Current Cites

Current Cites, November 2006

Edited by Roy Tennant

Contributors: Charles W. Bailey, Jr., Leo Robert Klein, Roy Tennant

Digital Library Federation/Aquifer Implementation Guidelines for Shareable MODS Records  Washington, DC: Digital Library Federation, November 2006.( - Although this document is specifically aimed at participants in the Digital Library Federation Aquifer project, it is chock full of good advice for any organization wanting to expose or share their metadata to other institutions -- for example, via the Open Archives Initiative Protocol for Metadata Harvesting (OAI-PMH). Note, however, that this document is quite specific to how metadata should be encoded using the Metadata Object Description Schema (MODS) format. Related (and more generally applicable) work can be found at the Digital Library Federation and NSDL OAI and Shareable Metadata Best Practices Working Group web site. - RT

Brogan, Martha L. Contexts and Contributions: Building the Distributed Library  Washington, DC: Digital Library Federation, November 2006.( - This rather massive report (the PDF version runs 282 pages) covers a lot of ground. This is at it should be, since these days there are a very large number of potentially interesting digital library projects. But therein also lies the difficulty. Although the broad sweep that Brogan lays out for us is amazing in itself, it is deucedly difficult to draw any generalized conclusions from such an exercise. There are many threads of activity that are advancing at varying rates of speed and with sometimes parallel, sometimes congruent, and sometimes tangential arcs. Making sense of all this is perhaps an exercise in frustration, at least for those of puny intellect such as myself. Nope, probably best to look at it as a wild ride through an amazing array of interesting projects and glean from it what you can. My guess is that like the blind men encountering the elephant, our perception of this report will depend greatly on the part to which we affix our grasp. All of this should not be construed to be critical of the author -- this is clearly an achievement of monumental scale, to have looked both broadly and deeply at such a wide array of digital projects and emerged with an amazing portrait of where we are at this point in time. Full disclosure: a couple projects in which I am a participant or manager are highlighted. - RT

Frumkin, Jeremy. "In Our Cages with Golden Bars"  OCLC Systems & Services  22(4)(2006): 247-248. - This is a short piece about doing away with the "golden bars" of a cage that Frumkin believes we impose on ourselves when developing new systems. It's about expertise and where to position it. As Frumkin says, "We need to forgo our own need to push our library expertise onto our users, and instead use that expertise to do the heavy lifting for our users." - LRK

Gierveld, Heleen. "Considering a Marketing and Communications Approach for an Institutional RepositoryAriadne  (49)(October 2006)( - Anyone who has been involved with an institutional repository project knows that you can build it, but it doesn't mean they will come. The technical hurdles are nothing compared to getting people to actually deposit content in it. So this article by Gierveld is useful and timely, in that the number of institutions creating repositories is already large and is increasing. Gierveld offers the "8 P's" strategy of marketing: Product, Price, Promotion, Place, Public, Partnership, Policy, and Purse String. For each of these, she offers examples specific to an institutional repository, and follows up with specific marketing strategies institutions can take to increase the take up and use of their repository. Recommended reading for any institution that has a repository or is hoping to create one. - RT

McDonald, Robert H., and Chuck  Thomas. "Disconnects between Library Culture and Millennial Generation ValuesEDUCAUSE Quarterly  29(4)(2006): 4-6. ( - Are research libraries reaching Millennials? The authors don't think so, and they examine how current library cultural values, technologies, and policies are barriers to libraries seizing new opportunities to serve this important user group. For example, they note: "Dogmatic library protection of privacy inhibits library support for file-sharing, work-sharing, and online trust-based transactions that are increasingly common in online environments, thus limiting seamless integration of Web-based services." Whether you agree or not, this article is worth a read. - CB

Sale, Arthur. "The Patchwork MandateUTas ePrints  (2006)( - You can't get your university administration to mandate deposit of e-prints in your institutional repository. There are voluntary deposit strategies, but Sale notes: "The 'everything else' policies are not worth talking about for long. In the absence of mandates, every encouragement policy known to Man fails to convince more than 15% to 20% of researchers to invest the 5 minutes of time needed to deposit their publications. The percentage does not grow with time." What to do? The answer: work to get departmental mandates. - CB