As the last DLTJ Thursday Threads of the year, the stories in this post look back to what we saw in 2011 and look forward to what we may see in 2012. Looking backwards is a list of five things we learned about publishing from O’Reilly Media and Google’s 3-minute Zeitgeist video. Looking forward are a list of predictions from Fast Company and from the National Endowment for Science Technology and the Arts in the UK. At this high point when 2011 is slowing and we start down the hill of 2012, I wish you a happy and prosperous new year.
Pluck a string and it vibrates. As it vibrates there are points along the string where it is absolutely still. Pluck a companion string and sometimes those points line up. If you pull that string tighter there are more points of stillness and a greater chance that points will line up. If you pull it too tight, it snaps.
This is the just-in-time-for-the-holidays edition of DLTJ Thursday Threads. The U.S. House Judiciary Committee suspended work on SOPA, and there was much relief from the technology community. The Palo Alto Public Library announced plans to lend Chromebooks (laptops with Google’s cloud-based operating system) to patrons. And OCLC announced a rebranding and expansion of its webscale activities with the WorldShare Platform.
Inclusive of all holidays of the season I wish you a safe, restful and happy celebration.
I’ve been keeping an eye on the House Judiciary Committee markup session for the Stop Online Piracy Act (SOPA) that have happened over the past two days along with the tweets that have been going out in reaction to the proceedings. One of the running threads in the commentary has been the theory of a correlation between campaign contributions from media creators and a desire by representatives to push SOPA through the committee. (Disclosure: I’ve come out publicly against SOPA.) By tabulating the roll call votes and using data from OpenSecrets.org, there does appear to be a correlation, and one that gets tighter the higher the percentage of contributions from media creators. I’ll show my work below.
In this week’s news we still have activity on legislation before the U.S. Congress on measures to protect intellectual property on the internet. This is serious stuff with serious people trying to make this go quietly into law. Well, it may not go quietly into law, but it has enough money-enabled lobbyists behind it that the legislation might become the law of the land. Closer to the profession is the publication of costs associated with various forms of resource sharing at Ohio State University. Finally, tips for communicating well with IT staff.
Earlier this month there was an amazing groundswell of opposition to SOPA, the Stop Online Piracy Act. I participated in a 1-day anticensorship campaign designed to bring awareness to the proposed law, as did thousands of others around the country. It has been reported that this groundswell of opposition caught many in Congress by surprise.
In an interesting turn of events, SOPA’s parent — the PROTECT-IP Act in the U.S. Senate — may come up for vote on the Senate floor this week. (PROTECT-IP, in case you are wondering, is an acronym for “Preventing Real Online Threats to Economic Creativity and Theft of Intellectual Property Act of 2011”.) This bill still contains many of the same troublesome definitions and technical issues of SOPA, and it deserves to be blocked as well. Senator Wyden of Oregon submitted a statement to the U.S. House hearing on SOPA warns of severe repercussions to a free and open internet if SOPA and PROTECT-IP were passed, and he has said he will filibuster an attempt to pass this in the Senate.
With Thursday Threads coming on a Thanksgiving Thursday, it seems appropriate to use a theme of what I’m thankful for. So, in this edition of DLTJ Thursday Threads I’m offering three things: open source software, the internet, and public libraries. Reading this on Thanksgiving? Feel free to offer what you are thankful for in the comments.
Two serious threads this week and one fun one. The first serious story is a look at the attitudes of e-book consumers from the Book Industry Study Group, including a finding that almost half of all e-book consumers would wait for an electronic edition up to three months after the print edition has been released. The second serious story is about a university press starting to sell excerpts from backlist titles as a way to capitalize on existing content. And finally, the fun story is a 12 minute TED talk from the founder of the Improv Everywhere project.
This blog will be participating in the American Censorship Day awareness campaign on Wednesday, November 16, 2011 to show opposition to the Stop Online Piracy Act (H.R.3261). There is an effort in the U.S. Congress to give power to the Department of Justice to disrupt the domain name service (DNS – the bit of internet infrastructure that makes human-readable things like “dltj.org” meaningful to machines) and order websites and search engines to remove links to targeted services (among other things). This legislation is supported in large part by the content creation industries to “address today’s gravest threat to the American film industry workforce: the illegal distribution of content online.”1
- From the Motion Picture Association of America. Citation: IFTA: Jennifer Garnick, NATO: Patrick Corcoran, MPAA: Howard Gantman, Deluxe: Cathy Main, (2011, October 26). Creative Community Hails New Bipartisan House Legislation to Shut Down Rogue Websites that Steal American-Made Content. Retrieved October 31, 2011, from MPAA. [↩]
In this weeks thread of topics: the final report of library linked data, an interview with one of the executives of Wiley Publishing, important questions to ask when considering major system migrations, and the announcement of work to begin on a new comment and evaluation overlay layer for the web.
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