Headshot of NISO Eexecutive Director, Todd Carpenter

November 2016

Efficient investment of resources isn't something that only corporate entities need to focus on. Every organization must be aware that the things required to get projects completed, such as time, funds, and volunteers, are all finite and possibly in short supply. While NISO has been extremely effective in using our limited resources to greatest effect, a focus on continual improvement is an important element of our success. This drive to improve has enabled NISO to triple the number of ongoing efforts we are able to manage. We have been able to effectively manage our resources while adding staff and investing in technology that contributes to our success.

As part of this process, one thing we have not yet done is reflect on the work that we have done and have published. Even the published standards and recommended practices in our portfolio require some investment of resources to confirm and maintain. There are standards and recommended practices that were important at the time they were developed, but as technology has changed, some parts of our portfolio simply aren't as important as they once were. Even when those standards or recommended practices remain in use, their application is limited, or practices related to those technologies have long since stabilized, and we need to ask ourselves whether the use of the standard justifies the time and energy necessary to maintain it. Of course, even when a specification is deprecated that does not necessarily mean that the related technology ceases to be in use, and occasionally, even when a standard is in use, we find it difficult to locate parties willing to participate in revision processes. These situations, too, are signals that NISO's efforts could be more usefully directed elsewhere.

As with everything at NISO, we strive to make our development decisions a consensus effort. The leadership committees within NISO have determined that we should gather community feedback on these decisions. We are circulating a survey that will help us to gather information about which of our standards provide value and are used in the community. We will continue to invest in maintaining the standards that are in widespread use; some of these are unlikely to change and will be placed into a stabilized maintenance status, reducing the administrative burden required for upkeep, whereas others will be regularly advanced and updated as required. Some long-standing standards may be withdrawn, because if the community isn't invested in retaining a standard, NISO should turn its attention to efforts that have a broader potential impact.

Since the implications of this survey could be significant, we would like to gather opinions from the most diverse constituency possible. While the survey might be a bit time-consuming, we encourage you all to invest some of your time and professional expertise in commenting on which of NISO's activities are most valuable to your organization and our community. In addition to exploring those efforts that are perceived to be most valuable, we are simultaneously reviewing how we've grouped these activities, and may realign our Topic Committee structure to address changing technology trends in our industry. We hope that through this analysis we can provide a next generation of standards on new technology areas and better match the future of information distribution.

We appreciate your feedback and input on these future directions for our Organization and for the information distribution ecosystem.

With kindest regards,

Todd Carpenter’s Signature

Todd Carpenter

Executive Director

NISO Reports

Provide Your Input on NISO's Publications Priorities

NISO is undertaking a substantive review of our publications portfolio to determine our best focus and attention in the future. To help us fully understand the broader impacts of the various standards, recommended practices, technical reports, white papers, and other documents that NISO has published, we want include as much community input to this process as possible.

NISO Professional Development Events in November and December

NISO Two-Part Webinar: Digital Security
Part 1: Securing Library Systems
Wednesday, November 9
1:00 p.m. - 2:30 p.m., EST

Part 2: Protecting Library Resources from Piracy
Wednesday, November 16
1:00 p.m. - 2:30 p.m., EST

In our connected environment, security is a tremendously important element of any system. Institutions large and small have been targets of attack and libraries are a significant vector of approach for those attacks, because of their bias toward access and sharing of resources. In addition to personal information about patrons, library systems store a variety of valuable information and provide gateways to numerous other resources. All of these realities mean that information specialists must be aware of potential risks and how to address them.

This two-part webinar program will focus on best practices that libraries can undertake to ensure their services are protected and secure. Part one of the webinar, scheduled for November 9, will cover management of internal systems and methods of securing library systems and the data that they hold.

Confirmed speakers: Doug Goans, Department Head, Information Technology and Development, and Chris Helms, Network Support Engineer Senior, Georgia Tech Library; Blake Carver, Senior Systems Administrator, LYRASIS Technology Services, with additional names to be announced.

