LPC Blog

The Library Publishing Coalition Blog is used to share news and updates about the LPC and the Library Publishing Forum, to draw attention to items of interest to the community, and to publish informal commentaries by LPC members and friends.

February 1, 2024

2024 Library Publishing Forum registration and updates

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Registration for the 2024 Library Publishing Forum is now open! This year’s Forum will be held on May 15-16 at McNamara Alumni Center at the University of Minnesota, Minneapolis. More information about registration, including rates and refund policies, can be found on the Registration & Travel Information page.

We have also begun adding travel information, including information about hotels and transportation options in Minneapolis.

And we are very excited to announce a Forum affiliated event: PKP will be hosting a Sprint and Pre-Conference Event on Monday, May 13 and Tuesday, May 14, to be held at the University of Minnesota Libraries, Wilson Library. PKP Sprints are interactive events where our community works together to improve our open-source software. This is the first PKP Sprint in North America since 2019 and not to be missed!

A full-day sprint is planned for Monday, followed by a half-day pre-conference on Tuesday.

To learn more about the PKP Sprint and Pre-Conference Event, please see the Save the Date announcement.

 


January 31, 2024

Full COVID Policy for the 2024 Library Publishing Forum

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Goal

LPC’s goal for the 2024 Library Publishing Forum is to encourage the safest possible in-person conference environment through careful planning and mutual care. 

Although public concern has waned, COVID-19 is still a serious health risk. Even otherwise healthy individuals are at risk for complications and for long COVID, and those risks increase with repeated infections. For individuals with weakened immune systems or other vulnerabilities, the risks are heightened significantly.

We acknowledge that an in-person event will inevitably carry a higher level of risk than a virtual one, and that even the most careful precautions may not reduce the risk enough for some community members to attend safely. For that and other reasons, we will continue to alternate in-person events with fully virtual ones.  

Planning

Our planning team is working to create the safest possible conference environment through attention to the following areas: 

Ventilation and air filtration

McNamara Alumni Center was built to meet the codes that prevailed at that time. The original design of the system dictates maximum MERV capabilities, which currently is use of a MERV 13 air filter. Air changes depend on the number of people and the pressure in the building. Spring and fall typically have the highest percentage of outside air in comparison to the coldest or hottest days of the year that the minimum air requirements were designed for.

Spaces within the venue

Because we are planning for a lower number of attendees than the space typically accommodates, we can have fewer tables and ask to have them spread out. Boxed lunches will be provided on both days, so attendees can choose to take their lunch elsewhere. There are about 12-15 small tables located outside the Alumni Center on a first-come first-served basis. Because meals will take place in the same location as the main conference session, risk of transmission will be heightened at sessions immediately following meal and snack times 

Provision of masks and tests

We will provide masks and rapid COVID self-tests for all attendees.

Reliable information and clear communication

We encourage attendees and potential attendees to reach out to us with questions and concerns by emailing contact@librarypublishing.org

Mutual care

Mutual care will help provide a safer conference environment. Below, we have laid out a number of strategies for mutual care and we encourage attendees to utilize as many of them as possible. We aren’t mandating particular strategies across the board, because there will be community members for whom any particular intervention isn’t possible (e.g., individuals who cannot be vaccinated or who cannot wear a mask for an extended period of time). However, attendees are encouraged to do as many of these things as they are able and to do their best to care for their fellow conference-goers.  Individuals are expected to isolate from other attendees if they are sick.

Vaccination

We will strongly encourage all attendees to receive up-to-date vaccines against COVID at least two weeks prior to the event. According to the CDC (at the time this policy was written), you’re up to date on your COVID vaccine if you received an updated vaccine after September 12, 2023. 

Masking

We strongly encourage attendees to wear masks whenever possible. We will make medical-grade masks (KN95 or similar) available throughout the event, and we encourage all attendees who are able to wear them whenever they aren’t eating, drinking, or presenting. 

The venue is part of the UMN campus, and it will include staff, attendees of other events, and potentially members of the public who may or may not be masked.

Testing

Although rapid COVID self-tests are not currently a reliable indicator of whether someone is infected (because of the prevalence of false negative results), they are a fairly reliable indicator of whether an individual is contagious on the day they take the test.(1) We will make tests available (one per attendee per day of the conference) and encourage all attendees to test each morning before coming to the venue. Further information will be posted and/or sent to attendees when available.

