad, iPhone, and iPod touch.

ebrary’s Android and iOS apps work with ebooks acquired under all of ebrary’s acquisition models including the 75,000 titles available through Academic Complete, the industry’s first and only aggregated ebook subscription to be designated as a CHOICE Outstanding Academic Title. The apps also provide optimized access to local content uploaded by libraries via DASH! (Data Sharing, Fast), a unique feature of Academic Complete and other ebrary products.  

Key features and benefits of ebrary’s apps include the following:

  • Freely available with any ebrary library product
  • Online and offline reading
  • Seamless downloading of full titles
  • Simple and advanced search
  • Multiple navigation controls
  • Table of contents with relevancy rankings
  • Early check-in of ebrary’s ebooks
  • Copy and paste with automatic citation for offline documents
  • User configurable download size warnings
  • Import and use documents from other sources
  • Supports English and Spanish (UI)
  • Optional sign-in with Facebook user name and password

Source: ebrary

Multicultural Books and Videos Becomes SkyRiver Vendor Partner

SkyRiver announced an expansion of the SkyRiver database through a new partnership with Multicultural Books and Videos, Inc., a major library supplier of foreign language materials--particularly titles in non-Roman languages. One of Multicultural’s services is the provision of MARC records with its shipments and, as part of the partnership agreement, Multicultural will directly input MARC metadata into the database using the SkyRiver cataloging client.

Georgia Fujikawa, SkyRiver’s VP for Operations notes that, “with so many libraries building collections for their diverse communities, it is especially important for us to be able to provide high quality MARC records for materials in many languages. And since SkyRiver is Unicode-based, the database delivers and maintains the integrity of the Unicode character set for non-Roman languages such as Punjabi and Gujarati, which present problems for other bibliographic utilities.”

The SkyRiver database now exceeds 40 million records, more than double its original size, including an increasingly high proportion of newly published foreign language titles.

Source: SkyRiver

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