Working Group Connection, September 2021: projects via Information Creation & Curation Topic Committee

The Co-chairs of the ICC topic committee are: Sharon Farnel (University of Alberta) and Ken Rawson (IEEE).

Assessment of Video and Audio Metadata Recommendations and Standards

Co-chairs: Bill Kasdorf (Kasdorf & Associates), Barbara Chen (retired, MLA), Violaine Iglesias (Cadmore Media).
Work Item Approved by NISO Voting Members
Working Group Web Page

Audio and Video assets are not new additions to library collections, though even before the worldwide pandemic, use of streaming media was growing at a very steep curve. More publishers and other vendors are increasing support for media assets in their products and systems. This Working Group, which has been under way since late 2019, is establishing guidelines for metadata for these assets; it should be stressed that they are incorporating existing standards rather than creating new ones.

This project included an analysis work phase that created an 'ideal' set of bibliographic, technical, administrative, and semantic metadata and designed and examined use cases. A subgroup working early in 2020 evaluated these ideals and requirements against existing capabilities of MARC, MODS, PBCore, EBUCore, IPTC VMH, Dublin Core, Common Metadata, and  In summer 2021, another subgroup re-examined the use cases and further categorized them, providing further analysis for elements proposed to be included in the Recommended Practice and identifying 'standard' treatment and 'special' treatment based on context. A second summer subgroup created an outline for the Recommended Practice draft document and began organizing the existing material for output.

The Working Group hopes that its draft Recommended Practice will be available for public comment by the end of this year. 

CRediT (Contributor Roles Taxonomy) Standardization

Co-chairs: Liz Allen (F1000), Simon Kerridge (University of Kent), Alison McGonagle-O'Connell (O'Connell Consulting).
Project Web Site
Work Item Approved by NISO Voting Members

CRediT (Contributor Roles Taxonomy), which will be formalized as an ANSI/NISO standard, is a high-level taxonomy--including 14 roles--that can be used to represent the roles typically played by contributors to scientific scholarly output. It is a simple and effective way to help promote greater visibility and recognition for the myriad contributions to scholarly research output.The roles describe each contributor’s specific contribution to the scholarly output.  Adopters of CRediT include many scholarly publishers and systems integrators. The CRediT project has been awarded generous grant funding in November 2020 from the Alfred P. Sloan Foundation and Wellcome to be committed over a two-year period and to be used to continue to support implementations of the taxonomy across scholarly publishers and within the scholarly research ecosystem more broadly. Following ANSI approval, NISO will form a CRediT Standing Committee which will work with the community to provide a wider forum for discussions about CRediT's potential expansions and further support for the research community. 

Alison McGonagle-O'Connell presented on CRediT at the NISO ALA Update in June. Peer Review Week in September saw the release of short videos with stakeholders discussing CRediT and its role in peer review identity.  You can follow CRediT News on its website and via Twitter

Criteria for Indexes

Co-chairs: Marti Heyman (OCLC), Pilar Wyman (Wyman Indexing).
Working Group Web Page
Publication: ANSI/NISO Z39.4-2021, Criteria for Indexes

This working group, which began its project in August 2019, created a new ANSI/NISO standard to provide guidelines for the content, organization, and presentation of indexes used for the retrieval of documents and parts of documents. Its work used as a starting point NISO TR02-1997, Guidelines for Indexes and Related Information Retrieval Devices (itself based on Z39.4-1984, Basic Criteria for Indexes), a robust and instructive NISO technical report but an old document which lacked the authority and wider industry recognition of a formal standard and did not reflect the significant changes in technology and techniques since its publication.  

In several project phases, Working Group members participated on index-type subgroups and on topic-based subgroups as they examined and rationalized old material and new material added across a range of stakeholders and experiences. An editorial subgroup ensured quality in the text.  The draft standard underwent a period of public review and comment from December 14, 2020 through January 31, 2021. The Working Group returned to work to manage these comments, incorporate associated edits in the text, and prepare responses to the commenters.  Following approval by a NISO Voting Pool in early July, ANSI approved the material as an ANSI/NISO standard and NISO published it on July 14. 

NISO plans to form a Standing Committee to support the standard. If you are interested in participating, please contact Nettie Lagace, NISO Associate Executive Director. 

