SPN Wide Initiatives

Learn about current SPN-wide efforts – activities that crosscut working groups and affiliated projects.

Two-Year Seed Funded Launch

An Update from SPN’s Community Coordinator

Happy new year Software Preservation Network!

January is assessment season! SPN members completed Year One Evaluations, and working groups assessed progress on the 2019-2020 action plans. Working groups are putting on action plan workshops to map out their activities for 2020. These revised action plans combined with member feedback directly inform the work of both the Steering Committee and SPN staff as we actively design the roadmap for SPN beyond the two-year seed-funded period.

Throughout January we are collaborating with working group coordinators to put on action plan workshops that map out the group’s activities and support structures through 2020. The coordination and development of this workshop is made possible through a combination of members’ financial support for SPN staff and the willingness of our working groups to set aside dedicated time for annual planning.

And in order to develop leadership for the next generation of community leaders—whether in SPN or other spaces—we have designed a Facilitation & Coordination workshop that we will pilot with the community on February 24. It’s open to all members of SPN so please come and provide feedback afterward on the usefulness of this professional development offering!

We are halfway through this ambitious experiment of accelerating SPN from a motivated but precarious volunteer organization to community with an intentional sustainability plan. In taking stock of what you’ve done in just 12 months, I am again in awe. Please do take a moment to check out the 2019 highlights and celebrate our accomplishments!

Yours, in software preservation,
Jess Farrell


Software Preservation Bibliography Published by SPN’s Training & Education Working Group

Training & Education Working Group Releases Software Preservation Bibliography. Pictured above (clockwise beginning in the top left): Michael Olson, Neil Chue Hong, Devon Olson, Sherry Lake, and Katy Boss.  

Pictured above (clockwise beginning in the top left): Michael Olson, Neil Chue Hong, Devon Olson, Katy Boss, and Sherry Lake. 

We are delighted to announce the release of the Software Preservation Bibliography!

Created by SPN’s Training & Education Working Group, the Bibliography is a living, curated Zotero library of resources, tools, organizations, and research related to software preservation. The Bibliography currently contains over fifty resources that span multiple formats including reports, presentations, grant proposals, blog posts, worksheets, and more!

The Software Preservation Bibliography is a living resource that can be added to as new software preservation resources become available. Aware of a resource that isn’t yet represented? Let us know via this Google Form. SPN’s Training & Education Working Group will perform batch updates on a regular basis.

Conferences and Events

Mark Your Calendars: Upcoming Law & Policy Chat on Feb. 20 (Rescheduled from 2/6)

New Resource for SPN Members: Law & Policy Chats. An opportunity for members to chat with SPN's Law & Policy Advisor, Brandon Butler, and each other about their questions or concerns, plus learn more about how to use tools like the Best Practices and the DMCA Exemption to preserve and provide access to software. Who: SPN Members. When: Thursday, February 20 from 3:00-4:00 pm ET.

If you’re at a SPN member institution, mark your calendars for the next Law & Policy Chat on Thursday, February 20 from 3:00 to 4:00 pm ET. It’s your monthly opportunity to chat with SPN’s Law and Policy Advisor, Brandon Butler, about your software preservation questions and concerns.
All members should have received call-in information via email. We look forward to seeing you there! 

Note: February’s Law & Policy chat was originally scheduled for February 6th but has since been rearranged for February 20th. Please disregard any phantom calendar invites for 2/6 and plan to join us on the 20th! 

Quarterly Community Forum

Software Preservation Community Forum. Subscribe to the Software Preservation Network listserv to receive call-in information: http://bit.ly/spn-listserv

The Software Preservation Network invites you to join us for the upcoming Quarterly Software Curation and Preservation Community Forum taking place on Tuesday, March 10 at 8 am PT/10 am CT/11 am ET.  Each quarter, we invite our colleagues across professional and disciplinary communities to participate in an hour-long discussion on topics related to software curation, preservation, and reuse.

As a subscriber to to the Software Preservation Network listserv, you will receive reminders, calendar invites, and call-in information for the QCF via email.

If you are interested in discussing a specific topic during future Community Forums, submit your topics and questions via Google form. 

Affiliated Projects

Learn about SPN affiliated project activities and milestones. SPN affiliated projects focus on specific aspects of software preservation/curation that support the strategic goals of SPN.

