HarperCollins took its latest step in enabling authors and readers to interact in real time and to give those fascinated by books and publishing an insider’s view of the business, all via live programming using the new Facebook Live app on smartphones. Launched on June 6, the five-day-a-week programs, ranging from 15-45 minutes, can exponentially expand an author’s reach, from being able to live stream a program from their own home or on a book tour, for instance, to posting that program on their Facebook page for later viewing (and sharing on social media) by fans, as well as on HC’s Facebook or Book Studio 16 pages.
Academic profile platform SelectedWorks has been redesigned and was recently relaunched as a librarian-facing faculty support tool, enabling academic libraries to manage the creation and organization of consistent, institution-branded faculty profiles that showcase open access articles and other scholarly work. The redesign was the result of “a change in understanding” of how the platform was being used, according to Jean-Gabriel Bankier, president and CEO of bepress, developer of SelectedWorks, as well as the Digital Commons institutional repository software suite and other academic publishing and communication products.
At a high energy midtown New York gala, the UJA-Federation of New York honored Steve Potash, president and CEO of leading library ebook distributor OverDrive, Inc., and Stuart S. Applebaum, emeritus executive vice president of Corporate Communications at Penguin Random House. UJA’s annual Publishing Division Dinner, held May 24, marked the first time the organization has acknowledged someone entirely dedicated to digital content with its celebration of Potash’s contributions.
The infamous Georgia State University (GSU) e-reserves case (Cambridge University Press v. Patton) emerged last month from its long winter slumber to give us yet another 200+ page decision which librarians, lawyers, and publishers have begun to parse and analyze. And, like me, they are probably asking themselves: What does this decision actually mean?
A new industry award aims to highlight extraordinary programs in public libraries across the country. Sponsored by big five publisher Penguin Random House (PRH), the Library Awards for Innovation will “acknowledge innovative public library programs and services that engage citizens in reading while strengthening the social and cultural fabric of their communities” according to a press release. The awards will consist of one $10,000 grant and four $1,000 grants for runners-up. Additionally, each winning library will receive $1,000 in PRH books.
What does fracking have to do with scholarly publishing and journal pricing? While the library financial landscape has improved since the depth of the Great Recession of 2007 to 2009, it still cannot be considered robust. As articles such as this one chronicle annual serials price increases, libraries, publishers, and vendors search for innovative ways to fulfill information needs within the finite, predefined budget environment. New business and access models ranging from the initial e-journal big deal packages, article pay per view, open access, mega-journals, and publisher e-journal database pricing have evolved in response to the environment; libraries, publishers, and vendors have merged, consolidated, or disappeared along the way. Just as fracking keeps the oil and gas flowing, these strategies enable the current scholarly publishing ecosystem to extract the necessary resources—intellectual and financial—to survive.
Serving the public good has long been the mandate of all libraries. Providing everyone with access to information, without regard to income or demographic differences, is perhaps a library’s most noble aspiration. For patrons with visual challenges, this has meant providing books in multiple formats, including large print.
Hachette Book Group (HBG) announced on March 1 that it had entered into an agreement to buy the Perseus Books Group, an independent publishing company. On March 3, Ingram Content Group announced its plans to purchase Perseus’s distribution operations. The two agreements come a little more than 18 months after an initial deal to sell Perseus’s entire operation to HBG fell through. Both parties hope to close the deals by the end of March, pending regulatory approval. Terms of the transaction were not disclosed.