E-Book Bibliographic Metadata Requirements in the Sale, Publication, Discovery, and Preservation Supply Chain (E-Book Metadata Working Group)

Co-chairs: Ravit David (University of Toronto), Alistair Morrison (Johns Hopkins University)
E-Book Metadata Working Group Web page

Members of the E-Book Metadata Working Group, representing libraries, publishers, aggregators, service providers and others, have been immersed in the issues in sharing descriptive metadata for e-books across a varied set of stakeholders, each with their own business requirements. The remit of this group is to collect the minimal metadata requirements necessary to describe e-books in order to support sales, discovery, delivery, deaccessioning and preservation, and to make recommendations for the most effective and efficient ways to metadata to be moved through the entire supply chain. The Recommended Practice this Working Group is creating will help creators and managers of bibliographic records to better communicate and cooperate with each other to minimize duplication of work and ensure overall quality of metadata, ultimately aiding end user tasks.

This project was performed in multiple phases. The first phase involved subgroups of Working Group members studying the metadata areas of authorities, dates, and identifiers in more detail to better understand further requirements and potential areas of interaction between stakeholders. A second phase charted workflow processes for various stakeholders to identify and prioritize the different metadata elements and map proposed requirements at the element level across workflows. The final phase consisted of very close analysis of the previous outputs, again comparing them to stakeholder needs. 

The draft Recommended Practice was available for public comment during Summer 2020.  The working group co-chairs reconciled the text with comment input and most recently the Working Group reviewed it.  It is expected to soon be approved by Working Group members before topic committee approval and NISO publication. 

Journal Article Tag Suite (JATS) Standing Committee

Co-chairs: Jeff Beck (National Center for Biotechnology Information, U.S. National Library of Medicine), B. Tommie Usdin (Mulberry Technologies, Inc.)
JATS Standing Committee Web Page
Publication: JATS: Journal Article Tag Suite (ANSI/NISO Z39.96-2021)

The purpose of JATS is to define a suite of XML elements and attributes that describes the content of metadata and journal articles using a common format that enables the exchange of journal content between publishers and archives. This Tag Suite is intended to preserve intellectual content of journals independent of the form in which the content was originally delivered, and to enable an archive to capture structural and semantic components of existing material. In addition, the JATS standard includes three implementations of the suite, called Tag Sets, which are intended to provide models for archiving, publishing, and authoring journal article content. 

The latest version of JATS, JATS 1.3, was approved by NISO Voting Members and ANSI earlier in the summer and was published as ANSI/NISO Z39.96-2021 on July 7.  JATS 1.3 non-normative  materials (DTDs, XSDs, RNGs, Tag Libraries) are available from the National Library of Medicine JATS website

The JATS Standing Committee manages its work via Continuous Maintenance procedures, which support incoming comments to be managed in an ongoing process of updates, and is continuing to meet regularly to discuss future changes and strategies for JATS, including a non-backwards compatible JATS 2.0 and its process.


Chair: Melissa Harrison (eLife) with Steering Committee
JATS4R Website
Work Item Approved by NISO Voting Members

JATS For Reuse is an initiative is dedicated to creating best practices for tagging content in JATS (ANSI/NISO Z39.96) XML to optimize reuse and communication in particular discrete areas of work. JATS4R became a NISO-sponsored effort in 2018; all documents created since then by JATS4R subgroups are individual NISO Recommended Practices. JATS4R work areas are prioritized by the community based on user request and emerging standards, and recommendations are revisited and revised as necessary. A Steering Committee oversees all the work and makes decisions.

The most recent NISO JATS4R Recommended Practices are: Preprint Citations, Funding (V1.1), Data Citations (V2.0) and Peer Review Materials. A subgroup developing recommendations for Software Citations is very close to making its output available for public comment in the near future. Another subgroup is currently developing recommendations for Abstracts

The updated JATS4R website is a great place to find more information, including a validator tool, a proposed roadmap incorporating community input, a list of all recommendations, and benefits of becoming involved. Participation in JATS4R efforts is always welcome.  

