Category Archives: 2006

Annual conference of the American Library Association, held in New Orleans June 22-28, 2006.

LITA Membership Development Committee Meeting

Sunday, June 25th, 2006 8-10am
Hilton New Orleans Riverside – Burgundy

Introductions – Attending: Pat Ensor, Mike Bolam, Kate Montgomery, Richard Kim, James Longwell-Stevens, Jennifer Weintraub, Kari Swanson, Howard Spivak, Christina Biles, Bonnie Postlethwaite. Howard Spivak was the only member present who was outgoing, so pat gave him his certificate of recognition for his service to the committee and thanked him.

Approval of minutes – see http://tinyurl.com/n3vpf; minutes were approved. Membership Report: 2006 membership is 4056, down 3.05% from 2005 (at Midwinter, it was down 7.21% year over year)

Items of interest from ALA Membership Committee (pat attended part of their Saturday meeting) – They and BARC are going to be occupied with following a Council directive to project the resources that would be needed to do a study of changing to a graduated dues structure based on salary. Then there will be a decision on whether or not to do the actual study. Keith Fiels mentioned that he is talking with people about the idea of focusing on library school students in the next membership push, and people seemed receptive to this idea. An ongoing representative is needed to ALA Membership, which has a couple of meetings – not sure if they’re always the same times, but this time they were Saturday and Monday mornings. Mike Bolam volunteered for this.

The Open House went well – there were many experienced LITA participants as well as many “newbies” and prospects. The current format seems to achieve its objectives to be informal and allow people to talk with others who can help them get more involved or tell them about LITA. Kate Montgomery will coordinate the Open Houses for Midwinter and Annual – this consists primarily of publicity – providing copy for a flyer, spreading the word to LITA members who can represent committees and IGs, and spreading word to potential and new LITA members. Pat will make sure the Open House is already in the programming schedule and request a room.

Happy Hour also seemed lively; it helped that it was near the Open House in location and time, although some complaints were received because it was opposite the big opening session with Madeline Albright. There was some discussion of putting the Happy Hour back on Friday night. However, many points seem to be in favor of keeping it on Saturday:

• People may not come to conference till Saturday, or they may experience travel delays that mean they can’t make a Friday evening thing.
• At Midwinter the Friday time conflicts with the opening conference reception, something which provides food. It would be confusing to keep switching the Happy Hour back and forth.
• Having it on Saturday and near the Open House means that potential and new LITA members who might not be tuned in to the usual LITA happenings can have time to hear about the Happy Hour and plan to attend. This seems to have happened this time.
• There are potential ways to deal better with the Saturday conflict – the Happy Hour could start a little later, or have a “declared” time that goes later, so that people would know they could go to the conference session then come to Happy Hour. Also, there’s nothing to stop us from having a get-together on Friday, too, for people who want to gather where they know other LITA members are.

Conclusion: Stick with Saturday for now, but consider posting the hours as 5:30 to 8, or 6 to 8 (we need to be careful we don’t lose the connection with the Open House, though.) Richard Kim will organize the Happy Hours for Midwinter and Annual. We have to see where the Open Houses will be first.

Pat thanked Jennifer for scheduling the LITA Booth. It was noted that in future, it would be good for all the MDC members to do at least an hour. We had lots of nice things to give away at the booth this year; the only drawback was that all the division booths were located at the very end of the convention center, where not that many people needed to go. Mary was going to talk with Conference Services about this, and undoubtedly other divisions will say something, too.

NMRT – pat attending NMRT’s student recruitment reception and has been appointed NMRT/LITA MDC liaison by NMRT. Another recruiting opportunity was the Spectrum Scholars Leadership Development Institute Professional Options Fair, attended by pat. This went very well.

Follow-up on other items from MW 2006 – pat and Christina are meeting with the 2006 Forum Committee to talk about having more of a LITA membership “presence” at Forum. As noted in the notes of the Board membership discussion, Bonnie is working to connect with EDUCAUSE. A public library IG (which should give a clearly stated incentive for public library people to join) is being organized by Paul Keith; the petition is being brought forth this conference.