Isolating

Individuals who test positive or who are experiencing any moderate or severe symptoms of COVID are expected to isolate from other attendees. This means not attending conference sessions in person, and not gathering for social events with other attendees during the conference. 

Policy updates

This policy was designed based on conditions during early 2024. We are posting it in advance of the conference so that attendees can make an informed decision about their attendance, and we won’t make changes to it lightly. However, this policy is subject to change based on national trends and/or in accordance with CDC updates to guidelines and regulations. We will notify attendees of any changes as soon as possible. 

Contact

Questions about this policy? Please email contact@librarypublishing.org

 

(1)  Lopera TJ, Alzate-Ángel JC, Díaz FJ, Rugeles MT, Aguilar-Jiménez W. The Usefulness of Antigen Testing in Predicting Contagiousness in COVID-19. Microbiol Spectr. 2022 Apr 27;10(2):e0196221. doi: 10.1128/spectrum.01962-21. Epub 2022 Mar 29. PMID: 35348350; PMCID: PMC9045251. https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/35348350/ 


January 30, 2024

February is the return of Documentation Month!

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What would happen if you won the lottery and could leave your job tomorrow? What information would the next person doing your job need to have? What information would you leave behind to help that person pick up where you leave off?: Documentation!

Documentation is important because it helps to preserve institutional memory, allows future you to get up to speed, and can be a useful resource to share with colleagues. Yet this important activity is often neglected. Whether you’re not sure where to begin or because we’re all faced with perennial deadlines and constant day-to-day tasks, documentation all too often falls to the bottom of our to-do lists. To give everyone a chance to focus on documentation, the Professional Development Committee is hosting its fourth-annual Documentation Month this February!

Documentation toolkit

To support the community in creating documentation, members of LPC’s Professional Development Committee have created a Library Publishing Documentation Toolkit. It consists of four sections: Getting started with documentation, Planning a documentation day, Suggested documentation projects to tackle, and Sharing documentation beyond your institution. The toolkit is available in PDF and as a Google Doc.   

Workshops/Community Calls

We will also be hosting a series of workshops/community calls focused on the theme of documentation and accessibility. We have four calls planned for four Thursdays in February: 

  • PDF Accessibility and Documentation, Thursday, February 1st (2-3 p.m. Eastern) with Angel Peterson

  • Video Content Accessibility and Documentation, Thursday, February 8th (2-3 p.m. Eastern) with Matt Vaughn

  • Google Docs Accessibility Documentation, Thursday, Feb 15th (2-3 p.m. Eastern) with Erin Jerome and Adam Mazel

  • Accessibility and your Campus Institutional Repository: A Conversation, Thursday, Feb 29th (2-3 p.m. Eastern) with Carmen Mitchell and Amy Carpenter 

Scheduling information and call details for these events will be sent out each week to the listserv. Please feel free to share widely within your institution, but these calls are open to LPC member libraries only, so please do not share outside the community. 

Happy documenting! 

From the Documentation Month planning group (Erin Jerome, Adam Mazel, and Matt Vaughn) on behalf of the LPC Professional Development Committee.

 


January 24, 2024

Affiliate Spotlight: Association of University Presses (AUPresses)

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LPC’s Strategic Affiliates Program connects our community with peer membership communities working in libraries, publishing, and scholarly communications. LPC’s leadership has regular touch base calls with each of our affiliates and occasionally invites their leadership to group discussions on topics of broad interest. This work helps us to support the ‘community of communities,’ to align our work and to avoid duplication of effort. However, it is largely invisible to LPC’s membership. To recognize our affiliates’ contributions to our community, and to connect our members to resources and opportunities in peer communities, we are publishing a series of Affiliate Spotlights on the blog in 2024. 

 

About

Name: Association of University Presses (AUPresses)
Website: https://aupresses.org/
X (Twitter): @aupresses
Strategic affiliate since: 2017

AUPresses is an organization of 160 international nonprofit scholarly publishers. Since 1937, the Association of University Presses advances the essential role of a global community of publishers whose mission is to ensure academic excellence and cultivate knowledge. The Association holds intellectual freedom, integrity, stewardship, and equity and inclusion as core values. AUPresses members are active across many scholarly disciplines, including the humanities, arts, and sciences, publish significant regional and literary work, and are innovators in the world of digital publishing.

