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VRT 2016 Annual Executive Board Meeting Minutes

Video Round Table (VRT) Membership and Executive Board Meeting

ALA Annual Convention

June 27, 2016

Orlando, Florida

 

Present: Brian Boling, Andy Horbal, Lowell Lybarger, Steven Milewski, Nell Chenault, Laine

Thielstrom, Michele McKenzie, Phil Hallman, Lorraine Wochna, Laura Jenemann, Rachel King,

Leigh Rockey (UVA-incoming secretary), Erin Miller (Univ of North Texas), Carlton Jackson

(Univ of Maryland), Howard Besser (later).

 

I. Call to Order

President Brian Boling called the meeting to order at 8:50 am.

 

II. Roll Call

All the participants introduced themselves. We welcomed new VRT Secretary-elect Lee Rocky

and new participant Erin Miller.

 

III. Report from ALA Executive Board Liaison

The representative from ALA was not present at this time.

 

IV. Approval of ALA Midwinter 2015 minutes

Deferred to the August VRT Board meeting.

 

V. Member Reports

 

A. Treasurer report - Lowell Lybarger

$22,034 to begin

$2,002 from dues

$339 in expenses from April

$23,697 end total

Discussion:

There is a real need to create public awareness of ALA in order to sustain it and grow into the

future. The attendees numbers for the conference are down: 22,00 attendees in SF, only

16,000 in Orlando. The roundtables are doing well for ALA and that is one area of potential growth and

development in order to increase new participation. There are a lot of new ones so there will be

some interest in seeing if they continue to do as well. New programs and salary increases for workers are some new challenges faced by the

organization.

 

B. Website Report - Andy Horbal

Andy reported that Maureen Cropper will take over as the VRT webmaster as he begins the

duties of Vice Chair-elect. Maureen has been part of the Communications Committee for some

time and has been involved with the web previously so he is confident that this transition will be

a smooth one.

 

Discussion:

Michele suggested that a good point of comparison might be to take a look at the Asia Pacific

Libraries Association Roundtable/Division (APALA) site. This is not so much a hosting inquiry

but more for the design/structure that they might use as a point of inspiration. We might want to

find out why they choose what they did and how it’s working? At this point we have a bunch of pages, so using another host would allow us to delete the pages and maintain it more easily and update more frequently.

Question to explore: Can it be searchable on the ALA page?

So questions will have to be asked before going forward. These conversations will take place

throughout the year at the monthly meetings.

 

C. Communications Committee - Rachel King

It appears that Rachel and Maureen are both rotating off. They have been asked to do

interviews with some of the previous VRT members in order to provide an historical perspective.

Rachel  has just posted an interview she did recently with Gary Handman.

 

Discussion:

Nell has information regarding past chairs and galas and can offer that if it can be of help.

Rachel has not been able to get any photos. Nell said she has some photos from past galas

and can provide those too if needed. She has a VRT Box of information but will send it back.

Any current information should be sent to it. She also has some personal photos.

Laura suggested getting additional interviews from past members and that the History page on

the website might be a place for this.

Freedom to View is a previous session that we can be proud of and show how the group has

affected change in the past.

Lowell suggested we might want to promote how the group’s positions and activities can be very

positive. Since he joined, he has done things differently and participation and awareness of

how others do things has impacted him and his work positively.

Carlton suggest that he documents from public libraries might be useful for jogging memory of

past events. There were videos shot of previous Chairs although he has no knowledge of what

may have happened to them.

Michele suggests that doing a history is in order for the upcoming year. Perhaps looking in

American Libraries for previous information. There may be advertisements for Gala events.

Any selfies for this year’s mixer might be culled.

 

D. Membership Committee—Brian on behalf of Matthew Windsor

Matthew cannot continue due to job constraints. We will need to find a replacement.

Membership numbers appear to be down.

 

Discussion:

Nell suggested that the membership chair be part of the ALA New Members Round Table.

Michele reminded us that we should be reaching out to a more diverse group of membership

including Spectrum scholars and LGBT and that the various ALA programs are a way to reach

out.

Nell—we used to have more YOUSA (sp?) members. Also Maker Spaces members might be a

good target area for growth.

 

E. Program Committee—Laine Thielstrom & Steven Milewski

Laine and Steven reported that the programs offered by VRT during Annual went very well.

PARS went well and the instructional program was packed and they needed more chairs

Attendance number estimates breakdown:

43—B Movies

45—Section 108

83—Streaming Survey

140—Video Production

26—Publishing

 

Discussion:

It it clear that co-sponsorship is a good way to go in order to secure attendees and to make

people more aware of VRT and how it might relate to them, even if they didn’t think it might

initially.

Laine said she and Steven learned a lot during this process. One area in particular that can be

improved in communication with presenters regarding how they do their presentations and how

proposals are accepted. We need a better form for the proposal process and make suggestions

that presenters make more use of visuals during presentations. Perhaps a meeting should be

held prior to the session in order to discuss what we can expect and to strongly suggest that the

presenter use some kind of visual aids?

They will need to put out a call for new members.

