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A league table of journals: The Australian government is revising its research assessment system, and is in the process of setting up ERA, Excellence in Research for Australia. This new system was an early commitment of the Labor Government elected in November of last year, and is replacing the Research Quality Framework (RQF) which the previous Government had started to develop in 2006, and which was intended to carve up AU$600 million in block grant research funding. That system did not reach fruition, despite (and partly because of) being very costly. The new system is designed to benchmark Australian research better within an international context, and is - for the moment - not intended to lead to a ranking-based carve-up of the research funding pot, though that option has been left in for the future.
Marketplace from American Public Media
The novel is not dead. Nor is any other kind of book. Self-publishing technology has empowered wanna-be writers -- no matter how strange their pitch. Cash Peters checks out the DIY crowd at a book expo in LA.
Full story here.
Ithaka has recently released the full findings from our 2006 surveys of the behavior and attitudes of faculty members and academic librarians. These complementary studies, co-sponsored by JSTOR and by Ithaka’s incubated entities Portico, Aluka, and NITLE, have been of interest to academic librarians and scholarly publishers alike in presentations over the past year, but now we are making the datasets and a detailed white paper available as well. -- Read More
Librarian and author of memoir "Quiet, Please" speaks out against the author of "The Library Diaries" for publishing her book with Publish America, which he deems "one of the most shameful book producers" around. He also offers to help anyone who wants to publish with a "real" publisher.
Publishers Weekly: A land of paradoxes, the Netherlands. Book trade concentration is little short of horrific. Depending on who you talk to, and whether Belgian Flanders is included in the calculation, two large groups of somewhat similar dimensions hold either 40% or 60% of the book market, while a third group is half as large as either of the first two. Yet it was one of the country's smallest publishers who recognized the potential of Harry Potter. Jaco Groot of De Harmonie, who buys according to his and wife Elsbeth's hunches, has followed J.K. Rowling ever since, and now has a cool million copies of the HP books in print.
According to Bertelsmann Lexicon, there are reasons why people will want to see a print version of the German Wikipedia. Guardian UK reports.
With a price tag of €19.95 , €1 from every Wikipedia Lexikon sold will be given to the German chapter of Wikimedia, the non-profit group behind Wikipedia, for the use of its name.
The publication reverses the industry trend towards the internet and away from traditional print. Publishers of the Wikipedia Lexikon insist it is too soon to say farewell to the book format.
Once upon a time I wrote "while the Kindle buzz has stimulated interest in the legal academy, the development model will not follow along the lines of Kindle" because the digital text-study aid functionality law schools students want is not gizmo-dependent and products are or can be expected to integrate their computer-based apps with online research services." That may change if the forthcoming big screen Kindle catches on because the sheer market presence of Amazon may prove once again that bad technology will trump consumer needs. Read more about it in Big Screen Kindle Aiming for $5.5 Billion Textbook Market at http://lawprofessors.typepad.com/law_librarian_blog/2008/07/big-screen-kind.html
This week's episode is different from the usual fare. The thread holding this together is: "Authors You Didn't Hear at ALA Annual 2008". Authors David Weber and Piers Anthony were interviewed this week. Interviews ranged from talking about their works to how they view libraries to the future of books. The interview with David Weber is being presented in two parts with the remaining portion to air on a future episode. Both authors raised unique points when it comes to determining authorial intent relative to exposing children to their own works that might be otherwise objectionable.
A link is presented below for the Baen Free Library. That site is one where there are complete works available for reading without digital rights management software issues. Works by David Weber and others appear in that collection.
Home page of Piers Anthony
A book by Piers Anthony not for kids
A second book by Piers Anthony not for kids
The Baen Free Library featuring items by David Weber and others
Works by David Weber published by Baen Books
The Honor Harrington Series
US Transition to Digital Television Broadcasting Info Site
Home page of Erie Looking Productions
An interesting tweet on Twitter -- Read More
The UK's biggest publisher, Hachette Livre UK, is leading the charge against Amazon, which it claims is squeezing the market and demanding too great a share of sales. The Telegraph reports on the gathering storm.
Chair of the Society of Authors Tracy Chevalier, author of Girl With a Pearl Earring, called for a strike against Amazon. She said: "To punish the author so publicly and so humiliatingly is really not on. I hope other publishers join Hachette and basically strike against Amazon to say there is only so far you can push us before you break us and we are not going to take it any more."