Current Cites

October 2017

Edited by Roy Tennant

Contributors: Charles W. Bailey, Jr., Warren Cheetham, Leo Robert Klein, Nancy Nyland

Atkins, Winston, Cynthia  Ghering, and Margaret  Kidd, et. al.Staffing for Effective Digital Preservation 2017: An NDSA Report  Washington, DC: National Digital Stewardship Alliance, 2017.( - NDSA's latest web survey of digital preservation staffing practices provides some interesting insights into this increasingly important function, especially in the US which accounted for 78% of respondents. Surveyed organizations had an average of 13.6 FTE dedicated to digital preservation activities; however, they would like to increase that number to 27.5 FTE. Additional cataloger/metadata analysts, digital archivists, and software developers were especially needed. Sixty-eight percent of respondents relied on retraining existing staff to provide digital preservation support, and 42% also hired experienced specialists. Only 25% of respondents were satisfied with the current organization of the digital preservation function: 46% of respondents were dissatisfied. Surprisingly, 73.2% of respondents projected future digital collection growth to be less than 25%. - CB

Chan, Valinda. "7 Things I Wished Designers Did More Of When Working With DevelopersMedium  (20 June 2017)( - Replace the word designers with ‘library staff’ throughout this blog post and you’ll find some very useful tips for your next library IT / digital project. Valinda Chana works in both software development and design, so her advice is well balanced. While some of the tips might sound obvious to experienced library and IT staff, I’ve witnessed significant projects where at least some of these insights have not been followed, to the detriment of the project. Tip 3 on using prototypes instead of static examples where possible, is invaluable. I’ve seen simple paper prototyping exercises reveal significant user experience defects in website design, saving the project valuable time and money down the track. Valinda’s conclusion is a wonderful reminder that the success and failure of projects rely on people, not the novelty or innovation of the digital product. “Empathy, communication, and organization are key to achieving your team’s vision. Remember that design is about co-creation. The more we feel that we are building a product with you — as opposed to just building out your designs — the better the relationship and final product will be.” From the blog post, click and read her companion piece, “Here’s the reverse: 7 things I wished developers did more of when working with designers (library staff)”. - WC

Lynch, Clifford. "The Rise of Reading Analytics and the Emerging Calculus of Reader Privacy in the Digital WorldFirst Monday  22(4)(3 April 2017)( - When the Founding Fathers were crafting the Bill of Rights more than 200 years ago, they could hardly have foreseen the need for a right to privacy to be enshrined in law. Clifford Lynch, the director of the Coalition for Networked Information, explains the many ways in which we have no privacy in an environment where every view of a Web page, every click on a link, and every page turn in an e-book can be, and is being tracked. He has been grappling with the multiple aspects of online privacy since 2014, when he expected to quickly produce a short paper. Three years later, it is a fascinating 2400-word tour through the constantly evolving world of online publishing. It answers the question posed on line one: “Who’s reading what, and who knows what you’re reading?” The entities who want to know what you are reading, and how you are reading it, are many, with varied motivations, which are usually not in the interest of the reader. Scholarly analysis of these systems is sparse because the metrics are proprietary data held by private corporations, who are not sharing their data except with other for-profit companies. They are also not sharing what data they collect or how they collect it. In spite of these obstacles, the author has managed to gather clues and connect the dots to provide at least an outline of the data collection practices of publishers, vendors, platform providers and libraries. - NN

Ng, Cynthia. "A Practical Guide to Improving Web AccessibilityWeave  7(1)(2017)(;rgn=main). - Improved Web accessibility is not just for users with disabilities. Better accessibility in library Website design benefits all users. It motivates Web designers to consider multiple aspects of the user experience: hardware, software and environmental conditions. The author acknowledges that taking “so many considerations into account can be difficult,” but is still well within the realm of possibility. Accessibility considerations include concise writing for the Web, appropriate use of headings, care in how links are constructed and named, attention to which versions of audio content are used, how third-party media are linked or embedded, protocols for display of images, and sensitivity to the effect of color contrast and text styles. For further information, readers are referred to and other user experience Websites such as,, and - NN

Wilders, Coen. "Predicting the Role of Library Bookshelves in 2025Journal of Academic Librarianship  43(5)(September 2017): 384-391. ( - Many librarians can remember the good old days when print books and the shelves that bore them ruled the library environment. Obviously this is no longer the case but it is interesting to look at just what kind of position print books hold in the present and near future. This article looks at print vs. ebook use by topic and user type at an academic library. Not to give too much away but the biggest users of print-based books are in the humanities. - LRK