It was concluded that this committee’s meetings should stay at the same time, 8am to 10am, Sunday morning, at both Midwinter and Annual. Other “committee functioning” business – after Annual, members will be subscribed to an MDC listserv. We are being encouraged to use the new online community function ALA has provided; pat will take the administrator training, then we will see what is necessary for the other committee members. LITA now has a section of an ALA-provided Wiki function, so we should see if there is anything that would be suitable for us to do using that.

The Board discussion on Saturday about member recruitment yielded two target groups for special emphasis in the near future: library/information science school students, and non-MLS IT professionals working in library settings. The group agreed that this was a good direction to go.

Putting the student recruitment focus into action: it was pointed out that there are many online-only students who may be great candidates for LITA membership. We need a consistent electronic “package” of links and information that can be sent to students. Howard agreed to find the previous draft of the membership “kit,” and send it to pat who will update/repurpose it. The group agreed that the personal approach by a LITA member to a library school would be a great thing to try. James, a current Rutgers online student, will see what can be done with their program to send out LITA information and find out about face-to-face contact opportunities. Kari will contact Southern Connecticut State, Mike will contact Pitt, and also try to get list of schools with online programs. Bonnie will work with Emporia and University of Missouri, pat with UNT and TWU in Houston. Pat will also put the word out to find more LITA members who would be willing to do this.

IT Professionals: we are unclear what would be involved with contacting all directors, with the concept of urging them to send their appropriate staff to Forum and have them join LITA. Pat will talk with the LITA office about this. Pat will also work on ways of identifying more people in LITA who are already in this category and find out what they like about LITA.

What about the “development” part of our function? – It is within the purview of this committee to do activities that help develop leadership within LITA. Discussion will go forward online and at Midwinter.

BIGWIG Meeting Notes from Annual 06

Over half the group has laptops upon the lap. It is quite amusing. These are just notes from our business meeting, so they are very informal.

BIGWIG is the blogging, interactive media, wiki, and social software interest group of LITA. We have our program Monday at 10:30, Next Stop Blogging. (added later: which went grrreeeat!)

Agenda
Consider program for 2007
Hosting
Publishing policy
Flickr account is linked to a Yahoo ID and Yahoo does not have a great privacy policy – do we need to talk about this?
Health of the blog
In between meetings
Standards category
Officers category
Wiki

During the intros, Karen Schneider gets beignet powder on her laptop and there is much hilarity. Chris Strauber gets a picture, so it is out there somewhere.

There is a LITA Wiki! The LITA education committee has content for the wiki and was wondering if this group would take on the structure of things. Who is moderating the wiki?

We should try to figure out guidelines for when LITA people blog, wiki, or something else. We need to educate the membership on some guidelines for what content is appropriate for which format.

Action Item: Christina Piles, Karen Coombs, Jason Griffey volunteer to help the education committee with moving stuff and creating policy for the new wiki.

There is a web searching toolkit and this content could be added into the wiki. Someone comments that we are making the W in BIGWIG happen.

We have nominations. Michelle Boule and Karen Coombs volunteer themselves and they are elected as co-chairs for the next year. We discuss other positions we need. Jason Griffey is put into the position of Chair Elect for the next year. Kevin Clarke is nominated at the Technical Coordinator. Action Item: Open position is the Volunteer Coordinator. If you would like to do this, please email Michelle Boule.

Do we want to do a program in 07? Yes we do. Action Item: Karen C. and Michelle will fill out the paperwork for this program.

