BOARD OF PUBLICATIONS
July 5, 2009
These minutes were prepared from a recording of the meeting provided by Chair, Paul Edwards.
The ACB Board of Publications met during the annual national convention in Orlando, Florida, Sunday, July 5, 2009 at approximately 10:25am (EDT). Members present were: Paul Edwards, Marcia Dresser, Judy Jackson, Ken Stewart; Absent: Jenine Stanley. Ex Oficio members present were: Ron Milliman; Absent: Larry turnbull. ACB Staff/Contractors present were: Sharon Lovering, Earlene Hughes. Guest: Pratik Patel.
Due to excessive noise levels in the original location of the meeting Paul called that the meeting be temporarily adjourned to another location before beginning the agenda. The meeting was relocated and continued at approximately 10:45 am (EDT).
Judy moved approval of the May minutes. The motion was seconded and approved.
Web Site Update:
Paul expressed the board’s appreciation for Earlene’s work during the past year and condolences on the recent death of her mother. Earlene reported that last summer the ACB store was updated to work with the new ACB server and new software at the Minneapolis office. The store was up and running in October, in time for the holiday season. The update also made it possible to have on-line donations. Other projects during the past year involved scholarship and legislative seminar forms. In November the process of updating the web site itself began with meetings of the BOP Web Site Task force. Earlene was pleased to report that after this convention, on-line dues payment should be ready with forms for affiliate use if desired.
Earlene also reported on the work of a sub committee of the Information Resources Committee studying the production of DAISY materials. The group is learning to use the Eclipse software from IRTI to convert ACb materials into the DAISY format. The 2009 convention program is available in DAISY format and works with a variety of DAISY readers.
Ron reported that his committee’s major accomplishment during the past year was the mentoring program. Twelve participants took what they learned during monthly calls back to their affiliates. In the coming year the committee will open the program via quarterly conference calls to anyone wishing to participate. The committee is also considering production of a handbook on public service announcements to provide some degree of uniformity in the ACb message.
Sharon reported that over the past year she has taken a course on Microsoft Office basics and plans to take more advanced courses in the coming year. Paul noted that from the written report Sharon gave to the ACb Board of Directors and BOP, we have produced our publications in appropriate time frames and our readership has stayed constant but has changed a bit in terms of formats. Email continues to increase steadily as a preferred format.
Paul and Sharon addressed a question from the floor about the need for differing formats for those not using computers. Sharon noted that cassettes were still available and would be at least through 2012 but that she is looking at alternatives as NLS undergoes its conversion to digital media and its new player.
Regarding issues with items placed in the “High Tech Swap Shop” portion of the Braille forum, Paul noted that the BOP had discussed the issue of one particular person who routinely changes her submissions and has multiple submissions per year. He stated that the BOP felt it fare to limit people to one submission to the column per year and that the same submission could not run in more than two issues due to space constraints. These limitations should be added to the BOP Policy Manual as well.
The BOP continues to advise the Editor that she has a great deal of discretion as to what to allow in this column. Paul noted that the BOP will also consult with Melanie Brunson regarding the value of pressing harassment charges against the individual in question over her repeated telephone calls to Sharon, sometimes 70 or more over short periods of time.
Paul reported on the activities of the BOP over the past year. The BOP was proud to announce that eight affiliates submitted publications for the Hollis K. Liggett Award. There were also a number of excellent submissions for the Ned E. Freeman award as well.
The BOP completed editing and revising its policy manual.
Paul introduced Pratik Patel who reported on the work of the Web Site Task force, begun during the past year to update ACB’s web site. He is serving as a consultant to the task force and explained the concepts behind content management software. The group has chosen Drupal, a free content management software package that will allow the site, once designed, to be easily updated with new information while maintaining its look and operation. A number of other features, such as RSS feeds, can also be easily incorporated into the web site. Pratik noted that currently the group is awaiting confirmation that Drupal can be installed on the ACb servers.
