Current Cites

February 2015

Edited by Roy Tennant

Contributors: Charles W. Bailey, Jr., Warren Cheetham, Alison Cody, Peter Hirtle, Leo Robert Klein, Nancy Nyland, Roy Tennant

Band, Jonathan. "What Does the HathiTrust Decision Mean for Libraries?Research Library Issues: A Report from ARL, CNI, and SPARC  (285)(2015): 7-13. ( - What could be more clear-cut than fair use? All you have to do is apply the four-factor guidelines, right? I wish. Unfortunately, fully understanding fair use requires constantly reading new court opinions, and Band provides a useful update on a major fair use case, Authors Guild v. HathiTrust. (ARL provides a summary of this complex case, and you can get an exhaustive list of documents at the The Public Index.) The good news is that the "decision clearly indicates that the acts of a library digitizing the works in its collection, and the library's storage of the resulting digital files, are fair uses under section 107 of the Copyright Act" and that access by the disabled is permitted. The bad news is that "the court provides little specific guidance concerning the permissibility of other forms of access." However, the ruling does provide some additional clarifications of particular issues for legal scholars to ponder. For an update about six more recent fair use cases, see "Fair Use Rising: Full-Text Access and Repurposing in Recent Case Law" in the same special issue on copyright. - CB

College Art Association. Code of Best Practices in Fair Use for the Visual Arts  New York: College Art Association, 9 February 2015.( - No matter whether you are Shepherd Fairy, Jeff Koons, or Richard Prince, knowing when it is acceptable to use visual images made by others is challenging. This latest best practice code from Peter Jaszi and Pat Aufderheide of American University's Center for Media and Social Impact attempts to clarify the issue. Through a series of interviews, the authors establish what some members of the visual arts community believe represents good professional practice and offer some suggestions as to why courts might agree. The five principles are fairly generic ("Museums and their staffs may invoke fair furtherance of their core missions, subject to certain limitations"); there are no bright line rules. The supporting materials on the site, especially the discussion of risk assessment and international liability issues in the FAQ that accompanies the document, are more instructive. The document may not be able to tell Richard Prince whether a court would find a specific incorporation of copyrighted material into new artwork to be a fair use. But at the same time, it reminds us that exciting projects such as the Terra Foundation Center for Digital Collections, which is putting online entire collections from the Archives of American Art, are not as risky as one might first think. - PH

Enis, Matt. "OCLC Works Toward Linked Data EnvironmentLibrary Journal  (17 February 2015)( - When it comes to Linked Data, there are four types of library professionals; those that have stopped reading this already and skipped to the next citation, those that get excited by Linked Data and are still reading, and those that are bad at counting short lists. Here’s a short article that may help those first two groups of folks. There’s no hope for that third, I mean fourth group. This article reports on a session at the ALA 2015 Midwinter conference titled ‘OCLC Links and Entities: The Library Data Revolution’. Those that ‘get’ the importance of Linked Data might find this article worth sharing with those colleagues who don’t share their excitement. The reason to take notice of Linked Data is phrased well by Richard Wallis when he says “…we’re in a position at the moment where we’re in danger of a library-shaped black hole appearing in this Web of Data. We’re not very visible on the web at all.” The article then dips into some specific projects that the Library of Congress and OCLC are conducting in this space, and has links to these for further reading. - WC

Head, Alison J. "Project Information Literacy's Lifelong Learning Study Phase Two: Trends from the Online SurveyProject Information Literacy  (17 February 2015)( - This research brief reports on the second phase of a Project Information Literacy study looking at the lifelong learning practices of recent college graduates. (The brief on Phase 1 was cited in the July 2014 issue of Current Cites.) Researchers contacted recent graduates (2007 - 2012) from 10 institutions in the US, sending them a survey about their lifelong learning needs, preferences, and behaviors. Approximately 1,600 respondents completed the questionnaire, and researchers identified seven trends in their responses. The analysis found that respondents lean more heavily on colleagues and friends for workplace learning needs than they do on the internet - a shift from a finding in 2012. About half of respondents noted that they used social media platforms for both personal and professional research. Lastly, and perhaps unsurprisingly, respondents noted that finding time and financial resources is the most challenging aspect of pursuing lifelong learning goals . Phase 3 of this study is slated to begin soon; during this portion, researchers will conduct phone interviews with a number of survey respondents, and expect to release a third report in fall 2015. - AC

