Day/Time: Friday, May 14, 1:15 PM to 2:15 PM


How to cooperate with Sci-Hub and Libgen (if at all) ?

Presenter:

  • Mikael Böök, IFLA (personal affiliate)

Description:

The Sci-Hub service and the Libgen repository are two widely used ‘shadow libraries’ (Karaganis  2018) that provide open access to millions of research articles and books. As the epithet ‘shadow libraries’ suggests, they are controversial. Most articles and books are pirated and re-published online in violation of applicable copyright. This has led to a high-profile lawsuit and even to suspicions of theft of state secrets (Washington Post, Dec 20, 2019). However, their continuing existence and growth alongside the officially sanctioned  OA-movement is a fact, and many (most?) scholars and researchers evidently need  them (Bohannan 2016) Hence the librarians find themselves cought between pirates and publishers (The Chronicle, Feb 18, 2016).

This talk wants to start a thought experiment. Suppose that the libraries and the ‘shadow libraries’ are both acting under the Mertonian institutional imperatives of science (Merton 1942, 1967) and working towards the same goal,  a universal research library and scientific commons. Should they not then both understand that ‘if you can’t beat them, join them?’ The aim of this presentation is to list problems and solutions that may follow if this view is adopted.


“Transformative Agreements” & Library Publishing: A Short Examination

Presenter:

  • Dave S. Ghamandi, University of Virginia

Description:

Library publishing is continually shaped by the goals of their parent institutions as well as outside organizations, namely the commercial publishing oligopoly. The emergence of “transformative agreements” (“TAs”) represents a new relationship between universities and commercial journal publishers. However, the motivations behind these agreements and the effects they may have on library publishing remain largely unexplored. In this presentation, I will critically examine “TAs” from the perspective of a library publisher and share three major analytical takeaways. First, I will compare how “TAs” and library publishers treat the means of production. Who owns and controls the publishing infrastructure and what effects does that have? Secondly, how do “TAs” and library publishing represent different categories of reform? Lastly, I will discuss how the differences between “TAs” and library publishing highlight and heighten the contradictions within research universities. Hopefully, participants will be able to use this analysis to advocate for library publishing in compelling ways within and across our respective institutions.