SCHOLARLY COMMUNICATION ISSUES

A NEWSLETTER FOR THE UIUC COMMUNITY

                                                                             Issue 13/05              

                                                                        September 29, 2005

Paula Kaufman, University Librarian, Editor

 

You can now keep current with our new Issues in Scholarly Communication blog at http://www.library.uiuc.edu/blog/scholcomm/.  It’s also available through an RSS feed.  While you’re there, check out our new Scholarly Communication website, which has links to many issues core to understanding and shaping our systems of scholarly communications.  http://www.library.uiuc.edu/scholcomm/issues.htm  If you have suggestions for these new services, contact Katie Clark (florador@uiuc.edu) or me (ptk@uiuc.edu).  We hope to keep you informed and up-to-date.

 

Nearly One in Three Web Users Visit Newspaper Sites - Report

Online newspaper readership continued to climb in the second quarter of 2005, reaching a peak audience of 43.7 million unique visitors during the month of May, representing nearly 30 percent of all adults online in that period—the highest monthly total in 18 months of tracking. For the second quarter, the audience of online newspapers represented a reach of nearly 29 percent, an increase of 0.15 percent over the previous quarter and a 2 percent rise over the same quarter in 2004, according to a Nielsen//NetRatings report for NAA. Compared with May, page views per person were up, averaging more than 40 for the quarter, the average monthly time spent per person averaged greater than 37 minutes.  For comparison’s sake, “current events and global news” from NetRatings’ “News and Information” category averaged more than 79 minutes and 14 visits per person. Such news consumption fell behind only online gaming, stock trading and e-mail as the most engaging activity for Internet users. The Digital Edge, August 2005.  http://www.digitaledge.org/digArtPage.cfm?AID=7141

         

Convergence Continues: Amazon to Publish Short Stories Electronically

Amazon is publishing short stories under the name Amazon Shorts, author John Scalzi reports. Readers pay 50 cents and get to download a short story that, in the words of Amazon, is “yours forever after purchase; save or print and read at your convenience.” There are short stories on offer in the categories Biography & Memoirs, Literature & Fiction, Mystery & Thrillers, Nonfiction, Science, and Science Fiction & Fantasy.  Teleread: Bring the E-Books Home, 8/23/05  http://www.teleread.org/blog/?p=3456

 

Will Google Print and Keyword Searching Eliminate the Need for LC Cataloging and Classification?

According to Thomas Mann, a Reference Librarian in the Main Reading Room of the Library of Congress, the answer is no. The program’s limitations make cataloging and classification even more important to researchers. Mann says that Google Print and keyword search mechanism, backed by the display of results in relevance ranked order, are designed and optimized for quick information seeking rather than scholarship. They do not provide scholars with the structured menus of research options needed for overview perspectives of the book literature on their topics. Searching by keywords is not the same as searching by conceptual categories. Keyword searching does not map the taxonomies that alert researchers to unanticipated aspects of their subjects. It fails to retrieve literature that uses keywords other than those specified by the researcher, he says, missing not only synonyms and variant phrases but also relevant works in foreign languages. Cataloging and classification do provide the recognition mechanisms that scholarship requires for systematic literature retrieval in book collections. OCLC ABSTRACTS - August 29, 2005 (Vol. 8, Issue 35) http://www.guild2910.org/searching.htm

 
NSF Gives Peek at Plans to Overhaul Internet

The National Science Foundation (NSF) has given a glimpse of a proposed initiative to redesign the Internet. Though short on details and currently without funding, the project, called the Global Environment for Networking Investigations, is intended to take a clean-slate approach to designing a new Internet, one that addresses some of the major shortcomings of the current Internet, including security and the growing numbers of individual devices that connect to the network.  Increasing transfer speeds is not one of the project's goals. Leonard Kleinrock, computer scientist at UCLA and one of the developers of Arpanet, precursor to the current Internet, noted that early developers of the Internet did not anticipate its current reach and had no reason to include security as a primary concern. In addition, the network was not designed to accommodate the vast numbers of mobile and wireless devices, as well as remote sensors that now vie for Internet space.  The NSF is seeking participation from other government agencies and from other countries for the project. New York Times, 29 August 2005 (registration req'd) Edupage, August 29, 2005 http://www.nytimes.com/2005/08/29/technology/29internet.html

 

FBI Used PATRIOT Act's Administrative Subpoena to Get Library Records in Connecticut

