ALCTS Liaisons and Representatives Report on Annual 2004 Activities

Editor's note: We are featuring reports on groups outside of ALCTS to which we have formal liaisons, and joint groups with other divisions, in this separate article.

The Hugh C. Atkinson Memorial Award: was given to Jerome Yavarkowsky (Boston College) at the LITA President's Meeting on Monday, June 28, 2004. Since the midwinter meeting, a proposal to revise the charge of the award committee was made to include, among the committee's tasks, the work of soliciting nominations for the award. The proposal was presented to the ALA Awards Committee at the 2004 Annual Conference.

ALA Committee on Professional Ethics (COPE) reviewed and provided ALA Council with feedback on the proposed changes to Intellectual Freedom Policies in the "Intellectual Freedom Manual". COPE also recommended to Council that they not form a new committee or task force focusing on privacy of patron records, since an existing ALA committee is dealing with this issue. COPE also reviewed the Core Values Task Force II draft report. While the report provides a comprehensive list of core values, consensus was that the document outlines ALA's core values not those of the profession. COPE noted that if Council passes this report, the ALA Code of Ethics needs to be revised.

At its June 27th program, COPE presented two skits. One skit addressed ethical issues librarians face when conducting book sales; the other skit presented ethical issues libraries face if staff voice particular political persuasions while manning a public services desk. For its 2005 annual program in Chicago, COPE decided to have a four person panel making positional remarks about possible revision to the ALA Code of Ethics; audience debate/feedback will be actively solicited. In preparation for this meeting, COPE will write a sidebar in a fall issue of American Libraries presenting the possibility of expanding the Code of Ethics to include Core Values issues and to inform ALA members of its 2005 program. COPE also decided to survey library schools to learn about courses offered on ethics and/or ethics related topics. A Web page with links to these course offerings will be mounted on COPE's website. .

ALA Legislative Assembly: The primary business of the meeting was the Legislative Update by the ALA Washington Office staff.

Appropriations update: There is still no FY2005 budget from Congress. ALA's goals for budget appropriations include $232 million for the Library Services and Technology Act (the President's budget calls for $220 million); $100 million for the Improving Literacy Through School Libraries section of the No Child Left Behind Act (President's budget calls for $19.5 million); full funding for the Federal Depository Library Program and the Government Printing Office; and funding for the National Commission on Libraries and Information Science. In general, the ALA Washington Office expects the President's budget to cut Dept. of Education programs that assist libraries.

Copyright update: ALA, along with other U.S. library associations, testified in support of HR107--the Digital Media Consumers' Rights Act. This bill is opposed by the entertainment industry, since it would make it possible to break the technological lock that controls access to and use of copyrighted work if doing so does not result in infringement of the work. The bill would also decriminalize the use and research on anti-circumvention tools when this is for non-infringing use. The House has been working on several bills that would provide copyright protection to databases of factual information that ALA believes belong in the public domain. Publishing companies want stronger protection for their proprietary databases. Five copyright related bills are before Congress, with strong support from the film and recording industries. ALA sees these bills as overly broad and as potential risks for libraries and educational institutions.

USA PATRIOT Act and Privacy: ALA supports the Security and Freedom Ensured (SAFE) Act in the Senate that would restore the pre-PATRIOT Act requirement that the FBI specify records being sought when they apply to the special court for search warrants. This bill would exempt libraries from national security letters and "sunset" in December 2005 sections of PATRIOT that apply to libraries.

Access to Government Information update: ALA supports "Key Principles on Government Information," which state that the public has a right to no-fee access to government information, that the government has an obligation to provide broad public access to its information, that the government is obligated to guarantee the authenticity and integrity of its information, that the government has an obligation to preserve and make its information permanently accessible, and that information created or compiled by government employees or at government expense should remain in the public domain.

Technology and Telecommunications update: The E-rate is still under attack and ALA urges members to contact their members of Congress to support it. ALA opposes extending the Communications Assistance for Law Enforcement Act to Voice Over Internet Protocol. Currently the CALEA is limited to telephone related communication. ALA believes that if it is extended to the Internet that libraries could be forced to spend money to comply with the law, that new internet applications would be subject to compliance authorization by the attorney general, and that libraries might be forced to collect more personal information about Internet users.