Michele added that she did Now Screenings this year and is interested in possibly tying them

into the program committee. It’s not hard to do but it would be helpful to have this be an

ongoing part of the programming committee. Perhaps do three films per year on a regular

basis.

She added that Now Showing is an ALA sponsored event. You have to approach them and

suggest titles. But now that she has done it once, we know who to talk to, contacts, etc.

That can be included in the governance part and then passed on to the programming

committee. Perhaps it could be part of notables? Or at the very least one title from the

notables list might be included at Annual.

Brian asked: perhaps Michele could continue for the next year and help to shepherd them?

It was noted that about 65 people attended in total for the two screenings.

Michele suggests working with local filmmakers in order to avoid some of the costs associated

with ALA registration.

Lorraine—do the screenings have to be in the daytime?

Nell—we did have evening screenings previously.

Michele—will check and see if this is an option.

Brian—The Citizen Four screening with guest Glenn Greenwald was a successful

screening/programming tie-in

Michele—It is VERY expensive to do this kind of thing, particularly with skyping. ALA costs are

much higher than if one were to do this a one’s own institution.

Officially you are supposed to go through conference services and pay for this kind of service.

Andy—he was able to use google hangout for Scott’s involvement in the publishing presentation

and that worked out well. Something to consider.

 

F. Gala Committee Report - Lorraine Wochna

Lorraine began by indicating that she will need volunteers. She already has Julia Churchill,

Monique and Andy (who as vice-chair is automatically part of the committee). She does not have venue yet. She will start sending out “save the dates” soon. She is working with Video Data Bank. They are beyond excited to be working with us.

Video Data Bank is preserving the Videofreex collection so this might be a good tie-in. One of Howard’s students did her thesis on the Videofreex which lead to the preservation of this collection. Videofreexs were artists who took up video portapacks when this technology was first available. They moved to Lansdale, NY and got license for a local television station. They lived in a house communally and went out during the day and shot footage and then showed their stuff on local television.

Michele would like to do a Chicago focus. She has pitched a program called: A City of Broad Shoulders which is a focus on artists with Chicago focus.

SRRT—possible ACRL Arts and two possible cross-promotion and co-sponsoring partners is

another option.

They also suggested an archiving/preservation program as a second program.

So this could work as a Gala/Programming/Now Showing collaboration.

Museum of the Contemporary Art is a possible venue option. They do have in-house catering

and ease of use but it is higher cost.

The old main library (Cultural Center) and the Chicago Film Archive are possible venue.s

$3400 for the MCAC space.

 

Discussion:

Brian asked to begin an open discussion on ticket prices.

How would people feel about raising $5.00 prices?

SF expenses were almost $7,000.

Michele—perhaps change up the model which would really try to fill up a theater for the

programming rather than use this a “feed people” event. This includes two tickets that don’t

expire for the museum.

Video Data Bank can possibly take care of any honorariums for their artists.

We need to be clear on the number of comp tickets. Since this is a larger venue, this is less of

an issue. It can accomodate walk ups and comps. The comps were for sponsors and dvd

donations. This has not always been the case. Previously they were simply mentioned not

comped.

Lorraine would like to be finished with a proposal by the end of July.

Brian—let’s shoot for the August business meeting call.

 

G Notables - Brian on behalf of Linda Fredericksen

At this time, there are about 20 nominees. Please submit ideas if you have some suggestions.

The deadline is generally in late November/early December. The decisions are made at the

Midwinter meeting.

 

H. Nominations - Laura Jenemann

Nothing at this time because the positions are filled.

 

I. IFLA - Michael Miller or Deb B.

Nothing from either of them at this time.

 

VI. Ten Minute Break

 

VII. Old Business

 

A. Kino Scholarship

Only two applicants have applied for the Kino scholarship at this point.

There were some problems with the forms and some difficulties receiving materials from the

candidates.

 

B. VRT Publications

Andy believes that there is a specific need to produce materials intended for and to represent

media librarianship. One that is opened both for peer review and non-peer reviewed articles and

information. Andy is suggesting a kind of hybrid approach.

 

Discussion:

Rachel—it would be great to have something that we can call our own.

Consensus is this would have to be open access and multi modal

ALA has been encouraging publications so Andy is suggesting that we circle back and see what

guidance they can offer us is we are willing to go forward. Perhaps Matthew Windsor has a

contact?

Andy is willing to take this us as a vice-Chair project.

Nell—we did newsletters previously so maybe it could be a blend of this kind of thing.

Andy—maybe instead of occasional, it could be an annual.

Laine—pointed out the In Transition—the Society of Cinema and Media Studies approach.

 

VIII. New Business

 

A. Codifying rules for VRT/Vendor Relationships

Michele had proposed this discussion topic and since she had to leave, Brian is suggesting that

we delay this to the August meeting.

Nell—there is a vendor relations roundtable. Perhaps we can look at their website to see if

there is anything that might be helpful.

Nell—there has been separate membership fees for vendors.

 

B. Discussion of Copyright Office 108 meetings - Laura Jenemann

Laura asked if the group would like to submit comments on behalf of the upcoming

recommendations that are being suggested for discussion?