Yesterday the ACLU revealed that the FBI has used Section 505 of the USA PATRIOT Act to obtain electronic library records at an institution in Connecticut whose identity cannot be disclosed because of constraints imposed by the PATRIOT Act. This is the further evidence that the FBI is indeed using provisions of the USA PATRIOT Act to obtain library patron reading records, an activity the American Library Association (ALA) has fought since the passage of the legislation in 2001. ALA has argued that Section 505 of the USA PATRIOT Act gives the FBI overly broad authority to use a National Security Letter (NSL), an administrative subpoena which requires no judicial oversight, to secretly obtain the electronic library records of any person—whether or not that person is suspected of a crime—without any standard for protecting individual privacy.  Records searched could include all the websites visited and all the e-mail sent and received by anyone who used the library's computers. Such open-ended fishing expeditions expose all library users to the search and seizure of their records and to the invasion of their privacy. A gag order accompanies the NSL that prevents its recipient from disclosing that a demand for records has been received.  ALA Washington Office Newsline 8/26/05 

 

ALA Releases Full Report on Law Enforcement Activity in Libraries

The American Library Association has released the full report of its survey measuring law enforcement activity in America's libraries. Preliminary findings, released in June, revealed that at least 137 legally executed requests by federal and state/local law enforcement in both academic and public libraries have taken place since October, 2001—63 legally executed requests for records in public libraries and 74 such requests in academic libraries. The full report of survey findings includes contextual data including responses to interviews and an appendix containing the survey instrument. Researchers developed a representative sample of more than 1,500 public libraries, of which 33 percent responded to the survey. Of the 4,008 academic libraries invited to participate in the survey, 23 percent responded. The project was funded with support from the John L. and James S. Knight Foundation, the Carnegie Corporation of New York and the Ford Foundation.   ALA Washington Office Newsline 8/26/05 http://www.ala.org/oitp.

 

PLoS Clinical Trials          

PLoS Clinical Trials is an international peer-reviewed open-access journal that will publish results of Phase III and late Phase II human clinical trials from all medical and public health disciplines. The journal's main aim is to increase the breadth of clinical trials reporting and thus ensure that all trials on human participants can be reported in the peer-reviewed literature. PLoS Clinical Trials will provide an open-access venue in which all trials, including "negative" ones, which have been conducted ethically, reported appropriately, and registered in an internationally accepted registry, can be published swiftly and in a structured format. Submitted manuscripts will undergo rigorous peer review including statistical review and a summary of the reviews will be published as an integral part of each article." PLoS Clinical Trials will launch in late 2005; full text of articles will be deposited in PubMed Central from day one....All trials submitted to PLoS Clinical Trials must have been registered with an internationally recognized registry - such as Current Controlled Trials or ClinicalTrials.gov. The trial must have been conducted according to the Helsinki guidelines on human research and must be reported according to the CONSORT criteria. Before submitting a trial please contact our editorial staff to discuss submission of trials.  Open Access News 8/30/05 http://clinicaltrials.plosjournals.org/

   

Google Extends Book Scanning Operation

Google isn't backing down from its plan to scan every book in the world. On Tuesday, the search goliath rolled out stand-alone book search services in 14 countries. The same day, the Text and Academic Authors Association (TAA) became the latest publishers' organization to call Google's opt-out strategy backwards. The international book search services let users in the UK, Australia, Canada, India, New Zealand, Ireland, South Africa, Pakistan, American Samoa, Trinidad and Tobago, Kenya, Jamaica, Mauritius and Uganda search English-language books via keyword, then read passages from the books where those words appear. As in the United States, searchers can search only books via domain-specific search services similar to print.google.com; results from books also may appear at the top of regular Web search results in their countries' versions of Google.com. In either case, the book search results will include links to online retailers to allow searchers to buy the books. However, the indexes of books may differ from country to country, in order to comply with local copyright laws, according to Jim Gerber, Google's director of content partnerships.  InternetNews.com 8/31/05 http://www.internetnews.com/xSP/article.php/3531221

 

