PROSE Awards, an academic boycott, BEA opening to the rabble, and more; it’s the Scholarly BIN

A roundup of recent publishing news of note.

2011 PROSE Awards announced

Last Tuesday, the Professional and Scholarly Publishing division of the Association of American Publishers held the annual PROSE Awards luncheon, where over 45 prizes were awarded to books from across the scholarly publishing world. We’re happy to note that three JHU Press books took honors. Hart Crane’s Poetry, by John Irwin, and The Prodigious Muse,  by Virginia Cox, received honorable mentions in literature and Bats of the United States and Canada, by Michael J. Harvey, J. Scott Altenbach, and Troy L. Best, took the same in the popular science category.

A Global Library Consortium?

Writing in Publishers Weekly last week, Peter Brantley describes efforts underway among librarians to create a Global Library Consortium that would pool resources to pay for the rights to e-books. Brantley describes a Groupon-like process where libraries would bid on books to be placed in an open-access collection and publishers would be committed to releasing individual titles only after bids hit a certain price-point.

Academics boycotting Elsevier

Scholars and researchers across the globe are boycotting  medical and scientific publisher Elsevier over what the protesters contend are rapacious pricing policies, The reports. As of this morning 4142 academics have registered pledges with The Cost of Knowledge not to do things such as publish with and referee or do editorial work for the company’s journals until “they radically change how they operate.” The company contends that the per-use cost of academic content through Elsevier is lower than ever.

BookExpo America to admit the great unwashed?

Following in the footsteps of many other large book industry trade shows, BookExpo America is considering opening its exhibit hall to the general public, Shelf Awareness notes. Writing on the BEA’s official blog, The BEAN, show director Steve Rosato says: “There is increasing value for engaging consumers directly while there is a growing appetite from consumers to know what is coming from their favorite authors and personalities that are writing books.” If approved by the BEA executive committee, the expo would in 2013 shift the conference dates to run Thursday through Saturday, with the public being admitted on Saturday.

Chicago Tribune unveils new literary supplement

Bucking the trend among news organizations, the Chicago Tribune will at the end of this month begin publishing Printers Row, a weekly supplement to the newspaper that will feature reviews, literary news, author interviews, and other related content. The 24-page optional Sunday insert will cost current subscribers an additional $99.00 a year and will be available in single issues on Amazon for $2.99 each.

The Scholarly BIN (Book Industry News) is a semi-regular roundup of news about and of interest to the scholarly publishing industry. Got a tip? Please send it along to Brendan Coyne.