December and January have been all about launching B Sides, our lovely new open access electronic journal for the University of Iowa School of Library and Information Science! We hope the site will be ready to go live at the beginning of spring semester on January 19th, when we will begin soliciting submissions from current SLIS students and alumni.
As the founding editors, my colleague and I have been busy rounding up faculty sponsors, setting up the peer review process, customizing the content management software, working with a graphic designer, and meeting with both the University’s ITS department and Digital Library Services. Whew! In the meantime, here’s a little snippet from our homepage to give you an idea what B Sides will be all about:
“B Sides is an open access peer reviewed journal that showcases student work from the University of Iowa School of Library and Information Science, including writing, images, posters, presentation slides, audio recordings, and videos. It provides a space for current students and alumni to converse about their work and contribute to the scholarly literature of Library and Information Science.
“Regarding early vinyl records, B sides were a place where artists could push themselves intellectually and experiment without being constrained by the forms that their record labels believed would be commercially successful. For collectors, musicians’ B sides have become rare treasures that allow fans and scholars to more fully appreciate the nuances and intricacies of talented recording artists. The B side metaphor carried over from vinyl records to cassette tapes in the 1980s, when certain groups of underrepresented musicians weren’t being heard because record labels failed to recognize the value of their creative processes and would not produce their work. Refusing to accept silence, these innovative musicians took initiative and began producing and distributing their own “mix tapes.” Today, these musicians are considered among the most influential and important artists of that era.
“B Sides, the journal of the University of Iowa School of Library and Information Science, proudly carries the B side metaphor forward by giving an underrepresented group of new scholars a voice to experiment, explore, and contribute to a growing field.”