BIGWIG has its own listserv

Blogging between conferences:
Diane would like to use LITA blog for Standards. The group thinks this is fine and a category will be added to the blog for Standards. We also decide to have a category for officers to post the goings on of their repective groups. Michelle wants to have a core group of bloggers. Pat Ensor does not think we should go out looking for them but let them come to us. It is like columns in the newsletter. It is already open to everyone but, we are not like the other ALA blogs. We want the LITA blog to be its own animal. It will be busier during conferences, but we want to increase our in between postings. We do not want it to be a listserv but we want some meaty things about what the different committees are doing. Interviews. Making it easier for people to contribute. More of the local and state stuff getting blogged. More from other places in LITA.

What are we posting? Things that are original to LITA, content from our meetings and conferences. We could also post supplements to topics. We need to break out of the conference only groove. Synthesis of discussions going on elsewhere and adding value to the conversation. Recognizing the work of LITA people. Aaron Dobbs is going to write a post on just what people can find on the LITA Blog.

Tutorials should go on the wiki and not the blog.

Screen casting and podcasting could be used for variety.

Action Items: Karen C. will coordinate posts for elections. Mark Beatty is going to pass on the word to the LITA Nominating Committee to talk to Karen C.

A question about moderating policies, etc.
This is different than a personal blog; it is an official blog and we have to have controls and policies. Though asking new bloggers about their experience when they receive an account is a good idea, it may not work because we would still have verify that what they are telling us is true. We need to reword our policy to be more explicit about our moderation policy. We should also consider giving everyone some sort of limit so that if they have not posted for a year then they will be dropped to “subscriber.” After conference, the Volunteer Chair, currently Michelle Boule, will go through and reduce the needed people to subscriber.

Action Item: Michelle will be looking at policy, rewrite/add, and send to BIGWIG list for approval.

We decide to talk about the Flickr/Yahoo privacy thing because we are running out of time.

LISHost:
Concerns about backup not being done nightly.
The blog is an archive of divisional activity. Staffing issues of LISHost: are there any?
BIGWIG needs to look at hosting issues. We need to have more support. We need to decide what we need from a host and then look at our options. We should choose rigorously. We want permanent archiving. We are going to continue discussion of support, maintenance, and ongoing archive online. Archival issues might be a different set of questions, but we need to resolve that. How much stuff can we put on the server of our host? Adding different files, media files, is going to take up space and might cost more. Action Item: Kevin will launch discussion online.

Meeting time at Midwinter.
Can the bloggers’ room be sponsored by LITA instead of closing it to others? We could have a sign in o see who is coming and going. Action Item: Mark Beatty will take to the LITA Board and float idea of having a sponsored room. Mary Taylor is the person to talk to to get the room set up.

We thank Karen Schneider (and Clara Ruttenberg, who is not here) for being fabulous co-chairs.

Our next meeting is at Midwinter, Sunday at 10:30 in the LITA blogging room.

LITA President’s Program: We Are Here. Where Are Our Users?

We Are Here. Where Are Our Users?
Cathy De Rosa
OCLC
VP, Marketing and Library Services

John Horrigan
Pew Internet & American Life Project

[My comments are in brackets. I might have to change batteries halfway through the program. Just a warning.]

Where are the connections and disconnections between us and our users?

Cathy goes first:
It is easy to miss the things that are all around us. [We are immune to them because we see them each day.] Cathy spends some time showing us some of the things that have come from the OCLC environmental scan. Only about 1% of users start on our web pages when looking for something. In 1950, a similar study of library use showed that only 1% of the people said they would ask a librarian about a topic. Not much has changed in 50 years.

For real change, there has to be behavioral change, technology infrastructure, and economics to support the change. The behavioral change is the most important for librarians. Users are using technology to do things differently, for modifying things that they own.

Reference transactions are dropping drastically in all ARL libraries. However, people still want to use our institutions and they want to borrow our books.

OCLC asked college students: What are you doing less? 40% said they watched television less and 39% said the use the library less. They do not want to do passive things. Libraries are still about books. [and books are a passive form of information.]

What makes information worthwhile? How do they decide it is worthwhile? 86% of respondents said they just “know.”