Resources

We asked our affiliates to identify some of their resources that may be of interest to the LPC community.

Collaborations

AUPresses and LPC regularly work together on envisioning the future of university-based publishing. The AUPresses Library Relations Committee frequently proposes Library Publishing Forum panels. We collaborate to support diversity and inclusion initiatives as members of C4DISC.


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January 16, 2024

Collaborative, Strategic, Innovative: Consortial Publishing with PALNI Press

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Consortial publishing profiles is an occasional series highlighting library publishing programs that offer centralized publishing services to multiple institutions within a geographic region or a consortium


By Amanda Hurford, PALNI Scholarly Communications Director

Getting Started

The Private Academic Library Network of Indiana (PALNI) is an organization owned by 24 small private colleges, universities, and seminaries working under the tagline “Collaborative, Strategic, Innovative.” In 2015, the idea behind one manifestation of those values took root: the PALNI Press library publishing program. PALNI’s Institutional Repository Advisory Group, a team of librarians investigating shared repository services, proposed establishing and piloting shared instances of popular open-source publishing platforms. When PALNI added a full-time position dedicated to supporting scholarly communication initiatives to its staff in 2017, it was the right time to formally support the creation of journals, exhibits, textbooks, and more. As PALNI’s first Scholarly Communications Director, I soon convened a Library Publishing Task Force to explore creating a more robust publishing service by addressing structure, benefits, needs, and plans for the future. In this findings report, the Task Force recommended the establishment of an ongoing team to support the PALNI Press service. The Publishing Services Administration Team was formed to design library publishing policies, provide services, and engage with the Library Publishing Coalition.

Focus and Scope

The PALNI Press and its related teams support publishing open-access content in various formats: repository materials like ETDs and gray literature, exhibits, journals, and books. The service is open to faculty, staff, and students affiliated with any of PALNI’s institutions who want to publish to support their institution’s teaching and learning objectives. We provide “basic level services,” including initial consultation and project setup, introductory education on publishing-related topics, platform hosting and maintenance, data backup, and documentation to use the systems. Additionally, we provide limited support for each publishing platform, including troubleshooting, training, and help with workflow design. Finally, we offer some discovery services by creating MARC records and assigning ISBNS and DOIs, and we also provide print-on-demand services through Amazon Kindle Direct Publishing. A subset of our work is the PALSave Textbook Creation Grant initiative, in which we collaborate with faculty authors to publish open textbooks. We provide author stipends for those projects and coordinate peer review and copyediting for a polished final product.

Technical Setup

PALNI Press is built on a suite of publishing platforms: Samvera Hyku for repository content, Omeka S for exhibits, Open Journal Systems for journals, and Pressbooks for books. Except for the Hyku repository, hosted by Software Services by Scientist.com, PALNI self-hosts all its platforms. The PALNI Development Team handles installation, maintenance, and troubleshooting.

Staffing and Finances

Staffing for the program consists primarily of my role as Scholarly Communications Director, which also is responsible for leadership in other scholarly communications initiatives, and a distributed team of librarians providing support across the consortium. We rely on PALNI’s part-time Development Team for technical expertise, as well as input and help provided by members of the PALNI community with expertise in this area. PALNI’s Strategic Communications Director includes marketing services like writing press releases and web design for our catalog. PALNI’s Cataloging Coordinator catalogs publications when they are completed.  A quarter-time Publishing Services Coordinator and a team of volunteer project managers at PALNI schools support the Textbook Creation Grant initiative. PALNI Press is funded by the consortium’s central budget, with additional dedicated money coming from our PALSave Affordable Learning Program grant from Lilly Endowment Inc. to fund the Textbook Creation Grants, its related staffing, and production costs. Supported institutions can use all the platforms as part of their participation in PALNI — no additional fees are charged above annual PALNI dues.