Association for Information and Image Management International (AIIM): The AIIM Standards Activity Status Report dated February 27, 2004, is the most recent version supplied by AIIM. It was prepared for the AIIM Standards Week held in conjunction with AIIM's annual conference and exposition in March. The report's first section has 35 pages, and it is arranged by standards committee (usually designated by a number). Each committee has a listing of standards, technical reports, and projects for which the committee is responsible. Often included with items in the listings are brief summaries of work on the items. The second section of the Status Report has six pages. It is a list of standards committees and their standards along with applicable standards documents issued by the International Organization for Standardization (ISO).

During the period January-May 2004, AIIM has considered and asked for votes on standards related to micrographics; public records, libraries and archives. Full details on these votes are available from the ALCTS Newsletter Online editor or AIIM representative Myron Chase.

At the combined C10/C23 meeting in March, the two committees voted to combine under the designation C10, and adopted was a new scope statement: "Responsible for micrographics technology including establishing quality control procedures and quality levels for source documents, engineering and COM microforms, microform formats and specifications of supply items (e.g., physical dimensions and formats for microforms and the packaging of microfilm)." The committee's name is Micrographics.

Also convened during Standards Week 2004 was a new project meeting: Multimedia Documents. The issue proposed for discussion was learning what is needed to create and interchange multimedia documents, including voice, images, text, video, data, slides. A possible outcome from discussions is the launch of an AIIM standards project.

Association of Specialized and Cooperative Library Agencies/Americans With Disabilities Act Assembly has agreed to a name change from ADA Assembly to Accessibility Assembly. A revised mission statement will be drafted by July 15th, and this issue will be addressed at the ASCLA Board meeting in order to gain official endorsement.

Planning has begun on a 2005 Conference program entitled "Access and Universal Design for Libraries." The Assembly is currently looking for co-sponsors and for speakers. A possible co-sponsor might be LSPDHHF (Library Service to People Who Are Deaf or Hard of Hearing Forum).

One member will investigate setting up a listserv for the group through ALA.

Heritage Preservation (The National Institute for Conservation): Heritage Preservation has moved, as of June 28, 2004. New address and contact information is: 1012 14th Street, NW, Suite 1200, Washington, DC 20005.

Heritage Preservation will be distributing its comprehensive survey of preservation needs in cultural heritage institutions, the Heritage Health Index, in July-August 2004. The survey will be sent to nearly 14,000 cultural heritage institutions. Results of the survey are to be published in 2005.

North American Standards Institute (NISO):

NISO standards Z39.20-1999 - Criteria for Price Indexes for Print Library Materials: this standard was up for its five-year review. The balloting period ended January 23, 2004. NISO's Standards Development Committee recommended that it be reaffirmed. Comments included suggestions for additions to the standard but recommended that it be reaffirmed. ALA voted Yes.

Z39.71-1999 - Holdings Statements for Bibliographic Items: this standard was up for its five-year review. The balloting period ended January 23, 2004. NISO's Standards Development Committee recommended that it be reaffirmed. Comments were split, and many substantive comments and suggestions for improvements were submitted. CC:DA and John Hostage recommended that the standard be "reaffirmed and revised" (an option presented in the NISO Procedures for the Development, Approval, and Maintenance of NISO American National Standards), indicating that it should be revised before reaffirming. Since NISO went to an online voting system, this is no longer an option. Available options are reaffirm, withdraw, or abstain. Both SS committees felt that while there were many areas that need improvement, the standard is basically working and many online systems have used it as a basis of development. They recommended reaffirmation. In the end, ALA voted Yes.

Z39.88-200X - OpenURL Framework for Context-Sensitive Services: the balloting period ended March 10, 2004. ALA voted Yes.

Z39.7-200X - Information Services and Use: Metrics & Statistics for Libraries and Information Providers: this is the fourth revision of Z39.7. It addresses electronic resources and is presented as an interactive dictionary. The balloting period ended April 23, 2004. ALA voted Yes.