The second segment of this program, scheduled for November 16, will address the issue of privacy and methods for protecting content from unauthorized distribution, including digital rights management systems, social DRM, and other approaches.

Confirmed speakers: Paul R. Butler, MLIS, Library Technologies Support Analyst, Ball State University; Blake Carver, Senior Systems Administrator, LYRASIS Technology Services, with additional names to be announced.

For additional information, visit the NISO event page.

Remember that NISO offers a variety of registration options. Library Standards Alliance (LSA) members will automatically receive access to both sessions of this two-part event. Non-members of NISO may register for one session or for both at a packaged rate. Access to an archived recording of the event is included in that registration fee.

December 2017

Joint NISO-NFAIS Virtual Conference
Making Certain Digital Content is Preserved: Archiving Digital Resources
Wednesday, December 7, 2016, 11:00am - 5pm, EST

Publishers, aggregators, government agencies, research institutes, and libraries understand the value in, and require, archiving mechanisms that ensure access to scholarly records in a constantly changing information landscape. Over the last several years, related best practices have been developed and many initiatives have been launched that attempt to rise to the challenge of preserving these works. However, a clear vision for how to support long-term maintenance to ensure this critical information is not lost or degraded, and who will do the work, has sometimes been lacking. This webinar will address the past, present, and future of digital preservation and include an overview, institutional policies, metadata and formats, accessibility, types of archives and repositories, back-up systems, and issues of security.

Confirmed Speakers: Craig Van Dyck, Executive Director, The CLOCKSS Archive; Jonathan Wheeler, Data Curation Librarian, University of New Mexico; Andrea Goethals, Manager of Digital Preservation and Repository Services, Harvard University; Kate Wittenberg, Managing Director, Portico; Hannah Scates Kettler, Digitial Humanities Research Instruction Librarian, University of Iowa; Charles J. Henry, President, Council on Library and Information Resources; Christine Madsen, Chief Innovation Officer and Megan Hurst, Chief Experience Officer, Athenaeum21; and Ricc Ferrante, Information Technology Archivist & Director of Digital Services, Smithsonian Institution Archives. For more information, see the NISO event page.

NISO Webinar
Make it at the Library: How Does Library Technology Support Makerspaces?
Wednesday, December 14, 2017, 1:00pm - 2:30pm, EST

The movement to help support the "maker" culture in libraries has grown and and is creating vibrant communities centered around the library in many places. Beyond purchasing equipment and the tools necessary to produce objects, what does the library need to do to support these innovation spaces? How do traditional library services and information management support these communities and new tools? This session will explore how some of the most successful makerspaces were created and how they incorporate traditional library services. During this session, speakers from three institutions that have implemented makerspaces will discuss how they integrate traditional services into their maker initiatives. Those speakers are: Dr. George Meadows, University of Mary Washington; Sara Gonzalez, University of Florida; and John Burke, Miami University. For more information, see the NISO event page.

Begin Thinking Ahead to 2017!

The dates and topics of NISO's 2017 educational events have been posted to the NISO website. Keep an eye out for the forthcoming announcement of pricing and available subscription packages.

Forthcoming ISO Ballots

NISO Voting members participate in the development, revision, and evaluation of standards. Voting members are able to influence the standards process and mold the future of the industry. The following NISO ballots are open and will close before the next newsletter is distributed. If you are a NISO Voting Member, log into your NISO page and you'll see the ballots linked there.

SHORT TURN-AROUND BALLOT: Call for participation in the Working Group that Will Revise ISO 3297:2007 Information and documentation - International standard serial number (ISSN)

The results of the ballot on the systematic review of the ISSN standard, ISO 3297, were published at the end of September, 2016. 17 P-Members voted in favor of the revision and 10 P-members appointed experts to participate in the Working Group that is now being formed as a result of the systematic review.

This call is for U.S. nominees to the Working Group. Participation on ISO working groups is generally done via e-mail and teleconference or videoconference. Occasionally, the WG may meet in person in conjunction with a TC46 meeting week, but attendance at the in-person meetings is not required for participation.