Journal Article Versions Revision

Co-chairs: Clay Burgett (American Chemical Society), Patrick Hargitt (Atypon), Mike Nason (University of New Brunswick/PKP)
Working Group Web Page
Work Item Approved by NISO Voting Members

NISO RP-8-2008, Journal Article Versions (JAV): Recommendations of the NISO/ALPSP JAV Technical Working Group was published in 2008. Publication practices have changed rapidly since then and the recommendations need updating. For example, preprint output has accelerated in scholarly publication workflows and practice, as they are made publicly available through pre-publication repositories, and various publishers are experimenting with different ways to publish, update, and keep research alive. Versions are important and citeable, and for many publishers the concept of a 'version of record' no longer applies or can apply to more than one instance at a time.

This newly-formed working group will define a set of terms for each of the different versions of content that are published, as well as a recommendation for whether separate DOIs should be assigned to them. It is currently finalizing its work plan which will support the stages of investigation, analysis, and drafting. 

Manuscript Exchange Common Approach

Co-chairs: Tony Alves (HighWire Press), Stephen Laverick (Green Fifteen Publishing Consultancy)
MECA Standing Committee Web Page
Publication: NISO RP-30-2020, Manuscript Exchange Common Approach (MECA)

The MECA Recommended Practice was published by NISO in June 2020. It supports researchers and service providers operating in the scholarly ecosystem in transfer of manuscripts between and among manuscript systems, such as those in use at publishers and preprint servers. Publishing operations and communications are improved when workflow processes such as manuscript rejection or alternate article submission recommendations can be supported across systems using MECA recommendations.

A MECA Standing Committee, which includes some members of the MECA Working Group and some new stakeholder representatives, is now providing education and support for the Recommended Practice. Standing Committee members are examining additional use cases for MECA, liaising with JATS4R work, and building programmatic support beyond FTP for technical transfer. 

Co-chairs Tony Alves and Stephen Laverick discussed their MECA work on the April NISO Open Teleconference. Tony also gave a lightning talk in September at the OASPA meeting. 

PIE-J (Presentation & Identification of E-Journals) Standing Committee

Chair: Sarah (Sally) Glasser (Hofstra University) 
PIE-J Working Group Web Page 
Publication: PIE-J Recommended Practice (NISO RP-16-2013)

The PIE-J Recommended Practice, PIE-J: Presentation & Identification of E-Journals (NISO RP-16-2013) was published in 2013. It provides guidance to publishers and platform providers on the presentation of e-journals--a critical component of the global scholarly infrastructure--particularly in the areas of title presentation, accurate use of ISSN, and citation practices. The PIE-J Recommended Practice is intended to alleviate the problems encountered by end users who attempt to access article-based materials online using citation elements. Two forms of a brochure describing PIE-J are also available via the PIE-J web page

Members of the PIE-J Standing Committee meet regularly to discuss implementation, feedback regarding specific publishers, and marketing efforts. As part of this work, the Standing Committee has made available a 
template on the PIE-J website for librarians who would like to contact publishers and providers to describe concerns about the presentation of e-journals on their websites. The Committee is currently discussing the feasibility of organizing some future revisions to PIE-J, based on the revision of the ISSN standard (ISO 3297) and updates to ISO 8.

Standards-Specific Ontology Standard

Co-chairs: Robert Wheeler (ASME), Cord Wischhöfer (DIN Software GmbH)
Working Group Web Page
Work Item Approved by NISO Voting Members

Meeting since late September 2020, the SSOS Working Group is developing a high-level ontology to describe a limited set of core concepts and relationships in standards life cycles. Adoption of this ontology by standards publishers will facilitate use of standards, support more consistent discovery and navigation within them, and set a foundation for other semantic applications--such as linked data--in the standards ecosystem.  Agreement on an ontology will also enable standards producers and distributors to further leverage existing investments in XML and build on existing work such as the NISO Standard Tag Suite, an ANSI/NISO standard that is a set of XML elements that provide a common format for preserving intellectual content of standards regardless of the form in which the content was originally developed. 

Access Innovations serves as the Secretariat for SSOS. The basic proof of concept ontology it created has been under review by the Working Group members, who contributed use cases. Over the summer a "drafting boot camp" subgroup organized the material generated to this point and assembled a basic draft standard document to be further discussed, added to, and finalized by the full group before making it available for a public comment/test period. 

