University of Michigan

Historic Michigan Campaign Under Way

 A victory for this high profile group of academic employees would be a victory for every cohort of unrepresented research assistants across the country.

Academic Freedom and the Digital Revolution

In spring 2009, the University of Michigan Press sent out a letter by e-mail to its authors announcing the end of business as usual at the press. Having entered into an agreement with the university library at Michigan, UM Press, the letter stated, had initiated “a transformative scholarly publishing model” in which all publications are to be made available primarily in digital format, with print-on-demand versions of texts available to bookstores, institutions, and individuals (Pochoda, letter). Long-term plans outlined by editor Philip Pochoda call for books to be “digitized and available to libraries and customers world-wide through an affordable sitelicense program,” as most academic journals currently are. The announcement stressed the revolutionary potential inherent in the shift online by suggesting that digital publications will be “candidates for a wide range of audio and visual digital enhancements—including hot links, graphics, interactive tables, sound files, 3D animation, and video.” This is not, in other words, simply a change in models of distribution, but also potentially a radical metamorphosis in modes of scholarship in the humanities.

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