v31 #3 And They Were There Reports of Meetings — 38th Annual Charleston Conference

by | Jun 28, 2019 | 0 comments

Column Editors:  Ramune K. Kubilius  (Galter Health Sciences Library & Learning Center, Northwestern University Feinberg School of Medicine)  

and Sever Bordeianu  (Head, Print Resources Section, University Libraries, MSC05 3020, 1 University of New Mexico, Albuquerque, NM  87131-0001; Phone: 505-277-2645; Fax: 505-277-9813) 

Issues in Book and Serial Acquisition, “Oh, Wind, if Winter comes, can Spring be far behind?” Charleston Gaillard Center, Francis Marion Hotel, Embassy Suites Historic Downtown, and Courtyard Marriott Historic District — Charleston, SC, November 5-9, 2018

Charleston Conference Reports compiled by:  Ramune K. Kubilius  (Galter Health Sciences Library & Learning Center, Northwestern University Feinberg School of Medicine)  

Column Editor’s Note:  Thanks to all of the Charleston Conference attendees who agreed to write short reports highlighting sessions they attended at the 2018 Charleston Conference.  Attempts were made to provide a broad coverage of sessions, but there are always more sessions than there are reporters.  Some presenters posted their slides and handouts in the online conference schedule. Please visit the conference site, http://www.charlestonlibraryconference.com/, and link to selected videos, interviews, as well as to blog reports written by Charleston Conference blogger, Donald Hawkins.  The 2018 Charleston Conference Proceedings will be published in 2019, in partnership with Purdue University Press: http://www.thepress.purdue.edu/series/charleston.

In this issue of ATG you will find the third installment of 2018 conference reports.  The first two installments can be found in ATG v.31#1, February 2019 and v.31#2, April 2019.  We will continue to publish all of the reports received in upcoming print issues throughout the year. — RKK


Keynote Plenary: Navigating Access to Knowledge: Copyright, Fake News, Fair Use, and Libraries — Presented by Ruth Okediji (Harvard Law School) and Ann Okerson (Center for Research Libraries, moderator) — https://sched.co/G65z

Reported by Ramune K. Kubilius  (Northwestern University, Galter Health Sciences Library & Learning Center) 

Introduced by Okerson, the accomplished Okediji transitioned from her 2017 conference role as a “Long Arm of the Law” speaker.  Her keynote was woven not only with threads that were evidence of her legal expertise, but also with memories illustrating her admiration for libraries and their roles (as a civic infrastructure, leveler of society, and a trusted institution to this day, even by millennials).  She highlighted how the original design of the copyright law has evolved. Libraries are not just stakeholders but also anchors (and the role must remain robust). During Q&A, she perhaps surprised some audience members when she expressed her discomfort with the role of librarians as copyright officers — she feels that libraries should reclaim their distinctive role and not serve as enforcers.

The Charleston Conference blog report about this session by Donald Hawkins can be found at:  https://www.against-the-grain.com/2018/11/the-thursday-keynote-navigating-access-to-information-and-libraries-in-the-digital-age-copyright-fake-news-and-ai/.


Blockchain: The big picture for publishing — Presented by Joris van Rossum (Digital Science) and Anthony Watkinson (CIBER Research, moderator) — https://sched.co/G8SJ

Reported by Nicole Eva  (University of Lethbridge)  

Van Rossum, Digital Science, did a good job of making a previously incomprehensible (for this reporter) topic understandable.  He started off listing the current problems with scholarly communication (reproducibility; limitation of metrics;  problems with peer review; and commercialization) and how blockchain can potentially help solve them. He suggested blockchain could be used to give credit for peer review by providing “tokens” which could then be redeemed for APCs, and as an efficient way to manage digital rights (as opposed to micropayments) for downloads.  He also suggested that blockchain could protect your IP, in that you can prove you uploaded something but it also protects your privacy — in this way, it could provide you a token in recognition that you’ve shared your data, but protect your IP as well as allow others to “pay” for your data. The way blockchain facilitates data storage — distributed, decentralized, and transparent — allows you to share information (for example, in a peer review) while remaining anonymous, in addition to being more efficient (tracking who’s been asked to review, an auditable trail which allows you to track a review’s history).  Some drawbacks: bitcoin uses a lot of energy, it’s not yet capable of holding a lot of data, and it is slow, all things that will hopefully be solved in time. 