Scaling Emulation as a Service Infrastructure

Timeline: January 2018 – June 2020
Funder(s): Andrew W. Mellon Foundation and Alfred P. Sloan Foundation
Awardee: Yale University

With the coming of the new year, the EaaSI program entered the home stretch of its initial grant-funded period. Our work over the last two months focused on preparations for this final leg of the journey and looked ahead to the next phase of the program. There’s plenty in store over the next few months and we can’t wait to share it with you including testing of EaaSI V.1.0.0., Node Host Symposia, Node  Host Reflections Blog Series, and the results of our latest community software prioritization efforts. 

Read the complete update here!

Fostering Communities of Practice: Software Preservation in Libraries, Archives, and Museums

Timeline:  June 2017 – May 2020
Funder(s): Institute for Museum and Library Services #RE-95-17-0058-17
Awardee: CalPoly State University

Outside of winter holidays, December and January were spent shifting focus away from active project activities towards a combination of reflection, synthesis, and refining resulting documentation. This synthesis work led us to wonder: how has our team evolved since the project began, both on the individual and the organizational level? In this update, we reflect on that question, plus Dr. Amelia Acker shares her interim report and protocols. 

Friendly reminder:  you can find members of the FCoP cohort at the International Digital Curation Conference (IDCC) in February and Code4Lib in March. 

Read the complete update here!

Code of Best Practices for Fair Use in Software Preservation

Code of Best Practices for Fair Use in Software Preservation

Timeline: January 2017 – June 2020
Funder(s): Alfred P. Sloan Foundation
Awardee: Association of Research Libraries

Wrapping Up the Code of Best Practices Grant

December 31, 2019 marked the end of the grant period for the Code of Best Practices in Fair Use for Software Preservation, which was generously supported by the Alfred P. Sloan Foundation. The grant was awarded to the Association of Research Libraries and funded the work of your humble narrator (Brandon Butler) along with Krista Cox at the Association of Research Libraries and the originators of the Fair Use Best Practices methodology, Peter Jasazi and Patricia Aufderheide.

One thing is for sure: the Code could never have happened without SPN. The passionate SPN team (especially the indomitable Jessica Meyerson) helped us get oriented and find all the right people to talk to, all the right things to read, and all the right meetings to attend. Then the wonderful folks we met through SPN spent hours talking with us on the telephone, meeting with us in small groups, and answering our nudge-y emails. So, on behalf of the Code team, I want to personally thank the SPN community for welcoming us into your conversations and sharing your wisdom, your anxieties, your passion, and your deep knowledge with us.

If you haven’t yet had a chance, it is worth perusing the revamped Software Code homepage on the SPN website. One of the last pieces of work funded by the grant was consolidating the diverse resources that the Code Team created (with big help, again, from SPN) into one convenient package that anyone can easily grok. Check out the short video we commissioned, summarizing the what, how, and why of the Code, as well as the Deep Dive into the legal foundations for fair use best practices, and the video recordings (with captions and transcriptions!) from all seven of the webinars in our series on legal issues in software preservation. You can also check out the scholarly article the Team published in the Journal of Copyright in Education and Librarianship, giving more of the background as well as the legal thinking that went into the Code. Finally, Pat Aufderheide recently wrote up the results of the survey we conducted late last year, looking into the impacts (so far) of the Code in the practitioner community.

And last but not least, take at look at the Oracle V. Google brief as it was filed with the Supreme Court. I was proud to be counsel of record on the brief, and grateful to Dave Hansen at Duke for his excellent drafting work on the brief. Jack Bernard at the University of Michigan and Jonathan Band, counsel to the Library Copyright Alliance, gave us valuable feedback. We were in good company—more than 25 different amicus briefs were filed in support of Google in the case, including briefs from Microsoft83 computer scientists, and 72 intellectual property scholars.

Join SPN

Do you appreciate the work that SPN has been doing over the last several years to broaden participation and ensure lawful preservation, sharing, and reuse of software? Would you like to SPN to continue its work of coordination, research, advocacy, and capacity building? Do you have ideas or a vision for the future of software preservation that you would like to see realized through the SPN community?

If you answered “Yes” to any of these questions, then consider supporting our work through membership or sponsorship. To learn more about the benefits of membership and sponsorship, visit: https://www.softwarepreservationnetwork.org/get-involved/

To join, download, complete and submit your SPN Participation Agreement to <jess.farrell@educopia.org>.

Preferred citation:

Software Preservation Network. (2020, February 5). Stacktrace: Volume 3, Issue 1. Software Preservation Network. https://www.softwarepreservationnetwork.org/stacktrace-volume-3-issue-1-dec-2019-jan-2020/