SHORT TURN-AROUND BALLOT: Appointment of Ms. Gaëlle Béquet as Convenor of the Working Group that Will Revise ISO 3297:2007 Information and documentation - International standard serial number (ISSN)

The results of the ballot on the systematic review of the ISSN standard, ISO 3297, were published at the end of September, 2016. 17 P-Members voted in favor of the revision and 10 P-members appointed experts to participate in the Working Group that is now being formed as a result of the systematic review.

The International ISSN Center has nominated Ms. Gaëlle Béquet as convenor of the working group. Ms. Béquet was appointed as Director of the ISSN International Centre in 2014. She has previously worked as International Officer and ICT specialist in academic libraries. She holds a PhD in library and information science from University Sorbonne Nouvelle.

Systematic Review of ISO 9:1995 (Ed 2, vers 3) Information and documentation -- Transliteration of Cyrillic characters into Latin characters -- Slavic and non-Slavic languages

This is a ballot for the five-year systematic review of the standard. This International Standard establishes a System for the transliteration into Latin characters of Cyrillic characters constituting the alphabets of Slavic and non-Slavic languages, in accordance with the principles of stringent conversion in Order to permit international information exchange, particularly by electronic means.

Systematic Review of ISO 9985:1996 (vers 3) Information and documentation -- Transliteration of Armenian characters into Latin characters

This is a ballot for the five-year systematic review of the standard. This International Standard establishes a system for the transliteration of the modern Armenian alphabet into Latin characters, in accordance with the principles of stringent conversion in order to permit international information exchange, particularly by electronic means.

Systematic Review of ISO 15919:2001 (vers 3) -- Information and documentation -- Transliteration of Devanagari and related Indic scripts into Latin characters

This is a ballot for the five-year systematic review of the standard. This International Standard provides tables which enable the transliteration into Latin characters from text in Indic scripts which are largely specified in rows 09 to 0D of UCS (ISO/IEC 10646-1 and Unicode).

Systematic Review of ISO 259-2:1994 (vers 3) Information and documentation -- Transliteration of Hebrew characters into Latin characters -- Part 2: Simplified transliteration

This is a ballot for the five-year systematic review of the standard. This part of ISO 259 specifies a simplified System for the transliteration of Hebrew characters into Latin characters. This simplification of the stringent rules established by ISO 259:1984 is especially intended to make easier the processing of bibliographic information (catalogues, indices, citations, etc.).

Systematic Review of ISO 259:1984 (vers 4) Documentation -- Transliteration of Hebrew characters into Latin characters

This is a ballot for the five-year systematic review of the standard. This International Standard establishes a system for the transliteration of Hebrew characters into Latin characters following the principles of stringent conversion in order to permit international information exchange.

Systematic Review of ISO 233-2:1993 (vers 5) Information and documentation -- Transliteration of Arabic characters into Latin characters -- Part 2: Arabic language -- Simplified transliteration

This is a ballot for the five-year systematic review of the standard. This part of ISO 233 establishes a simplified System for the transliteration of Arabic characters into Latin characters. This simplification of the stringent rules established by ISO 233:1984 is especially intended to facilitate the processing of bibliographic information (e.g. catalogues, indices, citations, etc).

Systematic Review of ISO 233:1984 (vers 4) Documentation -- Transliteration of Arabic characters into Latin characters

This is a ballot for the five-year systematic review of the standard. This International Standard establishes a system for the transliteration of Arabic characters into Latin characters following the principles of stringent conversion in order to permit international information exchange.

New on the NISO Website

New Specs & Standards

EPUB 3.1 has Advanced to Proposed Specification Status

The IDPF Board recently approved the move to advance the EPUB 3.1 specifications to Proposed Specification status. Among other changes, the revision aims to help make EPUB publications accessible.

SOFA Talk: Strength of Function for Authenticators Framework Now Open for Comment

NIST has released for comment a proposed framework that can be used to quantify the security of authentication solutions. Strength of Function for Authenticators - Biometrics (SOFA-B) Discussion Draft, developed because of the increased availability of biometric sensors in the consumer space, focuses on issues such as spoof detection and efforts to break a biometric system.