Our users serve themselves, they self publish, they are smart, and they are sharing. [They are smart and we need to start listening to our users. They already know what they want. How can we give it to them?]

[I change batteries and we change speakers.]

John speaks:
High speed internet use is up and has a direct impact with how much time people spend online.

Digital information helps people by reducing uncertainty in people’s lives. People are more informed about their health, about their healthcare, and use the internet for information that can help them make better decisions about things in their lives.

Digital information empowers people. People who are more informed are also more likely to vote and be engaged.

Digital information also helps people to be creative. [As Cathy said, people do not want to be passive with their information anymore. Anyone can be an artist, a singer, a writer, or a director online. We have created entire worlds online that allow us to achieve a level of creativity which the “real world” has never offered us.]

The internet supplants traditional media. Does the Long Tail thicken the leading edge? Will there be a greater demand for research skills and the network speed to access it? [Great question! Where can libraries step in? What services can we offer that capitalizes on this? As I said before, we need to leverage our virtual presence to BE A PRESENCE on the web.]

Information delivery is now faster and the cost is going down. The internet is imbedded into people’s lives and the things they use. Network and broadband speed will grow.

What does this mean for libraries? The new demands are still within the traditional role of libraries. Libraries should build on our strengths to adapt.

Emerging Technologies IG

LITA’s Emerging Technologies Interest Group met Monday morning and reveled in a successful audiobooks panel which discussed Playaway devices, Netlibrary offerings and other items in a well-attended session. It was interesting to hear how Apple has not been involved w/ ALA & has not had a booth in 4 years; they did not wish to participate in the panel.

A discussion ensued about podcasting and how it can be seen as a narrowly focused term. Eric Ipsen, outgoing chair of the SIG discussed a need to discuss “push” technologies which get library information into the hands of users without having them come to us in physical libraries. He remarked that we need to use a term like “pod learning” to truly describe all of the possibilities of podcasting. Since kids communicate in bursts, Eric says, through IM’s and cell phone text messages, they have an ongoing knowledge of what others are doing in a way that is not simply “pinging” each other just to say “hi.” The group agreed that this has important implications for learning in libraries.

Maurice (“Morris”) York from Emory University discussed podcasting at ALA Annual 2007, as a possible preconference program or concurrent program in Washington DC. If you would like to help him plan and/or present a podcasting session, email him at mcyork@emory.edu — and tell him you’re from AASL! There are many possibilities for partering with other ALA Divisions or groups on educating librarians about technologies for learning.

Joe Ford, incoming SIG chair, discussed the updated charge of the SIG, which is to identify technologies with automation and information and user services and their impact on library services; if you have any ideas on what needs the ALA membership may have, all are welcome. Podcasts as e-reserves, RSS delivery to cell phone, wi-max and broadband metropolitan wireless, patron book purchase request tracking and real-time delivery of video were items mentioned to start in the short time the group had together, and more discussions will occur online.

If you know of a library that is doing wonderful things with emerging technologies, let us know!

Top Technology Trends, NISO’s “Identifiers Roundup”, Electronic Resource Management Systems in Consortia, and JPEG2000 in Libraries and Archives

Just when I needed it (e.g. the ALA convention) I found I had lost my credentials for the LITA Blog, so I’ve been posting summaries of meetings on a personal blog, the Disruptive Library Technology Jester. Michelle has reset my password (thanks, Michelle!), but rather than reposting entire entries here I’ll just include a summary and a link to the DLTJ entry. (You really didn’t think I’d try to jam all four reports into one blog posting, did you?)