Discussion:

Andy--Should we wait to see what the recommendation are first? Carrie Russell has said that they

may have already made up their minds

July 7 is the deadline so there is very little time to respond.

Howard—the current commissioner of copyright has said that during her term, she wants to

rewrite section 108. ALA’s response has been that we don’t want this to happen during this

commissioner and during this current Congress.

The feeling is that we will likely lose ground rather than gain.

Much of the discussions have been private so there are a lots of suspicions and they very well

may have decided what they are going to do and the sessions are more or less a pro forma.

Nell—she spoke with Carrie Russell and she thinks we should submit but that they may want to trick us.

Carrie would not be submitting these and not through Carrie.

Nell spoke with Kathleen Delorenta from the Music Library Association (MLA) and she has many

similar concerns. They are planning on submitting a comment.

Laura—need to state something that is consistent with ALA.

Howard—in ten days, there is no way that we can come up with a proper consensus.

We might be able to come up with something related to the 3 copy rule.

Older video formats are automatically by their nature deteriorating.

In general, 108 has worked for us. We are concerned with the opening up of this section.

Andy—let’s go ahead and develop a statement for the next round

Laura—she would like to try and work on this and develop an end goal. She can offer a hard

number of unique vhs based on her study.

Andy--We agree with the Alliance that 108 works for us.

Nell—Use the VRT listserv as a platform for sending out a statement and see if we can can

support and assistance from members not a the meeting.

Laura—she likes the statement of support issue.

While we have issues with it, in general 108 has worked and we would continue to work on

clarifying where it doesn’t work

Howard—since there is so little time to do a really adequate job, perhaps we could suggest that

the statement is it’s on behalf of the board rather than the overall membership?

Nell—proposed that we put together a working group to develop a statement for the future and

that we contact the ALA to let them know that what we are doing. And not put this on the

website.

Laura—maybe work with AMIA as well as VRT membership?

Howard—as a founding member of AMIA’s copyright group, they have not supported an official

stance on this because of studio members.

Laura—would like to become involved if someone wants to head the committee.

Kathleen from the Music Library Association joined the meeting at 11:26 am

She presented a brief overview of MLA’s involvement with this issue:

MLA has already requested a meeting and has a phone meeting on July 12. On the meeting

request form, there is a comment form and they are encouraging individuals to add comments

about the lack of transparency and to push for a contractual override. That is something that

everyone agrees on. They are going to make sure they don’t lose access to fair use.

The upcoming deadline is not necessarily a deadline to submit changes but rather it is a

deadline to be able to request a meeting.

Discussion:

We need to parrot what the bigger ALA statements have been up until now.

They are turning to the content industry to see how the laws might be changed rather than the

library world.

They think that we don’t care and we need to make that clear that this not the case.

Faculty should be contacted.

Proposal—Send personal comments and Endorse the previously LCA proposed statement

would be at the least we could do.

Also--it would be helpful for us to make suggestion concerning what people say in the

comments box is helpful.

 

Howard—Motion

Task someone to write an email to the VRT membership list.

Include links to the previous email that went out.

Include statement that there is a lack of transparency on this issue.

Encourage that individuals write comments and send to them.

Encourage that we include statements that can help on the comments section.

Clarification: who is willing to do this?

Nell is willing to draft this and Howard will help.

Second motion by Andy

We are not available to meet at this time but that we endorse the previous letter of LCA support

We unanimously agree on the support.

Steve seconds motion.

Approved.

This will be an Adhoc committee for now.

 

C. New Business item

Howard informed the group that a digital content committee met and suggested that it extend

their charge to include discussion about audio visual materials. Digital content working group

has been working on ebooks for some time. There have been meeting with publishers to tell

them to get them to sell to us, opening them up so they can be read on different devices. Also

have model contracts.

This group looks like it might be willing to take on a common user interface.

What is on the table:

Extend deg & Jane’s study about how this material is used;

Some type of analysis of what our membership really wants;

Muscling the vendors;

Looking at the Netflix and Amazon streaming models and opening them up for library purchase

Working towards guidelines of streaming contracts.

Howard suggests that we form an adhoc committee to work on discussing some of these issues.

If we wait until Jim Neel becomes ALA President, then we lose time.

 

Discussion:

Good idea? Bad Idea? Priority?

Nell—suggested w look to journals for some licensing models.

Loraine—maybe get input from serials and collections people?

Brian—voiced concern is that same members who generally get involved in VRT activities will

also get involved in this so it would be helpful to seek out new, differentvoices. Perhaps get

some more student involvement?

The MLA rep asked: is there some way of collaborating?

Try to make a bigger broadbase voice.

Howard—if we can get a couple of people from this group to help with this to try and get a group

together.

Brian is willing to be the person as past chair.

Others voiced approval that we put a call to the membership on this topic.

Brian moves, Lorrain seconds the approval of Howard’s adhoc committee formation.

 

IX. Announcements

No new announcements at this time.

 

X. Adjournment

Brian thanked everyone for their contributions.