Metadata Object Description Schema (MODS) Version 3.0: this was NISO's first application for recognition as a NISO Registration. A registration is intended for specifications, guidelines, best practices, and other benchmark documents, and supports lighter-weight review and accreditation than a standard. The balloting period ended May 25, 2004. ALA voted Yes.

ISO DIS 2108 - ISBN (revised to expand from 10 to 13 digits): ALA voted Yes.

ISO 3279 - ISSN: the ISO working group tasked to consider possible changes to the ISSN had its first meeting in January 2004. Working group members conducted a telephone survey in April. The working group met again in May. They are considering four possible scenarios for revision of the ISSN:

  • Scenario A: ISSNs are assigned to each different "medium" (e.g., print vs. electronic) but not to each different "format" (e.g., HTML vs. PDF). This is the current situation, although not all publishers follow it.
  • Scenario B: ISSNs are assigned to a serial publication at the "title" level, to cover all versions. This is essentially making the ISSN a Work identifier.
  • Scenario C: A "base ISSN" is assigned to a serial publication at the title level, but standardized suffixes are used to identify each media version (e.g., ISSN 1234-5678.dvd) and possibly each format (e.g., ISSN 1234-5678.htm).
  • Scenario D: A "master ISSN" is assigned to a serial publication at the title level and separate "secondary ISSNs" are assigned to different media and/or format versions (e.g., ISSN 1234-5678 is assigned to the title, 2345-6789 to the CD version, 3456-7891 to the online version, 4567-8912 to the print version, etc.). Each ISSN would be "dumb" so a database will be needed to link secondary ISSNs to master ISSNs.

On January 16, 2004, NISO announced that Jenny Walker of Ex Libris and Andrew Pace of North Carolina State University had been named to lead the overall planning for the Metasearch Initiative. Three task groups have been formed: Access Management, Collection Description, and Search/Retrieve.

NISO was preparing to update its RFP Writer's Guide to Standards for Library Systems, published in 2002, and asked for comments by January 23, 2004. Comments were received from the RUSA MARS Local Systems and Services Committee and forwarded to NISO.

The Draft Networked Reference Standard supporting Q&A between library users and reference sources was released for a one-year trial use period to last from April 5, 2004 to April 5, 2005.

On May 18, 2004, Priscilla Caplan (co-chair of the NISO/EDITEUR Joint Working Party on the Exchange of Serials Subscription Information) announced that an ONIX for Serials transaction format called the "Serials Release Notification" (SRN) to communicate notification that one or more serial issues and/or articles had been published. Library systems vendors were invited to participate in the project.

NISO held a one-day conference in Washington, D.C., on May 20, 2004. The subject was "Metadata Practices on the Cutting Edge".

North American Serials Interest Group (NASIG): In the recent election, three bylaws changes passed. One changes the terms for Secretary and Treasurer from two- to three-years to allow for a year's transition between officers.

The San Diego midwinter report highlighted many innovations in our recently completed conference: online registration and brochure, tiered rates, program sessions renamed and redesigned, and vendor product sessions.

The 2004 conference award winners have been selected:

  • Horizon Award: Rocki Strader, Ohio State University;
  • NASIG Conference Student Grant (3 this year): Christopher Brady, University of Maryland; Eve Mitt, North Carolina Central University; Andrea Wirth, University of North Texas;
  • Fritz Schwartz Serials Education Scholarship: Sandra Lorraine Wiles, University of Illinois;
  • Marcia Tuttle International Grant: Regina Romano Reynolds, Library of Congress;
  • Mexico Student Conference Grant: Ruth Zamora Pina, Universidad Nacional Autonoma de Mexico, Colegio de Bibliotecologia.

Next year's conference will be May 19-22, 2005, at the Hilton Minneapolis, with a guaranteed room rate of $110 per night. We significantly exceeded our block of room requests in Milwaukee so we should easily meet the fill rate of 75% in Minneapolis. We encourage anyone to suggest a site for future conferences and to consult the checklist for guidelines and conference requirements.

President Steve Savage has appointed two task forces: one for NASIG's 20th anniversary and one for strategic support.

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