Media Stories

Librarian of Congress Creates Controversy with First Appointments
Library of Congress Press Release, October 21, 2016

The new Librarian of Congress (LoC), Dr. Carla Hayden, announced senior appointments in October. Maria Pallante, who was appointed register of copyrights by the previous Librarian of Congress, James Billington, was made senior advisor for digital strategy, with Karyn Temple Claggett named acting register of copyrights.

While the LoC's site still reflects these appointments, Pallante, who last year informed Congress that the copyright office should be independent from the LoC, turned down the new position and left the institution entirely. The tech world was quick to comment on the controversy, with British website The Register calling Hayden's move "a brutal Silicon Valley-style sacking" and Billboard quoting one copyright stakeholder as saying that, "people in the creative community are furious about the fact that this was done [...] but especially about the way it was done." Artist Rights Watch was perhaps most incendiary, headlining its coverage "Google Fires Head of U.S. Copyright Office."

NISO Note: The Library of Congress is a NISO Voting Member.

Maybe IDPF and W3C Should *Compete* in E-Book Standards
Go To Hellman Blog, October 14, 2016; by Eric Hellman

In May of this year, the International Digital Publishing Forum (IDPF) and the World Wide Web Consortium (W3C) announced that they were exploring plans to combine. Not everyone thought it was a good idea, and in this blog post, Hellman expresses continued misgivings. "The world needs ways to deliver portable content that don't run through the Amazon tollgates," says Hellman. "For that we need innovation that's as unconstrained and disruptive as the rest of the Internet."

MIT Task Force Releases Preliminary "Future of Libraries" Report
MIT News Office, October 24, 2016; by Peter Dizikes

After a year of work, an MIT task force has released a preliminary version of a report imagining the future of the institution's libraries. Organized according to the four pillars ("Community and Relationships, "Discovery and Use," "Stewardship and Sustainability," and "Research and Development") that the task force used to organize its work, the report is available for public comment, with interested parties also invited to an upcoming, related Open Forum.

NISO Note: MIT is a NISO LSA Member.

Introducing Syndetics Unbound
LibraryThing Blog, October 27, 2016; by Tim Spalding

Cataloging and reviewing website LibraryThing and database vendor ProQuest have unveiled Syndetics Unbound, a new catalog-enhancement tool. The product, the companies explain, combines ProQuest's Syndetics Plus and LibraryThing's LibraryThing for Libraries and Book Display Widgets. Enhancements to traditional catalog offerings include an Amazon-like "look inside" and professional and LibraryThing reviews.

NISO Note: ProQuest is a NISO Voting Member.

Invitation to Tender: A Feasibility Study on Monographs
RLUK News, October 19, 2016

While journal acquisitions have been discussed extensively, says Research Libraries UK (RLUK), acquisitions questions surrounding scholarly monographs have yet to be tackled comprehensively. The group therefore invites "tenders for proposals to undertake a feasibility study that will explore various aspects relating to monographs, identify potential solutions to meet the community's needs, and to address issues associated with the national monograph management agenda."

Inside the Cyberattack that Shocked the U.S. Government
Wired, October 23, 2016; by Brendan I. Koerner

With hackers in the news after October's DDoS attack on the U.S. east coast, Wired has released an analysis of an April 2015 attack on the Federal government's human resources department, the Office of Personnel Management (OPM). The attackers had access to material including "18 million copies of Standard Form 86, a 127-page questionnaire for federal security clearance that includes probing questions about an applicant's personal finances, past substance abuse, and psychiatric care." Koerner offers a step-by-step look at what the hackers did in that case, as well as broader commentary on hacker activities generally.

Can You Be Anonymous on the Internet? No, You Cannot
Homeland Security Newswire, October 27, 2016

In a recent study, the Footprints Project, created by a group of Princeton researchers, gained access to research subjects' anonymous web browsing history, including their Twitter usage. "[B]ased on that information alone, Footprints successfully identified eleven out of thirteen people who visited the site on its first day of operation," and by the end of the project had identified 80% of users.