Paul reported that during the past year, the position of ACB Radio Managing director was taken out of the budget. ACb Radio is currently being managed by a team consisting of himself, Larry Turnbull and Marlaina Leiberg. Larry is acting manager on a volunteer basis and will be the designated ex Oficio member of the BOP.
Paul addressed the issue of his summaries of ACb board meetings not appearing in the Braille Forum. He noted that he had attended the meetings and written the summaries but had not submitted them for publication. Ken proposed that in the case of board meetings that are recessed rather than adjourned, summaries be submitted of the existing actions unless otherwise appropriate, and that submission of board meeting summaries be given top priority in the Braille Forum. Paul noted that the ACB constitution states that reports be given 30 days after a board meeting is adjourned, not recessed and that he would need to consult with the ACB board about whether the BOP representative could indeed make reports on recessed meetings to provide more timely coverage.
Ken moved that the following policy be proposed to the ACb Board of Directors that when an ACb Board of Directors meeting is recessed for a period of longer than three days, the BOP’s ex Oficio representative shall be obliged to complete a summary of the portion of the board meeting completed before the recess for publication in the Braille Forum. The motion was seconded and defeated in a roll-call vote , with Ken voting in the affirmative and Marcia and Judy voting in the negative.
Judy then moved that the BOP, in cooperation with the ACb board, propose the following as a bylaw to the ACb constitution: When an ACb Board of Directors meeting is recessed for a period of longer than three days, the BOP’s ex Oficio representative shall be obliged to complete a summary of the portion of the board meeting completed before the recess for publication in the Braille Forum. The motion was seconded and approved unanimously.
Internet Oversight Committee:
Paul addressed an issue from the floor regarding the chairmanship of the IOC after the untimely death of Chair, Barry Levine. It was noted that ACB President Mitch Pomerantz has taken over moderating both ACB email lists and has also taken over the chair of the IOC. Paul noted that he felt this was only a temporary situation and that on behalf of the BOP to reflect the concerns of the membership, he would encourage the ACb President to appoint a new chair to the IOC as soon as possible after the elections. Discussion from the floor indicated that this was not enough of a solution to the issue.
Ken moved that in view of the importance of an active Internet Oversight Committee and moderator for the ACB-L email list, the BOP urges the ACb president to make an appointment of the chair as soon as possible. The motion was seconded and amended to include the ACB president’s simultaneous naming of a full membership contingent to this committee within 30- days of the end of the convention. The motion was approved unanimously.
Advertising Rates for Convention Newspaper:
Ron brought up the issue of advertising rates for independent contractors in the convention newspaper and noted that the compromise currently in operation should have been more substantially discussed and voted upon by the BOP and ACb board. Paul explained that in the past, advertising rates had been set by the Convention Committee and BOP in cooperation and that the compromise was an attempt to correct differing information given out by various people. He noted that this issue was better discussed at the next BOP meeting to give it the time it deserved.
Braille Forum Here and There Column:
Ken asked what progress had been made at making the requested change from “By” to “Edited by” in the title of this column to indicate that we edited submitted material rather than creating it. Sharon stated that this change would appear in the July issue.
ACB Board Ex Oficio Member:
Judy moved that Marcia Dresser be appointed as the BOP Ex Oficio member to the ACb Board for the next year. It was also moved that Judy represent Marcia at the July 11 board meeting as she would be unable to attend. The motion was seconded and approved.
Email Subscription on Membership Forms:
Judy asked about the possibility of adding a field to the membership database showing people’s preference for email subscriptions to the Braille Forum. This is not possible with the current database. Paul encouraged everyone to push for creation and adoption of a new membership database as soon as possible to accommodate this and other changes.
Marcia reported that there were some initial problems with the Convention Ear, including file types for recording and that she was working to get the system up and running but it was not operational yet. Paul asked Marcia to take on responsibility for the 2010 Convention Ear as well. She agreed and asked that it be put on future agendas.
The next meeting of the BOP will take place via conference call on Monday, August 3 at 9:00pm
Ken moved to adjourn the meeting. The motion was seconded and approved.
Jenine Stanley, Recording Secretary EDT.