It’s All About User Services: A Summary and Commentary on the LITA Top Technology Trends meeting

A summary and commentary on the LITA Top Technology Trends meeting. What I tried to do is collate comments from the panel members and add my own commentary (marked off from the rest of the summary) where I thought I had something useful to add. The summary is broken down into “Evolution and Interim Solutions,” “Faceted Browsing,” “Findability as a Service,” “Actionability as a Service,” “Publishing Platform as a Service,” and a catch-all “Network Services.” Read more…

“Identifiers Roundup” — LITA Standards Interest Group in conjunction with NISO

This is a report of the presentations from the LITA Standards Interest Group. Pat Stevens, interim director of NISO, moderated the panel discussion talking about ISSNs, ISBNs, and the role of CrossRef. Read more…

Electronic Resource Management Systems in Consortial Environments

This is a summary of the discussion of the LITA Library Consortia / Automated Systems Interest Group meeting on Monday morning. The meeting consisted of a managed discussion of the use of Electronic Resource Management (ERM) systems in consortial environments. Read more…

Minutes of the ALA/LITA JPEG2000 for Libraries and Archives interest group meeting

The heading above pretty much says it all. Read more…

Audiobook 3.0 (Was Ebook 3.0) Question & Answer (2 of 2)

Ipsen

Q: What kinds of libraries do audience members work at?
(About half and half public and academic libraries, with a few school and special)

Q to panel: How do you make your money? The service? The device?

Potash: We’re a solutions provider. Libraries came to us and said this is what we want–as much popular stuff as possible. We want to control presentation and use. Two revenue models: system fees for integration with ILS and Marc records; partnerships with publishers to resell material (digital costs are lower than print); can also provide a digital repository with no content. Like a digital vending machine you can set up exactly how you want. 9000 audio books from many publishers, many in foreign languages.

Celeste: We make things and sell them. Licensing content and reselling it in a new form. Or working with the publisher to distribute their content. Business model uncomplicated, too. Tech support on the product gets done by Playaway, not the library.

Harrison: OCLC is a membership, non-profit org. Subscriptions by libraries. And licensing agreements with publishers. Access is part of what is provided.

Q to Potash: Relationship with Creative (what kind of players). How are people listening to your content? A: We’ll offer the whole Creative line, including a high end video player and low-end 256 mb zen nano pluses. A: Usage. A million audiobook downloads so far, many thousands per month. Design based on libraries saying over and over that patrons want to listen in cars. Easiest solution: download and burn a standard CD (not all suppliers were willing to do this). 1/3 listen on PCs or notebooks, 1/3 on portable player, 1/3 burning to CD. Publisher sets permissions and libraries select what to buy.

Q: What would you have to do to get that on an iPod? Potash: Apple needs to license FairPlay DRM. (I am unable to represent how artfully he expressed the idea that it is technically very feasible to create iPod content employing a standard CD…without in any way endorsing it or associating his company with it).

Q: From a consumer perspective it’s Publisher Rights Management. Consumers who want to will evade the DRM. This sets up a leapfrog effect. Do you see any way around this? (Panel clears its collective throat).

Harrison: Subscription DRM model is content goes out and “comes back”, i.e., expires–which is the library model. The trick is to get users, publishers, and libraries comfortable with a solution.

Potash: There are industry standards efforts to make it possible to interoperate DRM schemes. (Mention of French DRM legislation, which would have required open DRM). There is some consumer pressure now. This is not a unique problem: see Blu-ray vs. HD-DVD formats. Any CD plays anywhere. With audiobooks you have to check and see. Industry standards may fix this. Not there yet.

Q: On devices. Where are the publishers on this? Are publishers unhappy with Playaway? Celeste: It’s similar to a book: you have bought one object which also is better branded than a digital file. On DRM: ours is plastic. Apple is the leader because the customer needed the content and a way to play it: a closed solution. Without iTunes the iPod would not be as popular. You need content and player, a simple solution. “The content is the hero.” The player is nothing without content.

Q: On Playaway. What’s it’s battery life? It runs on a AAA battery and has a headphone jack. It’s a flash-based player. Re-usable by vendor. Pretty durable.

Q: From Ipsen: On batteries. Have you had request for a rechargable battery? Celeste: It’s simpler this way. And nobody has complained that it needs a battery.

