RE: [Videolib] (no subject)

Lisa Irwin (LisaI@kpl.gov)
Thu, 29 May 2003 12:41:07 -0400

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Patrons borrow videos from our PL collection for a couple of obvious =
reasons--we have stuff that the video store does NOT have (all the great =
educational stuff that folks on this list have been talking about) and =
we have stuff that they can get for free instead of renting at the video =
store. I can only assume that as video becomes more easily available in =
new formats (whatever these may be--disposable DVDs and streaming as two =
examples), our patrons will come to us wanting to get video in the new =
formats. Not that different than the demand for DVD instead of VHS. =
Not that all decisions are, or can be budget-wise, based solely on what =
the patrons want...but it seems worth investigating.
=20
Ten years from now, if a lot of our patrons have good bandwidth into =
their homes and they could stream movies from the PL catalog for free =
(just like they used to check out VHS for free), wouldn't they want to =
do that? Because current developments in the consumer market may affect =
our ability to meet this demand ten years from now (should we decide to =
do so), it seems like we need to get involved now to try to keep the =
digital options for libraries open.
=20
Lisa Irwin (exchanging student hat for library hat)
Audiovisual Services=20
Kalamazoo Public Library=20
Library of the Year 2002=20
(269) 553-7923=20
lisai@kpl.gov=20
=20

-----Original Message-----
From: Gary Handman [mailto:ghandman@library.berkeley.edu]
Sent: Thursday, May 29, 2003 11:46 AM
To: videolib@library.berkeley.edu
Subject: Re: [Videolib] (no subject)

So? What does all this have to do with libraries? What exactly =
(E*X*A*C*T*L*Y) would licensing digital video content
(an oxymoron at present) buy us? (I'm not willing to be obtuse here, =
really)=20

Here's my answer to myself:
--Digital access would be an immense leap forward as a way of =
providing unique primary source materials and
digital library collections to our users (an extension of the =
various digital library initiatives now under sail
in most ARL libraries.

--Digital storage and access might (but only might) be a way of =
dealing with the issue of preservation (there
are LOTS of qualifications here)

--Digital storage and access would provide a solution to =
physical storage problems

That's about it. =20

As I said earlier, I'm not vaguely willing to consider "licensing =
scenarios" until there is content in place to worry about licensing (if =
the only content providers are the Viacoms of the world, the hell with =
it! Let the consumer market deal with the issue). =20

I'm not vaguely willing to put energy and money into the matter until I =
can see clear benefits of going there in terms of the library's mission =
(now or in the future). Somehow, I don't think that mission will =
include us becoming the Big Kazaa's or Napsters in the sky... =20
=20

=20

=20

At 02:57 PM 5/28/2003 -0500, you wrote:

Gary, I don't think we're necessarily disagreeing, but see what you =
think.

Some more thoughts about a possible future: why should we wait for the =
licensing scenarios to kick in? Do we have to wait for the equivalent =
of Elsevier (or maybe Disney, I guess, or Viacom) to come in and try to =
force The Big Deal on us? Or worse, to do it little-by-little so that =
it's hard to see the whammy coming? Can't we have a position to begin =
with that licensing should be approached with extreme prejudice? If all =
the biggies are planning to bypass us eventually (?), what's to be =
gained by jumping in to licensing now?

Every time one of these gouging pay for subscription or DRM-ed to death =
audio or video services dies a nasty death I rub my hands with glee. =
Will they eventually become the norm? Perhaps, but I look to audio as a =
sign of what's coming with video and I don't see that any of the =
providers have come up with a good model yet for selling digital =
directly to the consumer. I personally don't believe that this is the =
fault of those out there supposedly pirating content, either. I firmly =
believe that when there is a fair and reasonably priced system for =
paying for, downloading and repeatedly using their digital content, =
people will take to it.

As for whether vendors will cut out libraries and go directly to the =
consumer, that was the old scary scenario with electronic print =
publishing, and I haven't seen that wipe out libraries YET. [Granted, =
among other differences, the print shift is a distribution and a format =
shift whereas with audio and video consumers are already accustomed to =
having their access mediated by technology.] Our library, =
unfortunately, licenses every journal under the sun and is getting =
firmly into the ebook business. My guess is that we are by far the =
biggest purchasers of eBooks on campus, but of course I lack data to =
back that statement up.

And I think I disagree with you about the technical problems, Gary. =
Absolutely, at this point in time, it is inconceivable for even a =
college library, let alone a k-12 or a public library, to consider =
providing a unicast, video-on-demand service with, say, high bitrate =
MPEG2. But will it be possible to do something approximating this for =
some users in coming years? Yeah, I think so, maybe not as quickly as we =
once thought. It may actually be true that there is a 7-year gap =
between the reality of text and audio archives and another 7 between =
audio and video (the paper expounding this theory is linked from =
somewhere on this site but I can't find it right now < =
http://www.dcs.shef.ac.uk/spandh/projects/swag/>) .

