Before the Internet made information access faster and easier (and it continues to improve), libraries were already mass-sharing information through interlibrary loan. Interlibrary loan is such a simple concept–libraries share books with other libraries–but it was and continues to be carefully planned and implemented to ensure availability and access through cooperative collection plans, lists of records and methods for disseminating them (National Union Catalog, publishing bibliographies of what books were where), and agreements to make sure users know about the materials in order to request them. Thanks to interlibrary loan systems everywhere for making information available and accessible. Making information findable, available, and usable isRead More →

UF’s Florida Free Culture student group will be having it’s first meeting of the semester on Monday, October 13, at 7:00 pm in Reitz Union 288. FFC is an organization that advocates for copyright law reform, the use of open source software, and fights for your rights online. Free food will be provided! For more information about FFC, see their website: While I can’t make this meeting, I’d recommend it to anyone who can. FFC is a great advocacy group to promote awareness and as a ways for finding the means to do needed work. Copyright law reform is desperately needed, as is aRead More →

************(Press Release)************ The Scholarly Publishing Office of the University of Michigan Library is pleased to announce the availability of a new open access monograph, Economics and Usage of Digital Libraries: Byting the Bullet, edited by Wendy Pradt Lougee (University Librarian, University of Minnesota) and Jeffrey K. MacKie-Mason (Arthur W. Burks Collegiate Professor of Information and Computer Science, School of Information, University of Michigan). In the late 1990’s, researchers and digital  library production staff at the University of Michigan collaborated on deploying the Pricing Economic Access to Knowledge project (PEAK), a full-scale production-quality digital access system to enable usage of content  from all of Elsevier’s (thenRead More →

Washington, DC – August 28, 2008 – SPARC (the Scholarly Publishing and Academic Resources Coalition), the Public Library of Science (PLoS), and Students for FreeCulture have jointly announced the first international Open Access Day. Building on the worldwide momentum toward Open Access to publicly funded research, Open Access Day will create a key opportunity for the higher education community and the general public to understand more clearly the opportunities of wider access and use of content. Open Access Day will invite researchers, educators, librarians, students, and the public to participate in live, worldwide broadcasts of events. In North America, events will be held at 7:00Read More →

The First Executive Director of the Open Content Alliance has been appointed and CIDE (Data Intensive Cyber Environments group) has joined the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill’s School of Information and Library Science. These are two recent news releases that show the expanding happenings and possibilities for digital libraries, collections, and collaboration! *** Maura Marx Named First Executive Director of the Open Content Alliance The Internet Archive and the Alfred P. Sloan Foundation announced today the appointment of Maura Marx as the first Executive Director of the Open Content Alliance (OCA). A search committee representing OCA member institutions made the appointment after anRead More →

I just saw this announcement and it’s great news, so I’m sharing! Open Access has done so much and has so much to, so more support is always wonderful. Open Access Directory: A wiki to organize information about the open access movement Boston, April 30, 2008. Peter Suber and Robin Peek have launched the Open Access Directory (OAD), a wiki where the open access community can create and maintain simple factual lists about open access to science and scholarship. Suber, a Research Professor of Philosophy at Earlham College, and Peek, an Associate Professor of Library and Information Science at Simmons College, conceived the project inRead More →

Washington, DC & CHICAGO ­ April 22, 2008 ­ SPARC (the Scholarly Publishing and Academic Resources Coalition) and the Association of College and Research Libraries (ACRL) announce that the SPARC-ACRL Forum during the 2008 American Library Annual Conference in Anaheim, Calif., will provide a timely look at Campus Open Access Policies: The Harvard Experience and How to Get There. Co-sponsored by the Association for Library Collections and Technical Services up-close look at the recent vote by Harvard¹s Faculty of Arts and Sciences enabling open access to their scholarly articles in an institutional repository.The Harvard vote grants the university the rights necessary to archive and makeRead More →

In working on other projects, I stumbled across this poster on the Digital Library of the Caribbean from last year. The Digital Library of the Caribbean (dLOC) is a cooperative digital library for resources from and about the Caribbean and circum-Caribbean. All materials in dLOC are Open Access for everyone to see, but any rights remain with the owners or with the contributing partners. This is a great example of collaboration creating materials for all to use, while supporting the creators and their communities and nations. The digitized materials include Caribbean cultural, historical and research materials currently held in archives, libraries, and private collections. TheRead More →

While it’s a bit late, January 1 is normally the magical day when new items pass into the public domain. It doesn’t mean too much for the United States–and in fact it won’t mean much until 2019 because of the way our copyright laws are designed–but it’s still something to celebrate. Everybody’s Libraries has a nice overview of January 1’s significance and new gifts to the public domain. For anyone holding copyright, Creative Commons has ready-made licenses available for easy use to ensure that new works are available before 2019. UF’s Digital Library Center also has handy forms for granting Internet Distribution permissions to UF.Read More →

The technology and popular culture criticism blog Boing Boing had a recent post on search rankings. It mentions that five years ago, a bet was made that blogs would rank higher than the New York Times website. This indeed came true, largely because the New York Times chose to restrict their content through a signup and paid subscriptions rather than to make the information free. Now, the New York Times has changed their methods and made their site open, but they’ve already lost out on the advertising revenue and on the reputation value for being a free information source. In an online environment, information thatRead More →