Governance and Decision Making

The Publishing Services Administration Team created a set of policies to help with governance and decision-making. The group set the mission for the service, eligibility, responsibilities for both contributors and the Press, and guidelines for copyright, privacy, diversity, and accessibility. I consult with the publishing team and PALNI’s Board of Directors on program direction. Each new publication does not require approval but must meet the eligibility requirements and responsibilities listed on the website. Typically, a contributor will propose a publication, and team members will meet with them to discuss expectations before getting started. A separate OER Publishing Task Force set up all the program documentation for the Textbook Creation Grants (such as the call for proposals, application, selection rubric, etc. — all available CC-BY on the project website), and the two programs’ policies complement each other.

Lessons Learned

We learned that exploring the need for consortial publishing services is beneficial. Our task force surveyed library directors about their interest in and barriers to library publishing, which helped to define future directions. Our team also found that it’s been helpful to have policies documented to guide decision-making, and defining and documenting responsibilities is essential. The approach to categorize services into manageable groups made the idea of developing a comprehensive support model seem less daunting. Also, leveraging the talents of all consortial staff and participating librarians is essential to building a service that is not too demanding for any one person. One pitfall to avoid in projects with deadlines is to check in early and often with authors and to ask them to create a writing schedule. 

PALNI is delighted to work with librarians, faculty, and others on this exciting path to library publishing!

 To reach PALNI Press, email press@palni.edu.

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January 11, 2024

Affiliate Spotlight: Society for Scholarly Publishing (SSP)

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LPC’s Strategic Affiliates Program connects our community with peer membership communities working in libraries, publishing, and scholarly communications. LPC’s leadership has regular touch base calls with each of our affiliates and occasionally invites their leadership to group discussions on topics of broad interest. This work helps us to support the ‘community of communities,’ to align our work and to avoid duplication of effort. However, it is largely invisible to LPC’s membership. To recognize our affiliates’ contributions to our community, and to connect our members to resources and opportunities in peer communities, we are publishing a series of Affiliate Spotlights on the blog in 2024. 

About

Name: Society for Scholarly Publishing (SSP)
Website: https://www.sspnet.org/
X (Twitter): @scholarlypub
Strategic affiliate since: 2017

The Society for Scholarly Publishing (SSP), founded in 1978, is a nonprofit organization formed to promote and advance communication among all sectors of the scholarly publication community through networking, information dissemination, and facilitation of new developments in the field.

SSP members represent all aspects of scholarly publishing — including publishers, printers, e-products developers, technical service providers, librarians, and editors. SSP members come from a wide range of large and small commercial and nonprofit organizations. They meet at SSP’s annual meetings, educational seminars, and regional events to hear the latest trends from respected colleagues and to discuss common and mutual (and sometimes divergent) goals and viewpoints.

Resources

We asked our affiliates to identify some of their resources that may be of interest to the LPC community.

SSP has a wealth of resources available to the scholarly communications community for both members and non-members alike. Our informative and influential blog, The Scholarly Kitchen, serves all segments involved in the scholarly publishing community with daily posts about the latest industry topics. The OnDemand library hosts hundreds of recorded webinars and conference sessions, many of which are freely available (newer content available for purchase). We offer a variety of free webinars throughout the year on DEIA topics (via C4DISC), early career professional topics, and our Innovation Showcase which highlights the newest innovations in the industry.

Our job board lists a variety of open positions (including free internship listings) and our interactive Professional Skills Map presents the most frequently reported personal characteristics and interpersonal and technical skills that are essential to success for a variety of roles. On our website, we offer a roundup of publishing ethics resources and a list of publishing and library programs. We currently have three Communities of Interest open to non-members, the Early Career Professionals Networks, the Humanities and Social Science Publishers Network, and the AI in Scholarly Publishing Network.

We welcome a diverse group of scholarly communications professionals including publishers, librarians, funders, researchers, and industry suppliers to our Annual Meeting each year at the end of May/early June. In the fall, we offer the more intimate New Directions Seminar in Washington DC; and monthly webinars connect professionals to latest information on a variety of topics throughout the year.

Collaborations

SSP has been a regular sponsor of the Library Publishing Forum for many years (thanks, SSP!), but otherwise, our most significant collaboration has been through the Coalition for Diversity and Inclusion in Scholarly Communications (C4DISC). C4DISC was started by Melanie Dolechek in her role as SSP Executive Director. LPC has been involved since its founding, but had the opportunity to work most closely with the group during its community formation period, when we contributed Educopia consulting hours to the effort.