In the meantime, how about some hybrid approaches? Some of Lisa's =
suggestions might work, though I personally would prefer that if it =
arrives as a digital file, it should stay digital. But burning and =
circulating CDs and DVDs could work; the purchased digital copy then =
becomes an archival master. Providing a lower bit rate version for some =
users, etc. should work--I'm still holding out for on-the-fly server =
based transcoding. Definitely our catalog/circ systems have to become =
smarter as well, so that they can handle the "circulation" of some of =
these digital formats.

I agree these technologies are expensive and difficult to implement and =
maintain. And I of course agree that we don't want to see vendors =
priced out or squeezed out or sucked up into giant media monster. But =
there should be a way to transition, gently, to digital without losing =
what we've got, legally speaking.

In the meantime, if we stay in the VHS-DVD buying mode for a good many =
years to come that's fine by me, I'd rather have that than DRM shoved =
down my throat.

</rant>
Claire

---GARY---

Ok. Stop.

Let me inject a bit of reality (at least MY perception of reality) into
this discussion, and that reality has to do with

1. The present and likely future of library budgets, both staff and =
materials
2. The present and likely future of commercially acquired digital moving
image content

<snip>
--=20
___________________________________________
M. Claire Stewart
Head, Digital Media Services
Marjorie I. Mitchell Multimedia Center
Northwestern University Library
(847) 467-1437
claire-stewart@northwestern.edu
http://staffweb.library.northwestern.edu/staff/cstewart/
http://copyrightreadings.blogspot.com =
<http://copyrightreadings.blogspot.com/>=20
_______________________________________________
Videolib mailing list
Videolib@library.berkeley.edu
http://www.lib.berkeley.edu/mailman/listinfo/videolib

Gary Handman
Director
Media Resources Center
Moffitt Library
UC Berkeley
ghandman@library.berkeley.edu
http://www.lib.berkeley.edu/MRC=20

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Patrons borrow videos from our PL collection for a couple of = obvious=20 reasons--we have stuff that the video store does NOT have (all the great = educational stuff that folks on this list have been talking about) and = we have=20 stuff that they can get for free instead of renting at the video = store.  I=20 can only assume that as video becomes more easily available in new = formats=20 (whatever these may be--disposable DVDs and streaming as two examples), = our=20 patrons will come to us wanting to get video in the new formats.  = Not that=20 different than the demand for DVD instead of VHS.  Not that all = decisions=20 are, or can be budget-wise, based solely on what the patrons want...but = it seems=20 worth investigating.
 
Ten=20 years from now, if a lot of our patrons have good bandwidth into their = homes and=20 they could stream movies from the PL catalog for free (just like they = used to=20 check out VHS for free), wouldn't they want to do = that?  Because=20 current developments in the consumer market may affect our ability to = meet this=20 demand ten years from now (should we decide to do so), it seems = like we=20 need to get involved now to try to keep the digital options = for=20 libraries open.
 
Lisa=20 Irwin (exchanging student hat for library hat)
Audiovisual Services
Kalamazoo Public Library
Library of the Year 2002 =
(269) 553-7923
lisai@kpl.gov
 

 -----Original = Message-----
From:=20 Gary Handman [mailto:ghandman@library.berkeley.edu]
Sent: = Thursday,=20 May 29, 2003 11:46 AM
To:=20 videolib@library.berkeley.edu
Subject: Re: [Videolib] (no=20 subject)

So?  What does all this have to do with=20 libraries?   What exactly (E*X*A*C*T*L*Y) would licensing = digital=20 video content
(an oxymoron at present) buy us?  (I'm not = willing to be=20 obtuse here, really)

Here's my answer to=20 = myself:
        --Digital=20 access would be an immense leap forward as a way of providing = unique=20 primary source materials=20 = and
        dig= ital=20 library collections to our users (an extension of the various digital = library=20 initiatives now under=20 = sail
        in= most=20 ARL=20 = libraries.

        = --Digital=20 storage and access might (but only might) be a way of dealing with the = issue=20 of preservation=20 = (there
        = are=20 LOTS of qualifications=20 = here)

        --Digital=20 storage and access would provide a solution to physical storage=20 problems

That's about it. 

As I said earlier, I'm = not=20 vaguely willing to consider  "licensing scenarios" until there is = content=20 in place to worry about licensing (if the only content providers are = the=20 Viacoms of the world, the hell with it!  Let the consumer market = deal=20 with the issue).  