A Spring of Collaboration: A NISO Update of Strategy, Trends, & Industry Collaboration on Discovery & Interchange — Presented by Robert Hollandsworth (Clemson University), Gaëlle Béquet (ISSN International Centre), Jason Price (SCELC (Statewide California Electronic Library Consortium)), Christine Stohn (Ex Libris), and Julie Zhu (IEEE) — https://sched.co/G8SI

Reported by Ramune K. Kubilius  (Northwestern University, Galter Health Sciences Library & Learning Center) 

The session, introduced in its abstract as a “robust introduction to the work of NISO IDI, the Information Discovery and Interchange topic committee” indeed was both robust and an introduction, not only to the work of the committee, but to NISO itself, beginning with an organizational chart view of NISO.  The focus of this session was on several topic committees: discovery systems, transfer of data, user experience, and web services.  Highlights were provided on the ODI (Open Discovery Initiative) working group, KBART (Knowledge Bases and Related Tools). There was an opportunity to learn more about the NISO Transfer Standing Committee, and so much more.   Each working group and committee has stated goals and initiatives, and involves many players-librarians, publishers, service providers.  Recommended practices, conformance statements, fair linking, transparency, meaningful usage, additional metadata, recommended practices — all include both NISO members and collaborators.  More details can be found in the NISO Strategic Directions report:  https://www.niso.org/publications/niso-strategic-directions-2018.  


Sustainable Open Access Approaches: Benefits for Researchers, Librarians, and Publishers — Presented by Caroline Campbell (IGI Global), Diane Fulkerson (University of South Florida Sarasota-Manatee), Julia Gelfand (University of California, Irvine), Mehdi Khosrow-Pour (IGI Global), and Kevin Sayar (ProQuest) — https://sched.co/G8SK

Reported by Ramune K. Kubilius (Northwestern University, Galter Health Sciences Library)  

Campbell moderated the session.  Fulkerson mentioned the evolution and movement towards sustainable OA, from the Budapest, Bethesda, and Berlin declarations.  Where are we now? Green, Gold, Gratis, Libre, Diamond, with APCs, and predatory players. Remove barriers to price and copyright, and the only limit would be attribution.  Faculty need support and identification of OA journals with high impact. She pointed out the Feb. 2018 article in Peer J by Heather Piwowar et al. called “The state of OA: a large-scale analysis of the prevalence and impact of Open Access articles” (https://doi.org/10.7717/peerj.4375). 

Gelfand talked about equalizers to access, and how OA influences libraries, from ILL (free copies will prevail), to collaboration on scaling of metadata, the IR role (especially when an OA mandate is in place), and the possibilities offered for libraries as publishers.  The role of ILS and discovery layers may fade, she contended. OA is here to grow and expand.

Sayar discussed the dynamic market:  the robust workflow of scholarly communication has no shortage of activities.  His contention: OA is not intended to impact scholarly communication. Rather, it’s about cost and value (impacting usage and distributing cost), a shift to authors.  Libraries are adjusting cost structures associated with APC’s and other fees. Much remains to be learned in order to make it all sustainable.

Khosrow-Pour described an IGI Global pilot project (he called it “alternative” project) with IGI’s OA fund that is available to subscribing institutions’ authors.  He admitted a con to this approach: a potential lack of diversity.

The Charleston Conference blog report about this session by Donald Hawkins can be found at:  https://www.against-the-grain.com/2018/11/sustainable-open-access-approaches-benefits-for-researchers-librarians-and-publishers/.


Throwing Back the Curtain: A Candid Conversation about Negotiating Presented by Adam Chesler (AIP Publishing, moderator), Ashley Fast Bailey (GOBI Library Solutions from EBSCO), Jeremy Garskof (Gettysburg College), Melissa Oakes (ProQuest), and Doug Way (University of Wisconsin-Madison) — https://sched.co/G8SL

Reported by Martha Smith  (Winthrop University)  

Many of us find ourselves in the position of negotiating contract terms, yet most of us have never received any kind of training.  The presenters — 2 librarians and 2 vendors — shared several things for parties to consider when entering a negotiation. For example, the vendor should know who in the library makes the purchasing decisions, and when and how those decisions are made.  In a world of zero change in spending, or reduced budgets, the vendor should be able to describe how a product or service is different from others the library already has, and how the expenditure would reflect the library’s values. Vendors can’t assume that all academic research libraries are the same, and should avoid treating smaller schools as an afterthought.  For their part, libraries need to understand that the vendors have profit margins to meet or have a mission to fulfill, that they have costs that need to be covered, and that the representatives have goals that they need to meet. Also, there is a learning curve for new reps, and librarians should be prepared to provide them with the information they need to best serve the institution, and be understanding if they don’t have immediate answers to questions.  Negotiations will always go smoother if both parties come to the table with a good understanding of each other. This requires relationship-building. The better the parties know each other, the better they will be able to work together to find solutions.  


That’s all the reports we have room for in this issue.  Watch for more reports from the 2018 Charleston Conference in upcoming issues of Against the Grain.  Presentation material (PowerPoint slides, handouts) and taped session links from many of the 2018 sessions are available online.  Visit the Conference Website at www.charlestonlibraryconference.com. — KS


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