Monday, January 23, 2012

MediaWeek (V5, N4): Research Works Act, Aussie Fiction + More

The Chronicle of Higher Ed looks at the Research Works Act: (Chron)
Whatever the executive branch decides to do about open-access mandates, it's not at all certain that the Research Works Act stands much chance of becoming law. In 2009, a similar bill, called the Fair Copyright in Research Works Act, failed to make it out of committee.
This is an election year, which makes it "a very difficult year to move any sort of legislation, let along legislation that has acquired a certain amount of controversy," Mr. Adler said. A lot of Congress's attention has been absorbed by higher-profile proposals, such as the widely unpopular Stop Online Piracy Act, or SOPA, and its Senate counterpart, the Protect IP Act, or PIPA. Those bills have created considerable resistance in the tech industry and among advocates of an open Web. Rep. Issa has been one of the legislators most vocally against SOPA.
Still, the introduction of the Research Works Act has public-access advocates on the alert, and it has once again exposed the persistent differences of opinion among scholarly publishers over federal mandates and how to approach the complex issues they present. University presses in particular are caught between wanting to take advantage of the resources of a big group like the Association of American Publishers, their own commitment to spreading scholarship widely, and the need to find a way to stay in business while honoring that commitment.
Seems and annual call for the teaching of more Aussie Classics (Brisbane Times):
Mr Heyward's comments follow a Sunday Age report last August that Melbourne University students had started their own Australian literature studies because there was no comparable course offered by the university.
Barbara Creed, head of the school of culture and communication at Melbourne University, said this was an unusual situation in which the course lecturer had left unexpectedly, and the university had been unable to offer a dedicated Australian literature subject as a result. However, ''The Australian Imaginary'' was back on the syllabus this year.
Professor Creed said that, although there may not be many courses designated specifically as Australian literature, the texts were nonetheless covered in a wide range of other courses, including creative writing, indigenous studies and film studies.
But she agreed with Mr Heyward that more Australian texts need to be adapted to film or television, where they will have a far broader audience reach. Whenever a novel is adapted to screen, she said, there is a boost in sales of the book as a result.

From the Twitter:

Self-Published Authors Still Rarely Make the Jump to Publishing Houses: PBS

Apple and digital publishing: A textbook manoeuvre  The Economist 

Bibliophilia: Punches, matrices and fetishists: The Economist  

Salman Rushdie: a literary giant still beset by bigots: Guardian

Is the International Herald Tribune about to breathe its last?

5 Universities to Test Bulk-Purchasing of E-Textbooks in Bid to Rein In Costs Chronicle

Universities look to get discounts on e-textbooks for students: Inside Higher Ed

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