Digital American Literature

Recent years have seen a blossoming of innovation by digital humanists. In a new report from CLIR and DLF titled "A Kaleidoscope of Digital American Literature," author Martha Brogan describes achievements in digital American literature and explores priorities and concerns of digital practitioners in the field. Written with the help of Daphnée Rentfrow, the publication is based on a preliminary report prepared for The Andrew W. Mellon Foundation in 2004. The bulk of the 176-page report consists of an extensive overview of selected Web-based resources in six categories: quality-controlled subject gateways, author studies, e-book collections and alternative publishing models, reference resources and full-text primary-source collections, “collections by design,” and teaching applications. CLIR E-Bulletin 21A pdf version of the report is available at       

http://www.clir.org/pubs/abstract/pub132abst.html

 

In Unsealed Legal Papers, Librarian Speaks of Fear of Imprisonment Over Government Gag in Patriot Act Challenge

In previously sealed legal papers made public today by the American Civil Liberties Union, an unnamed librarian expressed fears of imprisonment if he were to violate a gag order in a challenge to a controversial Patriot Act power used by the FBI to demand library records…. The ACLU has created a special Web page on its National Security Letter litigation, which includes links to legal papers, online at www.aclu.org/nsl. The affidavit of the librarian who works for the ACLU's Doe client is available online at http://www.aclu.org/SafeandFree/SafeandFree.cfm?ID=19015&c=262. The affidavit of another individual who represents the ACLU's Doe client is available online at: http://www.aclu.org/SafeandFree/SafeandFree.cfm?ID=19017&c=262.  The affidavit of ACLU Executive Director Anthony D. Romero is available online at: http://www.aclu.org/SafeandFree/SafeandFree.cfm?ID=19020&c=262.  The redacted version of the ACLU's request for a Preliminary Injunction is available online at: http://www.aclu.org/SafeandFree/SafeandFree.cfm?ID=19024&c=262.  The transcript of the hearing is available online at: http://www.aclu.org/SafeandFree/SafeandFree.cfm?ID=19027&c=262. American Civil Liberties Union 9/1/05 http://www.aclu.org/SafeandFree/SafeandFree.cfm?ID=19025&c=262

 

A Copyright Analysis of the Google Print Project        

Jonathan Band, a leading IP lawyer, has written an interesting copyright analysis of the Google Print project. Band concludes that the project is similar to the everyday activities of Internet search engines that is covered by the fair use doctrine.  BNA's Internet Law News (ILN) - 9/7/2005

http://www.policybandwidth.com/doc/googleprint.pdf    

 

Lancet Calls for Publisher to Cut Ties with International Arms Trade
Editors of the Lancet, one of the world's foremost medical journals, have demanded that its corporate owner stop promoting the international arms trade.  The journal's publisher is Reed Elsevier, the multinational behind an arms fair opening in
London next week. The company is one of the world's biggest medical publishers and the owner of Spearhead, which organises some of the world's biggest arms exhibitions. BookTrade.Info 9/9/05  The Guardian 9/9/05  http://tinyurl.com/d4dw8

 

Organization That Received Patriot Act Letter May Identify Itself in Public, Judge Rules

A Connecticut organization that received an order from the Federal Bureau of Investigation to turn over the records of library patrons should be allowed to identify itself publicly, a federal judge ruled on Friday. The FBI issued the order under a provision of the USA Patriot Act, a controversial law intended to help prevent domestic terrorism.  Despite Friday's ruling, the name of the Connecticut organization may not be known until next week at the earliest. The judge hearing the official's challenge to the act, Janet C. Hall of the U.S. District Court in Bridgeport, Conn., has given the government an opportunity to appeal her decision to the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Second Circuit, which government officials have indicated they will do. If the appeals court does not overturn Judge Hall's ruling by September 20, the organization can be identified. Court papers refer to the organization only as "John Doe." The documents also show that the organization is an active member of the American Library Association and the Connecticut Library Association. The order that the Connecticut group received is called a national-security letter and is similar to a subpoena. It allows the FBI to demand that libraries, businesses, colleges, and "electronic service providers" hand over the records of their clients. Recipients of the letters are not allowed to tell anyone about them. The American Civil Liberties Union, which is representing the Connecticut organization, has challenged the constitutionality of the letter the group received, arguing that the government has not demonstrated a compelling need for the library records and that the order prevents the organization from speaking freely about the Patriot Act.  Chronicle of Higher Education 9/12/05 http://chronicle.com/daily/2005/09/2005091201t.htm

 

