deborah: the Library of Congress cataloging numbers for children's literature, technology, and library science (Default)
I'm so honored to be on the ALSC/Booklist/YALSA Odyssey award for excellence in audiobook production selection committee for 2013. I won't be able to talk about it, but rest assured I am listening to some amazing audiobooks.

Andrea Horbinski's "Madge, in Thy Orisons…", over at the Transformative Works and Cultures Symposium blog, starts with the fascinating ways in which Madonna's Super Bowl halftime performance was clearly drawing upon Luminosity's 300 vid, and comes to some thought-provoking conclusions about the limitations of transformative works:
My point here is not so much that all of this is anything new (it’s not), but rather that viewing the vid and the halftime show together provides a textbook example of the ways in which fandom (and any pop culture critique based in pop culture itself), and vidding in particular, is limited by its working, in some senses, with found objects.


The Free Government Information Blog, in light of the shutdown of Scroogle, talks about privacy-protecting search engines. I've personally come to love Duck Duck Go -- I came for the privacy and stayed for the simplicity and usability.
deborah: The management regrets that it was unable to find a Gnomic Utterance that was suitably irrelevant. (gnomic)
On my private list labeled "really? I wanted my coworkers and colleagues to know these things about me?" is that I apparently write parody romance well enough to win ArchivesNext's hilarious archivist romance contest in the "Cold-Hearted Career Woman" category. Thanks so much for running the contest, Kate and the panel of intrepid judges!

On an entirely different note, the Archivist of the United States just posted "How to Be a Smooth Criminal", archival patent secrets of Michael Jackson's dance moves. Archives are awesome, yo.

And Karen Hellekson over at the Transformative Works and Cultures symposium posts about "Persistence and DOIs, addressing the reasons why one could want to use an external persistent URL provider but the difficulties one can run into when doing so. Thought-provoking.
deborah: the Library of Congress cataloging numbers for children's literature, technology, and library science (Default)
Over at the Transformative Works and Cultures blog, TWC editor Karen Hellekson has posted an excellent essay "Breaking the primacy of print". Karen asks why online-only peer-reviewed journals are valued less than peer-reviewed journals with a print presence, when the delivery medium has nothing to do with the rigorous miss of the scholarship. TWC, in particular, is a multimedia-rich scholarly journal, for which a print presence would be a watered down equivalent.
deborah: Kirkus Reviews: OM NOM NOM BRAINS (kirkus)
I just wrote a scathing review of a debut novel, which made me feel like crap. But I followed it up with a starred review for a different debut novel, which made it all more than okay. *hugs the good one*

Incidentally, the fourth issue of Transformative Works and Cultures, a special issue on Supernatural, was just released. This issue includes an interview I conducted with the administrative team of the Super-wiki. It was a fascinating interview for me to conduct. Although I know a fair amount about administering fannish wikis, I know almost nothing about Supernatural or its fannish community, and the interviewees quite gracefully schooled me about my incorrect assumptions about their community and their goals.
deborah: the Library of Congress cataloging numbers for children's literature, technology, and library science (Default)
Oh, happiness. The open access, peer-reviewed fan studies journal Transformative Works and Cultures has just released its debut issue. A large crowd of volunteers and contributors has worked very hard to make this happen -- neither editor of the journal has institutional support, so their achievement is particularly impressive.

Of course I'm thrilled about adding a new open access journal to scholarship. Both the social sciences and humanities have far too few OA journals. And of course, I'm particularly smug about some of the things I brought in. DOIs might not seem such a big deal to those of you who are librarians and archivists, but think about how difficult it can be to have your library's databases provide links to material on the open web. And of course, from a preservation perspective DOIs will keep our articles accessible even if the infrastructure changes. For example, if we change our backend software so it is no longer the Open Journal Systems, our URLs might change but our DOIs will remain the same. Once we have the requisite number of published issues, I look forward to seeing our journal indexed in a large variety of indexing and abstracting services.

But one of the most exciting things about this journal is that it is fully multimedia, taking advantage of the online medium -- and of the journal is prepared to stand behind its assertions of fair use for some of the multimedia clips used. For example, Francesca Coppa's "Women, Star Trek, and the Early Development of Fannish Vidding" embeds both images and video, and Bob Rehak's "Fan Labor Audio Feature Introduction" includes audio clips from a workshop discussion at the 2008 Console-ing Passions conference that was inspired by the Gender and Fan Culture discussion (in which I was a participant) and Henry Jenkins' blog in 2007. And even the journal software itself encourages participatory culture; the software allows (and we encourage) commenting by readers.

Press Release )

The call for papers for No. 2 is available as an .rtf file here. Do disseminate widely!
deborah: the Library of Congress cataloging numbers for children's literature, technology, and library science (Default)
I've been getting increasingly concerned about what I see as a too-shallow view of sustainability in digital preservation. There's been a lot of lip service paid over the last few years to preservation, and I have certainly heard talks by grant-funding agencies in which they explained that they are now only funding grants which have sustainability written into the grant structure. Yet time and time again, I see soft money being awarded to projects for which the project administrators clearly have only the vaguest idea of what sustainability really means in a software environment.

