Friday, April 30, 2010

Ithaka Report : Faculty Survey 2009 Webinar

I watched and listened to a webinar yesterday on the Ithaka Faculty Survey report. The one hour presentation will eventually be archived at the bottom of this page, but it isn't there yet. But, if you want to see and listen to the discussion concerning how faculty feel about libraries, the discussion of Chapter 1 is there. This is a windows media file, .mwv.

The presentation I went to concerned Chapter 2, which is about the "Format Transition for Scholarly Works" (Faculty members’ growing comfort in relying exclusively on digital versions of scholarly materials opens new opportunities for libraries, new business models for publishers, and new challenges for preservation.)

It was interesting to see how faculty are getting very comfortable with having electronic only access to journals. And, it is a growing trend for humanists as well as scientists and social scientists.

At the end of the session, I made a comment concerning the fact that there are different levels of access. Faculty may not know that there are many levels and flavors of access. For example, do faculty really care if they access articles from a journal via the publisher or through JStor or through an aggregator like EBSCO? They just want the article, but to the library, it makes a difference.

I will try to go to the discussion about Chapter 3 on May 5th ("Scholarly Communication" issues) but I might only be able to attend half of that session.

Monday, April 26, 2010

We need a media revolution

Last night, I had the great fortune to attend a session hosted by KBDI and my church concerning the Death and Life of American Journalism: The Media Revolution that Will Begin the World Again. Robert McChesney (University of Illinois, Department of Communication, Illinois Media Matters, and Free Press.) and John Nichols (Washington Correspondent for The Nation) were the main speakers. The Death and Life of American Journalism is also the title of their recent book. (Democracy Now has a good video of them. Much of the content of the video covers what was discussed last night.)

They began the session by saying that they were not really talking about journalism, or news, or the media -- the session is about the fact that the wheels of democracy are changing. Since access to high quality information is critical to an informed citizenry, and that commercial support of news is no longer all that viable, they argue that the federal government needs to support journalism at a much higher level. The Federal Government currently spends about $400 Million/year to support public radio, television (and other media), but the Fed should support the free press at a much higher level. Relative to past Federal support of the media, and compared to other countries, The Federal Government should support the free press to the tune of $30,000 Million ($30 Billion).

I also tweeted many of the tidbits, and they are archived at Friendfeed.

More info? They mentioned a Pew Report which can be found here ( I think). I also learned about The ACME Coalition, and Colorado Public News.

They will also be speaking tonight, 7:00pm at the Unitarian Universalist Church in Boulder.

Tuesday, April 13, 2010

DST topics for April 23

Please vote on the topic(s) you would like to discuss.

Here is a description of the topics.

  1. Aggravations with aggregators – EBSCO has had some public relations issues lately. See this article for more info. Do you have concerns with EBSCO or other aggregators?
  2. Nature and Scientific American – Do have the print magazine? Did you get the electronic backfile from either EBSCO or through Nature?
  3. Improving library spaces – What has your library been doing lately to improve usability of your library spaces?
  4. Morale of your staff – Considering the economy, what has your library been doing to maintain and improve staff morale?
  5. Anything else?