I had a great time testing out the new Rosen Online Publishing interface, Rosen Learning Center. This center currently features 12 titles that spotlight Texas. History, government, land, resources, and missions are just a few of the topics covered in the 12 titles, which are designed for 3rd grade reading levels. The books meet the TEKS Standards (Texas Essential Knowledge & Skills Standards). The interactive books offer a wonderful variety of options including: Continue reading
This post was reprinted in full from the Points of Reference blog at Booklistonline.com.
Each year at the ALA Annual Conference, Booklist’s Reference Books Bulletin sponsors a program to discuss various topics related to reference and reference publishing. This year RBB’s session focused on the process of creating a reference work, from idea to reality. The speakers included Casper Grathwohl from Oxford University Press, Rolf Janke from SAGE Reference, and Frank Menchaca from Gale/Cengage. The session was moderated by Sue Polanka, Chair of the RBB Editorial Board. Each panelist provided a 15 minute presentation on a particular aspect of the publishing process and a general Q/A followed. I’ll summarize the comments of each panelist below. Continue reading
I’ve had several posts in the last 3 months about interactive online reference – a survey, link to a Charleston Presentation, and now a link to the “Off The Shelf” column in Booklist which highlights interactive online reference (and summarizes the survey and the presentation from Charleston). The article is available at Booklist Online and is also linked from the NSR articles page, along with the other Off The Shelf columns. Happy reading.
The April 1, 2009 “Off The Shelf” column features an article on E-book usage data. The article surveyed 10 e-book vendors and aggregators for information on their usage data. A comparative chart accompanies the article, which is only available online, on the NSR articles page.
7 vendors replied to the survey, 1 couldn’t participate due to usage data restructuring, and 2 did not reply. The 2 no replies serve primarily the public and school library markets, so this usage chart is heavy on academic providers.
I just had a nice conversation with John Barnes, Executive VP Strategic Marketing and Business Development, at Gale/Cengage. I asked John if Gale would be introducing new business models directed towards end users with their recent acquisition of HighBeam. Below is a brief summary of our discussion. Thanks John.
HighBeam’s clients are a combination of students and small businesses.
Gale/Cengage for several years has offered Goliath: Business Knowledge on Demand, which consists of business information, targeted to small business clients.
With the acquisition of HighBeam, Gale now owns encyclopedia.com, which John says, “has untapped potential to connect users to the library.” Their mission, to place “high quality embedded information in front of end users.”
So, rather than a new business model for end users, Gale will continue to make information more discoverable to end-users through encyclopedia.com, Goliath, and their existing AccessMyLibrary product. AccessMyLibrary allows a small slice of InfoTrac to be indexed by search engines. When users “want to see more” they are prompted to enter information about their library, which in turn takes search engine traffic to libraries.
Discoverability. It’s all about end users discovering our content, trapped in that invisible web. I’m anxious to see how Gale can embed quality content into encyclopedia.com. Wishful thinking, but maybe in time this could rival Wikipedia, with links to scholarly resources and digital and special library collections.
For more on discoverability, read John’s (and other reference publishers) comments in these articles in Booklist Online:
The current NSR poll asks, “is your institution using patron driven acquisition to purchase eBooks.” PDA is a business model, offered by (currently) 3 ebook aggregators – NetLibrary, EBL, and Ingram Digital. In this model, patrons determine which eBooks are purchased based on the eBooks they use. There are many variations to PDA, but each variation does allow for librarians to pre-select groups of titles to choose from, establish budgets, and put controls in place to monitor usage and purchases.
Those of you interested in learning more about Follett and Overdrive should take a look at the recent Off The Shelf column in Booklist Online - E-book Distributors for the Public and School Library Markets. The article provides an overview of the content, features, and business models of both of these distributors.
NetLibrary, due to it’s recent transformation, has a feature article in the Nov. 1, 2008 Booklist issue (and Booklist Online)
Academic aggregators - ebrary, EBL, and Myilibrary – were featured back in May, 2008.
All articles are linked from No Shelf Required, just check out the articles link.
For those of you unable to attend the ALA Panel – The Future of Reference Publishing: A View from the Top, there is a summary of the program available on Booklist Online.
We encourage comments, questions, and discussion on the blog.