Peer-Review Researchers Explore Hyped Conclusions, Open Access, and Bias

Several presentations suggesting improvements in peer review and publishing were given recently at the Fifth International Congress on Peer Review and Biomedical Publication.  One group of researchers reported that industry financing of certain medical review papers is associated with hyped conclusions. Other presentations included a small journal's experience that supports the claims of open-access advocates, and data suggesting that hiding authors' identities can reduce bias in peer review of their submissions. Chronicle of higher Education 9/19/05 http://chronicle.com/daily/2005/09/2005091905n.htm

 

Authors Group Sues Google

The Authors Guild on Wednesday announced a federal class action lawsuit against Google over the Google Library Project. The project involves an effort to digitize the holdings of key university libraries, and make those holdings searchable. While Google has said that the effort will expand access to knowledge, the authors’ group charged that the program amounts to “massive copyright infringement” because authors have not given permission to have their work reproduced. Authors Guild 9/20/05 http://www.authorsguild.org/news/sues_google_citing.htm  Inside Higher Education 9/21/05 http://insidehighered.com/news/2005/09/21/qt

 

Google Print and the Authors Guild: A Googler Responds

Posted by Susan Wojcicki, Vice President, Product Management

Today we learned that the Authors Guild filed a lawsuit to try to stop Google Print. We regret that this group chose to sue us over a program that will make millions of books more discoverable to the world—especially since any copyright holder can exclude their books from the program. What’s more, many of Google Print’s chief beneficiaries will be authors whose backlist, out of print and lightly marketed new titles will be suggested to countless readers who wouldn’t have found them otherwise.  Let's be clear: Google doesn’t show even a single page to users who find copyrighted books through this program (unless the copyright holder gives us permission to show more). At most we show only a brief snippet of text where their search term appears, along with basic bibliographic information and several links to online booksellers and libraries. Here’s what an in-copyright book scanned from a library looks like on Google Print:



Google respects copyright. The use we make of all the books we scan through the Library Project is fully consistent with both the fair use doctrine under U.S. copyright law and the principles underlying copyright law itself, which allow everything from parodies to excerpts in book reviews. (Here's an article http://www.denistn.mine.nu/pdf2html.php?url=http://www.policybandwidth.com/doc/googleprint.pdf by one of the many legal scholars who have weighed in on Google Print.)  Just as Google helps you find sites you might not have found any other way by indexing the full text of web pages, Google Print, like an electronic card catalog, indexes book content to help users find, and perhaps buy, books. This ability to introduce millions of users to millions of titles can only expand the market for authors’ books, which is precisely what copyright law is intended to foster. 
Google Blog 9/20/05  http://googleblog.blogspot.com/2005/09/google-print-and-authors-guild.html

 

Camera Phones will be High-Precision Scanners

New software, developed by NEC and the Nara Institute of Science and Technology (NAIST) in Japan, goes further than existing cell phone camera technology by allowing entire documents to be scanned simply by sweeping the phone across the page. Commuters in Japan already anger bookstore owners and newsagents by using existing cell phone software to try to take snapshots of newspaper and magazine articles to finish reading on the train to work. This is only possible because some phones now offer very rudimentary optical character recognition (OCR) software which allows small amounts of text to be captured and digitized from images. But with the new software entire documents can be captured. As a page is being scanned the OCR software takes dozens of still images of the page and effectively merges them together using the outline of the page as a reference guide. The software can also detect the curvature of the page and correct any distortion so caused, enabling even the areas near the binding to be scanned clearly.  New Scientist 9/14/05 http://www.newscientist.com/article.ns?id=dn7998&feedId=online-news_rss20

 

Broadband Adoption in the United States: Growing but Slowing

This new report from the Pew Internet & American life Project argues that, while broadband adoption has grown quickly in recent years, there are reasons to believe that it is slowing. The report develops a model of broadband adoption that hypothesizes that the intensity of online use is the critical variable in understanding the home high-speed adoption decision and the trajectory of the adoption curve. Using national survey data from 2002 and 2005, the paper shows that the role of online experience in explaining intensity of internet use has vanished over this time frame; the explanatory effect of having a broadband connection has grown. This suggests that relative to 2002 there is not much pent-up demand for high-speed internet use at home.  Pew Internet & American Life Project 9/21/05  http://www.pewinternet.org/PPF/r/164/report_display.asp

 