I don't see this as anyone's fault, mind you. Software developers and IT folks aren't used to thinking of software projects in terms of Permanence. In the traditional software world, the only way something is going to be around forever is if it's going to be used all that time -- for example, a financial application which is in constant use needs to be constantly up. But archival digital preservation has a very different sense of permanence. For us, permanence might mean that you build a digital archival collection once, don't touch its content again for 10 years, but can still discover all of its preserved content at the end of those 10 years.

Meanwhile, in Internet time, a project which has been around for two years is clearly well past its prime and ready to be retired.

Repository managers are putting all of this great work into the repository layer* of preservation: handles and DOIs, PRESERV and PRONOM, JHOVE and audit trails and the RLG checklist. But meanwhile, all of these collections of digital objects -- many of them funded by limited-duration soft money -- are running on operating systems which will need to be upgraded and patched as time passes, on hardware which will need to be upgraded and repaired as time passes, on networks which require maintenance. Software requires sustenance and maintenance, and no project which doesn't take into account that such maintenance requires skilled technical people in perpetuity can succeed as perpetual preservation. Real sustainability means commitment from and communication with the programmers and sysadmins. It requires the techies understand an archivist's notion of "permanence", and the librarians and archivists (and grant agencies) understand how that a computer needs more than electricity to keep running -- it needs regular care and feeding.

(This, by the way, is one of the reasons I'm so excited by the OTW Archive of One's Own and the Transformative Works and Cultures journal. The individuals responsible for the archive and the journal *do* have a real understanding of and commitment to permanence down to the hardware and network provider level. Admittedly, it's a volunteer-run, donation supported organization, so its sustainability is an open question. But it's a question the OTW Board is wholeheartedly investigating, because they understand its importance.)

*I'm somewhat tempted to make an archival model of preservation that follows the layered structue of the OSI model of network communication. Collection policy layer, Accession layer, Content layer, Descriptive Metadata layer, Preservation Metadata layer, Application Layer, Operating System layer, Hardware layer. Then you could make sure any new preservation project has all of those checkboxes ticked. Sort of an uber-simplification of the RLG Checklist, in a nice, nerd-friendly format.
deborah: the Library of Congress cataloging numbers for children's literature, technology, and library science (Default)
Transformative Works and Cultures (TWC) is a Gold Open Access international peer-reviewed journal published by the Organization for Transformative Works edited by Kristina Busse and Karen Hellekson.

TWC publishes articles about popular media, fan communities, and transformative works, broadly conceived. We invite papers on all related topics, including but not limited to fan fiction, fan vids, mashups, machinima, film, TV, anime, comic books, video games, and any and all aspects of the communities of practice that surround them. TWC’s aim is twofold: to provide a publishing outlet that welcomes fan-related topics, and to promote dialogue between the academic community and the fan community.

CFP behind link for length )

The call for papers is available as a .pdf download sized for US Letter or European A4. Please feel free to link, download, print, distribute, or post.




Additionally, much thanks to Peter Suber, for blogging us so promptly. Heck, much thanks to Peter Suber regardless, just for his tireless efforts on behalf of Open Access.
deborah: the Library of Congress cataloging numbers for children's literature, technology, and library science (Default)
There's a lot of been meaning to post about in my far-too-busy life:

  • There's my new position as review editor for the newly forming, Gold Open Access, peer reviewed journal Transformative Works and Cultures. And by the way, yay!

  • There is the research I have been doing into romance fiction and the wonderfully supportive blogging and mailing list community of other academics doing that research.

  • There's the sequel I recently reviewed where I realized that the sentiments of my negative review of book one had been given to a minor villain of book two, in a dubious but solidly entertaining form of fame.



But what I find I am primarily focused on right now is being happy at work. People keep offered me all these fabulous opportunities which I am turning down -- inviting me to present at conference panels, asking me to write papers, encouraging me to join committees. I know I'm turning down opportunities to make a bigger deal of myself in my career or my various academic avocations. Yet I find I don't care. I really like my manager, and I like my coworkers, and I like my commute. I'm not married to my day-to-day job tasks but that's really not a problem for me. I know what I'm doing is somewhat important, and if the actual tasks aren't overwhelmingly fulfilling, the environment I'm doing them in is so comfortable that I'm perfectly happy.

This is odd for me. I spent a long time wanting to Be Somebody. I read a lot of other librarian, archivist, and Library 2.0 blogs which are (quite reasonably) concerned with conferences and presentations and career building and networking at all of those things that I know are really important. And if I ever had any aspirations as a career academic, than all of the academic connections that I'm making would absolutely matter more than they do to me right now.

For right now I have a low-intensity job with people I like and respect in an interesting academic environment, and that's enough for me. Well, that and my thoroughly overloaded plate of extracurriculars.
Page generated Oct. 18th, 2017 11:50 pm
Powered by Dreamwidth Studios