Loukides, Mike, and Jon  Bruner. What is the Internet of Things?  Sebastopol, CA: O'Reilly Media, Inc., 2015.( - This brief (26-page) report explains what the phrase "Internet of things" means and why it is important. It begins by trying to describe what is new, since it is based upon technologies like software and computer networking that have been around for a while. It seems to be the level of interoperation between software-enabled devices, including ubiquitous connectivity and constant data acquisition. The flood of data can then be analyzed and acted upon by software in real or near-real time. When you add "new manufacturing" to this, where soon just about anyone will be able to produce "smart" physical goods (think inexpensive 3D printing married to inexpensive electronics), and you're getting pretty close to a revolution. In other words, this is potentially huge and it would be in the best interest of librarians to pay attention, and consider carefully the implications of these events on the users and communities we serve. It would be difficult for me to imagine a more important technology publication to read in 2015. - RT

Mansfield, T, C  Winter, and C  Griffith, et. al."Innovation Study: Challenges and Opportunities for Australia's Galleries, Libraries, Archives and MuseumsThe Commonwealth Scientific and Industrial Research Organisation (CSIRO)  (September 2014)( Releases/2014/Australian_museums_digital_dinosaurs/GLAM_Innovation_Study_September2014-Report_Final_accessible.ashx). - What are the key transformations that libraries (and galleries, museums and archives) need to make, to thrive in the emerging digital environment of the next two decades? This is the question posed by the peak scientific research organisation of Australia (CSIRO) in their examination of Australian cultural institutions' shift to digital. This report outlines the engagement process with the sector and makes a number of recommendations. A deeper engagement with the public, a recognition that the sector plays a role in community wellbeing, creative reuse of digitised content and better funding and collaboration planning are all proposed. The report also recognises that innovative work in this area is already underway in Australia, and a list of recommended reading, sector information and events associated with the report can be found at - WC

Morrison, Heather, Jihane  Salhab, and Alexis  Calvé-Genest, et. al."Open Access Article Processing Charges: DOAJ Survey May 2014Publications  3(1)(5 February 2015): 1-6. ( - If one only read reports from the Copyright Clearance Center, one might believe that all open access publishing involves the payment of article processing fees (APCs). Morrison's article is a timely reminder that the APC scene is much more volatile than one might think. Using a sample of journals drawn from the Directory of Open Access Journals, she found that 2/3rds of open access journals charge no APCs. Of those that do, the amount can vary from $1 to $4,114 per article. We don't know what APC charge, if any, will need to be budgeted in order to maintain a sustainable scholarly communications process. Morrison also notes that there appears to be consolidation in the number of publishers that publish journals with APCs, and wonders if it has the same implications that toll-access journal consolidation has had. This is an important peek into the still-murky world of APC pricing and fees. - PH

Salo, Dorothea. "MARC, Linked Data, and Human-Computer Asymmetry Peer to Peer ReviewLibrary Journal  (5 February 2015)( - Salo has emerged as one of the most articulate and thought-provoking library commentators writing today. This piece is no exception. Riffing off her efforts to put together an introductory lecture for her students in her "XML and Linked Data" course, she considers why MARC was developed (to print catalog cards), describes why that is turning out to be disastrous for libraries, and ends with the thought that no single standard was probably ever the right solution or ever will be. Rather, by focusing on basic principles for machine-ready data we can perhaps avoid warring over formats and get down to business. Her beginning set of principles include atomicity (also known as granularity), consistency, and reliable, unchanging identifiers. Sounds good to me. - RT

Stein, Bob. "Back to the FutureJournal of Electronic Publishing  18(2)(Spring 2015)( - It isn't necessary to agree with every statement in this brief discussion of "social reading schemes", in order to appreciate the simple but powerful idea that online collaborative technology is changing the nature both of reading and writing. Books, the author declares "will become places where people congregate to hash out thoughts and ideas." This may not be centered around "gaming culture" as the author seems to think but it has important implications for instruction and education in general. - LRK

Thompson, Kim M., et. al.Digital Literacy and Digital Inclusion  Lanham, MD: Rowman & Littlefield, 2014.( - Australia, the Netherlands and South Korea, among others, are all outpacing the United States in bringing their citizenry onto the Internet. The first four chapters make a compelling case for why digital literacy is beneficial for commerce, specifically, and societies in general. For users to be both included in the digital world and also operate as literate there, they must have physical access, intellectual access, and social access to information and computer technologies. Intellectual access means being able to understand and use the technology once you have physical access. Social access is how information is used (or not used) within a social context: "... the idea that simply because one can physically and intellectually access needed information, it does not necessarily follow that one does access that information or that all readers, listeners, or touchers interpret the information in the same way." (p. 6) The authors then make a compelling case for the critical role of public libraries in advancing digital literacy. Finally, they make public policy recommendations, tying in existing research and the experience of libraries globally. The only drawback here is that the $75 price will make it prohibitive for advocates to purchase a copy for every federal, state and county library funder in the country. - NN