"Can I Use This?" How Museum and Library Image Policies Undermine Education

e-Literate • 26 November 2012

Fractured framework. Acquiring high-quality images for use in education has become more complicated since museums and libraries have transitioned to digital collections. The lending and licensing rules have become complex and expensive—check out this call for a more consistent and supportive approach toward academic use policies.

I think the author is spot on in his analysis although he should talk to other disciplines; art history is no more fractured in its information sources than most. We've been battling the museum notion of image as profit center for a long time. Reflect on the beginnings of Corbis Images in the 1990s when museums crawled over one another to cut a deal with this Gates-owned company. Reproduction services often create a revenue stream but very rarely profit. Kudos to the Rijksmuseum who finally got tired of seeing all the lousy distorted images of their items on the Web (Google Vermeer The Milkmaid) and have put out very high resolution versions for downloading (their version). (Michalko)

Be an Information DJ

HBR Blog Network • 27 November 2012

It's human nature. A recent study indicates that our reaction to new ideas is directly connected to our anticipation of sharing them with others. Read on for insight into why people are just information "curators" at heart.

This sounds right. Think of it in the context of the conference attendee sitting next to you tweeting the presentations (cartoons here). They are getting excited about the possibility of being re-tweeted. (Michalko)

The Data Vigilante

The Atlantic • December 2012

Sloppy statistics. Unverifiable results have cast a shadow on scientific research recently. The problem isn't fraud so much as selective data manipulation, says Uri Simonsohn, a research psychologist at the University of Pennsylvania's Wharton School who compares sloppy statistics to "steroids in baseball." This is an ongoing issue—read on for one man's crusade to bring more rigorous standards to academic scholarship.

Now I'm worried that the social psychology result reported in the previous article might fall into the sloppy or selective statistic categories outlined in this article. Take a look at the abstract for Professor Simonsohn's most recent article in the The Economic Journal titled "Weather To Go To College." Yep. That's the correct spelling. (Michalko)

Who's Tracking Your Reading Habits? An E-Book Buyer's Guide to Privacy, 2012 Edition

Electronic Frontier Foundation • 29 November 2012

Surveillance tactics.Check out this comparison of e-reader policies related to purchase tracking, information sharing and more. Many of the policies are vague or unclear, but the answers are a reminder that almost any e-reading experience involves a loss of privacy.

I don't own an e-reader. Well, not yet—it is the holidays and they are a very hot gift. Those of you already among the 20% of Americans that do will be grateful for this nicely done chart. Thanks to the EFF who works on behalf of all of us. Check out their Takedown Hall of Shame. (Michalko)

Colleges Getting Serious About Reading, Writing and Reputation Management

GigaOM • 30 November 2012

Brand tweaking. Corporations spend hundreds of thousands on reputation management; now search optimization upstart Brand Yourself is offering a low-budget DIY solution for individuals. For $10 per month, users can log on to the Web-based service and improve the results that pop up when someone searches on their name. With 75% of HR departments required to do online searches before hiring, some colleges are signing on to help students clean up their online profiles for future job hunting.

As we know management of your personal brand in the web environment is important. My colleague, Lorcan Dempsey, has done some good thinking about this. Look at his presentation titled "Managing Our Online Profersonal Lives." Nice try on the neologism. ;) (Michalko)

Mapping American Writers

Intelligent Life/The Economist • November/December 2012

Just for fun. Check out this unusual map rendered by British bookseller Geoff Sawers. Although Sawer admits that the 200 authors, poets and cartoonists included were selected somewhat arbitrarily, his Literary Map of the United States of America offers a fresh twist on the "Top X" list through a clever mashup of calligraphy and cartography with just a dash of whimsy.

Cute. The lesson is: be born in a part of the United States that's sparsely populated and produces few authors. (Michalko)

Above the Fold Quiz

According to an item in this week's News and Views section, where can you read about the strategies for professional engagement and growth that are necessary for building a successful and meaningful career as a digital librarian?

Get the answer.