STS: Standards Tag Suite

Co-chairs: Bruce Rosenblum (Inera), Robert Wheeler (American Society of Mechanical Engineers)
NISO STS Standing Committee Web Page
Publication: ANSI/NISO Z39.102, STS: Standards Tag Suite

This Standard's purpose is to define a set of XML elements and attributes the describe the full-text content and metadata of standards, including co-produced standards and standards bodies' adoptions of existing standards, with the intent of providing a common format in which standards organizations, publishers, disseminators, archives, and any lawful user can publish and exchange standards content. The intent of the Tag Suite is to preserve the intellectual content of standards, independent of the form in which that content was originally delivered. The Tag Suite enables the capture of structural and semantic components of material without modeling any particular sequence or textual format.

STS is an update and modification of ISO STS, a specific tag set used for standards publishing, and is now officially linked it to JATS (ANSI/NISO Z39.96-2015 JATS: Journal Article Tag Suite), a widely used specification which defines a set of XML elements and attributes for tagging journal articles and describes several article models. Supporting non-normative materials, including a tag library and DTD, XSD, and RNG schemas for each of the tag sets, are available at; an email discussion list provides community support for STS topics. 

The STS Standing Committee is responsible for the work of reviewing and responding to comments on the standard under a NISO continuous maintenance procedure, which will allow it to more easily publish updates to the standard. The Standing Committee has been meeting to review comments received in order to complete a draft of the next version of NISO STS, v1.d1, which will be made available for public comment in Q4.

Taxonomy, Definitions, and Recognition Badging Scheme

Co-chairs: Lorena Barba (George Washington University); Wayne Graves (ACM); Gerry Grenier (retired; formerly IEEE) 
Working Group Web page
Publication: NISO RP-31-2021, Reproducibility Badging and Definitions

Reproducibility, the practice of validating prior research through the sharing of data and methods, is a topic that has been discussed within the scholarly research community for more than twenty years. Recently, funding agencies and publishers have accelerated efforts to stimulate reproducibility. Critical to the issue are the definitions used to define the various levels of reproducibility, and agreement on a standardized badging scheme that can be applied in the publishing process (and perhaps used as a currency in the academic rewards culture). As publishers and researchers begin to implement reproducibility practices, recognition and reward schemes and the related taxonomies are developing on an ad hoc basis, creating a need for some standardization. This recommended practice, published by NISO in January 2021, is an effort to develop common recognition practices, vocabulary, and iconography used to facilitate the sharing of data and methods.

The NISO Working Group based its efforts on a landmark report, Reproducibility and Replicability in Science, published in 2019 by the U.S. National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine (NASEM). This report provided recommendations to researchers, academic institutions, publishers, and funders on steps that could be taken to improve reproducibility and replicability in science. The NISO Recommended Practice includes a set of four badge definitions, a list of badge characteristics, and an appendix including examples of currently used badges and badge hierarchies. 

NISO is organizing a Standing Committee to provide support and education for this effort, including exploring further recommendations on badge design, metadata, and validation. Interested persons should contact Nettie Lagace, NISO Associate Executive Director.

New Project: Content Platform/Linked Document

Work Item Approved by NISO Voting Members

Today's content consumers expect contexualized, targeted content delivered as a natural part of their workflow whether they access knowledge through a library or institutional system or a publisher's digital offering. Print-centric standards combine structure, presentation, and semantics into a single format and require complicated production workflows to meet print and digital requirements and are not nimble enough to support new use cases. This project, based on the Content Profile/Linked Document protocol in use at Elsevier, aims to create a mutually accepted standard for interchanging content and data to support collaboration and interoperability between and within organizations and systems. NISO is in the process of forming a new working group; for more information or to volunteer, contact Nettie Lagace.

New Project: Update Author Name Changes After Publication

Work Item Approved by NISO Voting Members

One aspect of formally-published research reports or publications, in addition to the wide dissemination of scholarly work, is to register and recognize the author's ownership and involvement in the work. It is important that an author is identified accurately and correctly in their outputs for many reasons: accountability, funding, precedence, promotion, tenure. This new project is to develop a NISO Recommended Practice for ensuring the widest possible notification and implementation of changes to author names post-publication. It will include recommendations for handling requests to update author names in published outputs and by which secondary and tertiary parties can be informed of the changes and update their own records to reflect changes. For more information or to volunteer for the working group, contact Nettie Lagace.