University of Michigan Statement on Google Library Project

Statement from James Hilton, University of Michigan associate provost and interim librarian, regarding the lawsuit against the Google library project: "This project represents an enormous leap forward in the public's ability to search and find knowledge. Throughout history, enormous breakthroughs in technology have always created challenges, but we cannot lose sight of the tremendous benefits this project will bring for society. "The Google library project will transform the way we do research and scholarship. For the first time, everyone will be able to search the written record of human knowledge. It also allows libraries to create a digital archive that preserves this material for all time. Only libraries are tasked by the public with the responsibility of archiving all the world's written works. No other entity can take on this responsibility. "We continue to be enthusiastic about our partnership with Google, and we are confident that this project complies with copyright law. The overarching purpose of copyright law is to promote progress in society. In doing so, it is always a balancing act between the limited rights of the author and the rights of the public. "It is important to note that we will not be sharing the full text of copyrighted works with the public. The Google library project will point searchers toward the works, and tell them how to buy or borrow a copy, but will not give them the full content of works in copyright. This increased searching capability will benefit authors and publishers. Their works will become available to a much wider audience than has ever been the case in the past, and we believe this will increase sales of their works.  "This is a tremendously important public policy discussion. In the future, most research and learning is going to take place in a digital world. Material that does not exist in digital form will effectively disappear. We need to decide whether we are going to allow the development of new technology to be used as a tool to restrict the public's access to knowledge, or if we are going to ensure that people can find these works and that they will be preserved for future generations."  University of Michigan News Service 9/21/05 http://www.umich.edu/news/?Releases/2005/Sep05/r092105

 

WIPO’s Future Work, Past Credibility On Table At General Assemblies

The top officials of the World Intellectual Property Organization member states this week gather for their annual meeting facing an unusual number of critical issues for the U.N. body, several of which involve the credibility of the organization itself.  The issues before the WIPO General Assemblies, which range from global patent harmonization sought by its most influential members to scrutiny of WIPO’s financial practices to the proposed wholesale reform of the organization to more strongly reflect developing country concerns, also appear to be more closely tied to each other than usual, observers say. The assemblies run from 26 September to 5 October at WIPO headquarters in Geneva. An issue of top concern for developing countries and one that sets this year apart from the past is a proposal for a WIPO Development Agenda that would affect many of its activities. The proposal reflects dissatisfaction among many members with WIPO’s perceived orientation toward its biggest clients – and contributors: the developed countries. The development agenda proposal was first introduced at the General Assemblies in October 2004 by Argentina and Brazil, who were joined by 12 other so-called Friends of Development. It has been expanded during the year and includes a variety of changes to WIPO’s structure and operation including greater transparency in policy-making and budget-setting, an office to evaluate the development impact of WIPO activities, and changing its bylaws to better resemble other U.N. bodies.  Intellectual Property Watch 9/26/05  http://www.ip-watch.org/weblog/index.php?p=91&res=1024_ff&print=0

 

Pressure Prompts Publisher to Punt

A publisher of nearly 200 scholarly journals has canceled publication of a book on same-sex desire in ancient times; citing complaints from a conservative Web site that one chapter in the book “could be interpreted as advocating adult and adolescent sexuality.” Haworth Press, Inc. announced that its Harrington Park Press imprint would not publish Same-Sex Desire and Love in Greco-Roman Antiquity and in the Classical Tradition of the West. The book was scheduled to appear as a freestanding title and as a special issue of the Journal of Homosexuality, which Haworth also publishes, in November.  The book, which is edited by two researchers at Nova Scotia’s Acadia University and includes the work of scholars at the University of California at Los Angeles, City University of New York’s Hunter College, and the University of Texas at Austin, among others, is generally a history of the role and perception of homosexuality in ancient Greece and Rome. But it also features a chapter, called “Pederasty: An Integration of Cross-Cultural, Cross-Species, and Empirical Data,” by Bruce Rind, an assistant professor of psychology at Temple University. Last week, WorldNetDaily, a Web site that describes itself as independent but that often takes up conservative causes, published an article drawing attention to an abstract of Rind’s article that appeared on Haworth’s Web site, which began this way: “Pederasty, or sexual relations between men and adolescent boys, is condemned in our society as an unqualified evil that maims and destroys. In ancient Greece, samurai Japan, and numerous other cultures, pederasty was seen as the noblest of human relations, conducive if not essential to nurturing the adolescent’s successful intellectual and physical maturation.”  Inside Higher Ed News 9/27/05  http://insidehighered.com/news/2005/09/27/publish

 

The scholarly communications are also on line at http://www.library.uiuc.edu/administration/scholarly_communication/. This issue will be available soon.