I'm not vaguely willing to = put energy=20 and money into the matter until I can see clear benefits of going = there in=20 terms of the library's mission (now or in the future).  Somehow, = I don't=20 think that mission will include us becoming the Big Kazaa's or = Napsters in the=20 sky... =20 =
 



      &nbs= p; =20

 



At 02:57 PM 5/28/2003 -0500, you = wrote:
Gary, I don't think we're = necessarily=20 disagreeing, but see what you think.

Some more thoughts about = a=20 possible future: why should we wait for the licensing scenarios to = kick=20 in?  Do we have to wait for the equivalent of Elsevier (or = maybe=20 Disney, I guess, or Viacom) to come in and try to force The Big Deal = on=20 us?   Or worse, to do it little-by-little so that it's = hard to see=20 the whammy coming? Can't we have a position to begin with that = licensing=20 should be approached with extreme prejudice?  If all the = biggies are=20 planning to bypass us eventually (?), what's to be gained by jumping = in to=20 licensing now?

Every time one of these gouging pay for = subscription=20 or DRM-ed to death audio or video services dies a nasty death I rub = my hands=20 with glee.  Will they eventually become the norm? Perhaps, but = I look=20 to audio as a sign of what's coming with video and I don't see that = any of=20 the providers have come up with a good model yet for selling digital = directly to the consumer.  I personally don't believe that this = is the=20 fault of those out there supposedly pirating content, either. I = firmly=20 believe that when there is a fair and reasonably priced system for = paying=20 for, downloading and repeatedly using their digital content, people = will=20 take to it.

As for whether vendors will cut out libraries and = go=20 directly to the consumer, that was the old scary scenario with = electronic=20 print publishing, and I haven't seen that wipe out libraries YET. = [Granted,=20 among other differences, the print shift is a distribution and a = format=20 shift whereas with audio and video consumers are already accustomed = to=20 having their access mediated by technology.]  Our library,=20 unfortunately, licenses every journal under the sun and is getting = firmly=20 into the ebook business.  My guess is that we are by far the = biggest=20 purchasers of eBooks on campus, but of course I lack data to back = that=20 statement up.

And I think I disagree with you about the = technical=20 problems, Gary. Absolutely, at this point in time, it is = inconceivable for=20 even a college library, let alone a k-12 or a public library, to = consider=20 providing a unicast, video-on-demand service with, say, high bitrate = MPEG2.  But will it be possible to do something approximating = this for=20 some users in coming years? Yeah, I think so, maybe not as quickly = as we=20 once thought.  It may actually be true that there is a 7-year = gap=20 between the reality of text and audio archives and another 7 between = audio=20 and video (the paper expounding this theory is linked from somewhere = on this=20 site but I can't find it right now <http://www.dcs.shef.ac.uk/spandh/projects/swag/>= ;)=20 .

In the meantime, how about some hybrid approaches?  = Some of=20 Lisa's suggestions might work, though I personally would prefer that = if it=20 arrives as a digital file, it should stay digital.  But burning = and=20 circulating CDs and DVDs could work; the purchased digital copy then = becomes=20 an archival master.  Providing a lower bit rate version for = some users,=20 etc. should work--I'm still holding out for on-the-fly server based=20 transcoding.  Definitely our catalog/circ systems have to = become=20 smarter as well, so that they can handle the "circulation" of some = of these=20 digital formats.

I agree these technologies are expensive and = difficult to implement and maintain.  And I of course agree = that we=20 don't want to see vendors priced out or squeezed out or sucked up = into giant=20 media monster.  But there should be a way to transition, = gently, to=20 digital without losing what we've got, legally speaking.

In = the=20 meantime, if we stay in the VHS-DVD buying mode for a good many = years to=20 come that's fine by me, I'd rather have that than DRM shoved down my = = throat.

</rant>
Claire




---GARY---
Ok.  Stop.

Let me = inject a bit=20 of reality (at least MY perception of reality) into
this = discussion,=20 and that reality has to do with


1.  The present = and likely=20 future of library budgets, both staff and materials
2. The = present and=20 likely future of commercially acquired digital moving
image=20 content

<snip>
--=20
___________________________________________
M. Claire=20 Stewart
Head, Digital Media Services
Marjorie I. Mitchell = Multimedia=20 Center
Northwestern University Library
(847)=20 467-1437
claire-stewart@northwestern.edu
http://staffweb.library.northwestern.edu/staff/cstewar= t/
http://copyrightreadings.blogspot.com
_________= ______________________________________
Videolib=20 mailing list
Videolib@library.berkeley.edu
http://www.lib.berkeley.edu/mailman/listinfo/videolib<= /A>

Gary Handman
Director
Media Resources Center
Moffitt Library
UC Berkeley
ghandman@library.berkeley.edu
http://www.lib.berkeley.edu/MRC =

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