Working Group Connection, September 2022: 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).
Draft Recommended Practice with public comments
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, under way since late 2019, is establishing guidelines for metadata for these assets. Members wish to stress that they are incorporating existing standards rather than creating any new one.

The draft Recommended Practice was available for public comment from June 21 to August 5; the co-chairs and working group members are reviewing the input received and making appropriate modifications to the document before finalization, approval and publication, anticipated this fall. 

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 subsequently evaluated these ideals and requirements against existing capabilities of MARC, MODS, PBCore, EBUCore, IPTC VMH, Dublin Core, Common Metadata, and The use cases were then re-examined and further categorized, prioritizing elements to be included in the Recommended Practice and identifying 'standard' treatment and 'special' treatment based on context.   The properties included are intended to provide a common, non-technical vocabulary to express what information elements need to be included in an exchange of a media asset between a sender and a recipient, or to make a media asset discoverable by a user who doesn't know the metadata model that the holder of the asset might use to characterize it. 

Nettie Lagace will present on the project at the upcoming Charleston Conference in November, and gave an update as part of the NISO Update session at the ALA Annual Conference.  Todd Carpenter presented on the group's efforts at NASIG 2022 in Baltimore in June. 

Content Platform/Linked Document

Co-chairs: Suzanne BeDell (Independent Consultant), Bill Kasdorf (Kasdorf & Associates)
Working Group Website
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. 

Since last November, the Working Group has been exploring business requirements and supporting and related standards as part of its work reviewing and editing the existing specification text.  Additional work has been expended to create supporting examples to test the protocols and building some software viewers to illustrate desired outputs.  The group hopes to finalize its draft in the near future to enable a review for public comment period this fall.  

Nettie Lagace will present on the project at the upcoming Charleston Conference in November. 

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
NISO Standing Committee Web Page
Publication: ANSI/NISO Z39.104-2022, CRediT, Contributor Roles Taxonomy

This working group's output, ANSI/NISO Z39.104-2022, CRediT, Contributor Roles Taxonomy was approved by ANSI on January 14, 2022 and published by NISO on February 8. CRediT 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 was also awarded generous grant funding in 2020 from the Alfred P. Sloan Foundation and Wellcome to be used to continue to support implementations of the taxonomy across scholarly publishers and within the scholarly research ecosystem more broadly.

The NISO CRediT Standing Committee has now been formed; its initial meetings will explore potential directions and plans for CRediT support.  NISO invites interested parties to join the CRediT Community of Interest... this group will provide input to the Standing Committee. 

NISO is supporting CRediT Personas Workshops taking place on September 29 and 30.  Alison McGonagle-O'Connell presented on CRediT at a NISO panel at the Society for Scholarly Publishing annual meeting in June in Chicago. 

You can follow CRediT News on its website and via Twitter

Criteria for Indexes

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

This working group 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.  The ANSI/NISO standard, published in July 2021, includes existing material that was examined and rationalized, and new material added across a range of stakeholders and experiences. 

NISO is now forming 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
Publication: NISO RP-29-2022, E-Book Bibliographic Metadata Requirements in the Sale, Publication, Discovery, Delivery, and Preservation Supply Chain

Members of the E-Book Metadata Working Group, representing libraries, publishers, aggregators, service providers and others, immersed themselves in the issues in sharing descriptive metadata for e-books across a varied set of stakeholders, each with their own business requirements. They collected the minimal metadata requirements necessary to describe e-books in order to support sales, discovery, delivery, deaccessioning and preservation, and made recommendations for the most effective and efficient ways to metadata to be moved through the entire supply chain. Their Recommended Practice helps 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. 

Following a public comment period in summer 2020, the working group co-chairs reconciled the text with comment input. Working Group members then reviewed and finalized the text and it was presented for approval by the topic committee.  NISO published the Recommended Practice in February and is now forming a Standing Committee to provide support. If you are interested in joining or have any questions, contact Nettie Lagace, NISO Associate Executive Director. 

Alistair Morrison presented the group's work at the NASIG Conference in June. 

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 published as ANSI/NISO Z39.96-2021 in July.  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 the next iteration, JATS 1.4.  There is also discussion on a non-backwards compatible JATS 2.0.

JATS-Con was held virtually in early May. 


Chair: Melissa Harrison (EMBL-EBI) 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 Permissions (V2) and Abstracts, published by NISO in June. Subgroups developing recommendations for Authors and Affiliations and Accessibility are now under way. 

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. 

Jeff Beck spoke about JATS4R and its relationship to JATS at JATS-Con in May. 

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 cite-able, 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 working group, which started its work last fall, 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. Its work plan supports the stages of investigation, analysis, and drafting; the working group is currently undertaking "investigation" -- subgroups met over the summer to discuss definitions of stages from publisher and repository perspectives and to perform environmental scans of researcher activity.  This fall the working group will resume its analysis of these discussions to determine how best to address issues from the 2008 RP.