Q: For Potash, on partnership with Creative. Doesn’t that acknowledge that you need a device? No. A million downloads without a device tied to it–people have devices that can play this stuff.

Q: What about video? Are you positioning yourself to do video in the future?

Potash: The most important personal device to work with is the cell phone. Newer phones with screens will work with the download service. This is the platform for multimedia. Dial into the library and resume listening to where you were via an 800 number.

Harrison: Agrees. You have to expand the media options. OCLC wants to work on the content libraries have in their collections and bring that into netLibrary. Speech transcripts, historical photographs, anything. Bring it all into a single unified experience.

Celeste: Patents pending on audio and video. How to make it simple. Working with Texas Instruments, the producer of 60% of cellphone chips. My fifteen year old son lives in a different world than I do. But physical books are not going away. The physical experience of a book is part of the experience: and likewise with other kinds of content. Make it simple and immediately accessible.

Q: For Celeste. What kinds of partnerships and how will it affect us? Many kinds of relationships. Whatever works for you–we won’t force you to work with us in a particular way.

Q: What about netflix model for Playaway? Celeste: Sure. We’re learning about how things circulate from our library partners.

Q from Ipsen: Demographics. 44 and older. Are there urban vs. rural differences, large vs. small libraries? Potash: Very popular. The #1 county in Ohio was Holmes County, which is mostly Amish. You can’t stereotype. Adoption is broad-based rural and urban. In Hawaii ILL is by boat–immediacy is important to service. Folks in Cincinnati drove to Cleveland to get library cards so they could download this stuff–it’s 250 miles. Harrison: Agreed. Very broad-based. Not segmentable.

Q: on non-fiction, will breakdown into units continue?

Potash: possible to download only one chapter, or to flip through a table of contents. Popular for Bibles and foreign language learning materials. Working with publishers to make audio searchable. Harrison: Audio full text searching will be available in future. Average time in an ebook is 5-8 minutes; we don’t know for audio.

Q: In rural areas, lots of customers on dialup. How do you serve these folks? Harrison: Two different encoding rates for smaller file sizes. Also caching to let download managers work. Potash: 11-12 hours is 200 megabytes. This makes being able to download a 10-15 mb piece.

Q: Have you thought about Bittorrent or P2P? Potash: We’re not having speed problems.

Q: Are there any studies on audiobooks and accident rate? (laughter). Potash: You may accidentally learn something. Cellphones are probably more dangerous.

Ipsen: Devices are very personal and many people have specific devices for specific purposes. One unified device may not be a solution: some people may not want audio on their cellphones. Libraries may need to be flexible about means and methods.

Audiobook 3.0 (Was Ebook 3.0): The Converging of the Mobile Lifestyle Platform (1 of 2)

Audiobook 3.0: the converging of the mobile lifestyle media platform
Monday June 26 8-noon
Speakers:
Christopher Celeste, CEO PlayAway
Steve Potash, CEO Overdrive
Gillian Harrison, OCLC/NetLibrary

Intro by Eric Ipsen, ETIG (Emerging Technology Interest Group) chair

(about 50 people at start, growing to capacity as the session went on)

Background: Ebook 3.0 was the former title of this session. Sony was very interested in coming and didn’t want to upset ALA, but are very concerned to get the rollout of their new ebook reader right for an important audience. Each of the presenters here does both ebooks and audio books.

Goal: a conversation, not a vendor forum. Encouragement to ask tough questions (and for panelists not to be defensive)

Steve Potash, Overdrive CEO (Cleveland OH)

Digital book publishing for twenty years. Downloadable audio books.
Software company. Originally diskettes, then CD-ROMs. Some evolution since then.
Digital warehousing service for 500 publishers.
Ebooks in multi formats, much foreign lang, from 500 publishers. Ebook, audio, music, etc.
NY Public Library has a link to eCollection catalog. Music, audio books, ebooks (PDF