20 Feb 2024

Libfocus Link-out for February 2024

Welcome to the February edition of the Libfocus link-out, an assemblage of library-related things we have found informative, educational, thought-provoking and insightful on the Web over the past while.

Various images show: book cover with the title gender queer, man taking selfie in the library, petrie dish, illustration of hand controlling puppet strings beside people sitting and talking by a table, woman reading outside with a dog on her lap, a redacted document headed government of Ontario and Sunlight project, a graphic with a megaphone that reads library marketing for library marketers
Images featured in this month's link out articles

Books and looks: gen Z is ‘rediscovering’ the public library.
This Guardian article by Alaina Demopoulos investigates why Gen Z and millennials are using public libraries at higher rates than older generations. Libraries have become community hubs for these groups, but will they help libraries with the challenges they face?

Investigative Journalism Bureau and University of Toronto Libraries release new public repository of Ontario freedom-of-information requests.
The Sunlight Project is a database of the freedom-of-information requests made to Ontario's provincial government since 2014. The project allows anyone to discover the existence of the revelatory data and documents contained in records that have already been released and file their own requests to obtain them.

Reading: It Can’t Be About the Numbers.
How many books do we read per year? And does that matter? The author asks how we should understand “reading.”

Paper Trail.
This article explains how tens of millions of dollars flow to the paper mill industry each year, damaging research integrity in the process.

‘The situation has become appalling’: fake scientific papers push research credibility to crisis point.
Robin McKie looks at the influx of fake research papers entering online journal databases, with 10,000 papers retracted by academic journals in 2023.

Do disappearing data repositories pose a threat to open science and the scholarly record?
Research data repositories play a vital role in ensuring research is reproducible, replicable and reusable. Yet, the infrastructure supporting them can be impermanent. Drawing on a new dataset Strecker,  Pampel, Schabinger and Weisweiler, explore how common data repository shutdowns are and suggest what can be done to ensure data preservation in the long-term.

Cast as Criminals, America’s Librarians Rally to Their Own Defense.
As libraries become battlegrounds in the nation’s culture wars, their allies are fighting to preserve access to their collections and keep themselves out of jail, or worse.

Library Marketing for Library Marketers.
This is an informal library marketing podcast for library staff who do all things marketing, communications, public relations, outreach, and more. Join your host, Katie Rothley, as she chats with various experts, library staff, marketing professionals, and other library marketers who share tips, tricks, tools, insights, and more.

Libraries and the need for AI ethics.
Research has shown that most university librarians have a moderate understanding of AI concepts and principles and formal ethics training is required.

Report on the European landscape of institutional publishing.
The EU funded DIMAS (Developing Institutional Open Access Publishing Models to Advance Scholarly Communication) provides a clear picture of the European landscape of institutional publishing and ways to further strengthen such initiatives.

Decolonising and diversifying the Library through student partnerships.
This case study looks at the work to develop initiatives to diversify Warwick University Library’s collections, spaces and services, carried out in conjunction with our key student partners, Warwick’s Library Associates. It explores the origins of the voluntary Library Associates scheme, with an emphasis on working in true partnership with students, to deliver library improvements in line with their priorities and those of their peers. It examines the process of co-creating interventions to aid diversifying and demonstrates the role of the students as drivers for the initiatives. It discusses the ongoing work to be done to meaningfully diversify the Library and involves the student voice in the reporting of the project.

Building Community: Supporting Minoritized Scholars through Library Publishing and Open and Equitable Revenue Models.
With the growth of open access (OA) journal publishing, a myriad of funding models has emerged to serve as an alternative to the traditional subscription model. Models that impose author facing charges are inequitable, favouring well-resourced authors and institutions, and continue the dominance of publications from the Global North. This exploratory study critically examines the current state of funding OA journal publishing and the disruptive role of library publishing programs. We conclude with a discussion of the potential of the LYRASIS Open Access Community Investment Program as a tool to support library publishing programs to sustainably fund inclusive OA journal publishing.


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