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.

A MECA Standing Committee, which includes some members of the MECA Working Group and some new stakeholder representatives, provides education and support for the Recommended Practice. Standing Committee members meet monthly to examine additional use cases for MECA, report on liaisons with JATS4R and Peer Review Terminology work, build programmatic support beyond FTP for technical transfer, and consider general approaches to further socialize MECA into the scholarly technology landscape. 

Co-chair Tony Alves discussed the MECA work at the CSE Annual Meeting in May. Laura Randall shared a MECA update as part of the open session at JATS-Con 2022, also in May.

Peer Review Terminology

Chair: Joris van Rossum (STM)
Working Group Web Page
NISO Work Item Proposal

Peer review is the process used to assess the validity, quality, and often the originality of articles for publication. Its ultimate purpose is to maintain the integrity of science by filtering out invalid or poor quality articles, as well as make sure research outcomes are exposed to relevant audiences through publication in subject-specific journals. As such, it is a crucial process in scholarly communication and a pillar of the scientific method. 

In 2019, STM recognized the need to support the industry in ensuring greater transparency and openness in peer review, which is an essential element of Open Science. This support includes harmonizing and better communicating definitions of discrete elements of these processes, so that members of the community—whether they be authors, reviewers, editors or readers—can quickly and easily recognize how to more productively participate in the creation and qualification of scholarly content. An STM working group developed definitions and best practice recommendations for the communication of peer review processes, now available in its version 2.1 form

Since last year, a NISO Working Group has been managing further publisher trials of the definitions, with an eye toward finalizing and publishing this material as an ANSI/NISO standard. Publisher trials are now complete and NISO staff is working with the working group to finalize the proposed standard text for its approval process and ballot to NISO Voting Members.

Anna Jester presented the group's work as part of a NISO panel at the SSP Annual Meeting in June.  Joris van Rossum joined the NISO Open Teleconference in September. 

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 periodically to discuss implementation, feedback regarding specific publishers, and marketing efforts. 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 also 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.

Reproducibility Badging and Definitions Standing Committee

Co-chairs: Gerry Grenier (Code Ocean) 
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. NISO published the recommended practice in January 2021. It 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. 

The NISO Standing Committee has started meeting. It provides support and education for the effort, including exploring further recommendations on badge design, metadata, and validation. 

Gerry Grenier presented Reproducibility Badging and Definitions as part of a NISO session at the SSP Annual Meeting in Chicago in June and discussed the effort on the NISO Open Teleconference in May

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

The SSOS Working Group is developing a high-level ontology to describe a limited set of core concepts and relationships in standards life cycles. Any expert working in standardization activities in more than one standards-developing organization (SDO) is aware that most consensus-based standards development and publishing processes share a lot of common features and development stages. However, each SDO follows its own processes and rules, and ultimately, no standards development process in one organization is 100% identical to the process in another organization. This presents a challenge, e.g., standards users often need to understand the life cycle stage, be it a development stage or maintenance cycle information, from more than one organization in their daily practice.

The SSOS aims at a generic, non-SDO-specific description of the standards life cycles to which the stages and deliverables of standards from different SDOs can be mapped. If applied by SDOs, the use of NISO SSOS allows for better information systems and better automated retrieval of life cycle information across a wide range of standardization activities and standards products in many organizations.

The SSOS Working Group made its draft standard (and an OWL version of the ontology) available for public comment earlier this year, and has since been considering responses to these comments and potential changes to the text. This editing work is now nearly complete; following finalization and approval by the Working Group, Topic Committee, NISO Voting Members and ANSI, NISO can publish the standard -- hopefully in the next few months. 

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 that 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 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. Most recently, the Standing Committee has completed a draft version of NISO STS, v1.2 which includes comments received since the original publication in 2017.  This draft version now undergoing approval balloting by a voting pool made up of NISO voting members.  Presuming it is approved by them, it will be submitted to ANSI for its approval and then published by NISO, estimated by the end of October.  

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.

New Project: Integrating Publisher and Repository Workflows to Improve Research Data-Article Links

Work Item Approved by NISO Voting Members

The practice of research data deposition, publication, and citation has increased in recent years, as government entities, publishers, funders, and other stakeholders have built policies and requirements to support open data. Yet gaps remain. While some limitations to the practice of data citation could be attributed to cultural barriers, technical barriers should be lowered to make it easier to link data and other research objects with literature in a consistent way, by specifying how publisher and repository systems should interoperate so that link creation happens as a matter of course.

This new project is to develop a NISO Recommended Practice that will define information to be transmitted at each end of a bidirectional link between datasets and other research works, including what notifications are needed, focusing on automated data exchange. For more information or to volunteer for the working group, contact Nettie Lagace.