December 12, 2023

LPC releases new, 5-year Community Plan

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LPC is excited to announce the publication of our new Community Plan, which will guide our activities from 2024 to 2029. Based on deep engagement with the community over the last year, this brief document centers on four areas of focus:

  • Support community members’ well-being and career longevity in the field of library publishing.
  • Advocate for library publishers and give them the tools to advocate for themselves. 
  • Navigate changes in scholarly output, business models, and infrastructure, through a lens of ethics and collaboration.
  • Continue to develop LPC as an inclusive professional space.

The plan also includes a set of “Principles of Action,” which, used alongside our Vision, Mission, and Values, will help us translate this flexible guidance into concrete action plans as needed.  

Many thanks to our Board for their vision and writing, to LPC’s staff for guiding and supporting the process, to the LPC community for contributing the raw material for the plan, and to Kelly Pendergrast for the design.

Here’s to the next five years of community! 


December 5, 2023

LPC welcomes a new member: William & Mary

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Please join us in welcoming William & Mary as a new member of the Library Publishing Coalition! The voting rep for William and Mary is Rosie Liljenquist.

About William and Mary:

William & Mary is a premier public research university. As one of eight “Public Ivy” institutions and as the second oldest college of higher education in the nation, W&M has a long and proud history of excellence in education, innovation, and research. William & Mary Libraries is excited to venture into more specialized publishing support for faculty/researchers including creating open monographs, hosting journals, supporting digital humanities; self-archiving interdisciplinary reports and gray literature, and more.


November 28, 2023

Ally Laird receives the 2023 LPC Award for Exemplary Service

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On behalf of the LPC Board, we are delighted to announce that the recipient of the 2023 LPC Award for Exemplary Service is Ally Laird, Open Publishing Program Coordinator for Penn State University Libraries. The Award recognizes substantial contributions by an LPC community member to advancing the mission, vision, and values of the Library Publishing Coalition.

Ally was nominated for her significant contributions as Treasurer of the LPC Board during the previous two program years. During this time LPC made substantial changes to its financial structures and processes. Ally supported the Board and the community throughout this challenging transition with diligent analysis and clear communication and, as mentioned in her nomination, “ the end results – solid financial processes, steady membership, and community goodwill – owe much to her work.”

A statement from Ally:

“I feel extremely humbled and honored to have been awarded LPC’s Award for Exemplary Service this year. It was a true pleasure to serve on LPC’s Board and while the work I did as the Treasurer over the past two years, and last year especially, was challenging, I am thankful for the opportunity to help serve our community. The care, thoughtfulness, and support that my fellow Board members and the community provided during the challenging season of having to rethink our financial model and increase our dues for the first time was so exemplary and made my job much easier than it could have been. It’s a beautiful example of why I love and value this community so much! I have grown significantly through my service as Treasurer, and I’m thankful that I was given the opportunity to help our community navigate through this change and help to position the LPC for continued success and stability for years to come. Thank you!”

Ally will receive a complimentary registration to this year’s Library Publishing Forum and a $500 honorarium. She will also be recognized at the Forum.

Please join us in congratulating Ally!

On behalf of the LPC Board
Amanda Hurford, President
Perry Collins, President-Elect
Sonya Betz, Secretary
Justin Gonder, Treasurer
Harrison Inefuku, DEI Officer
Angel Peterson
Elizabeth Scarpelli
Janet Swatscheno
Emma Molls, Past President


November 13, 2023

November 2023 LPC Update

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The November 2023 Library Publishing Coalition Update has been published! In it you’ll find recent news from the Library Publishing Coalition including

Forum News

  • Call for proposals is open
  • Call for applications for Forum Scholarships are open

Community News

  • Version 2.0 of An Ethical Framework for Library Publishing has been published
  • Celebrating 10 years of the Library Publishing Coalition
  • 2022-2023 Annual Report is now available
  • Much more!

Blog Post Spotlights

  • The first in our new series of consortial publishing profiles: Atlanta University Center Robert W. Woodruff Library
  • Finding the Right Publishing Platform
  • The state of the field: An excerpt from the 2023 Library Publishing Directory

Read the Update