Ready to profile a new publication for the LIS Publications Wiki? Refer to this template guide to help make your new publication entry as useful to the LIS community as possible.
- If you are not already a member of the wiki core team, please email us at lispubswiki [at] gmail.com before you begin. We’ll verify that the publication you have in mind is a good fit for the wiki, and we’ll make sure someone else isn’t already working on a related profile. We can also send you a Word template to help you prepare your draft. And if you don’t have time to draft the profile yourself, we can work with you to create it.
- If you are already a member of the wiki core team, see the Support for Wiki Core Team section for further guidance.
Please reference your sources as you build your draft. References are important, both to give the wiki credibility and to make it easier for future editors to verify information and update the publication profile.
We would also appreciate your suggestions for tags that could associated with this publication. For guidance, see our page on Tagging.
If you have editorial style questions, see the wiki’s Style Guidelines page.
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About the publication
Title: What is the title of the publication? Put it in italics.
Website: What is the URL of the publication’s website?
Purpose, objective, or mission: Why does the publication exist?
Target audience: Who are the intended readers of the publication? Give just a general description here; details will come below.
Publisher: What’s the name of the publisher? Is it an association? A commercial business? An individual?
Peer reviewed? Are some or all contributions to the publication peer reviewed? Who decides which articles will be accepted, and how? Does the process involve a blind or double-blind peer review, or perhaps an open peer review by editorial committee? (If article selection decisions are made solely by an editor rather than through a more formal peer-review process—even if the editor is an LIS professional—the publication is not considered “peer reviewed.”) The publication’s review and acceptance process can be described more fully in the Submission and Review Process section below.
Type: The “type” indicated here will determine how we categorize this profile on the wiki site. Consider the purpose, content, and publisher, choose the category that seems to fit the primary goal of the publication, and explain why that’s the most appropriate category. Is this:
- An LIS scholarly journal?
- An LIS professional or trade publication?
- A civilian publication, primarily intended for readers outside of the LIS profession?
Sometimes the answer isn’t obvious, or the publication is a hybrid, and you’ll need to offer some analysis. It can often be tricky, for example, to tell the difference between a scholarly journal and a professional or trade publication. Some publications are peer reviewed, but their content is not research oriented; generally these publications are not considered scholarly.
If this is a civilian publication (a publication read primarily by lay readers, nonlibrarians), explain what kind of civilian publication it is. Is it a commercial magazine? A local newspaper? A newsletter from some non-LIS association? Something else?
Medium: What is the publication’s mode of distribution? Is it printed? Online? Distributed in some other way? If the publication offers both print and online versions, are there differences between the two?
Content: What types of information does the publication convey? Does the editorial format call for standard types of articles and columns? Is an editorial calendar of upcoming themes or special issues available?
Frequency of publication: How often is the publication released?
About the publication’s submission guidelines
Location of submission guidelines: Where can you find out about the publication’s submission requirements and guidelines for authors? If you don’t find submission guidelines, it may be because the publication doesn’t accept outside contributions. Or it may be that the editor takes an informal approach and guidelines haven’t been documented. You may need to query the editor to find out.
Types of contributions accepted: What types of pieces does the publisher accept from outside writers? Research papers or journalistic feature articles? Opinion pieces? Reviews? Letters? Other pieces? Are particular types of contributions being actively sought? Are there stated requirements for the length of different types of pieces?
Submission and review process: Does the publication require initial queries or proposals? Does it accept completed manuscripts? What happens to articles after they’re submitted?
Editorial tone: Are there stated guidelines for the tone of articles? Does the general tone seem formal? Informal? Academic? If there’s no indication of tone in the guidelines, what can you conclude from reading some sample articles?
Style guide used: Does the publication require the use of a particular style guide and/or dictionary? Does it use a published guide, an internal “house style,” or a combination of the two? Is there no mention of a required style guide?
Conclusion: Evaluation of the publication’s potential for LIS authors
Critically review the publication and its potential for LIS practitioners, educators, and student authors. Is this publication authoritative and credible? What types of authors might consider submitting work to this publication? You may wish to give examples of LIS-oriented topics that could be appropriate to write about for this publication. A citation analysis might also be appropriate.
About the publication’s readers
Publication circulation: How many readers are there? If this is a print publication, what is its circulation? If it’s an online publication, what can you find out about readership numbers?
Audience location and language or cultural considerations: Where are these readers located? Is the publication focused on a local community or a particular state or country? Does it try to reach people all around the world? Will the location of these readers or the demographics of their region affect your language or approach as an author? Think about whether these readers would understand your cultural references.
Reader characteristics: Are most of the readers of a particular gender, age, cultural group, or other demographic? Do these readers share similar types of workplaces, jobs, levels of education, or professional interests? Such characteristics may be relevant for specialized publications.
Now think about the audience’s mindset. Are these readers likely to have established opinions or attitudes about library subjects? Do they share particular values? Does the publication have a noticeably progressive or conservative bent? These things are especially important to know if want to write a persuasive opinion piece.
Readers’ knowledge of LIS subject matter: How much will the publication’s readers already know about LIS topics and issues? Will they understand LIS jargon? This is important to think about before you start writing.
Conclusion: Analysis of reader characteristics and their potential impact on authors
Think about what these readers have in common—or how diverse they are—and how their collective profile might affect articles you submit to this publication. As an author, what are the most important audience characteristics to keep in mind? Their level of technical knowledge? Their scholarly bent? Their interest in children’s issues? How might you adjust the tone of your writing or your approach to an LIS subject so you can reach this audience effectively?
If you did not address this in the conclusion of the Publication Analysis section, you might give examples of LIS-oriented topics or writing strategies that would be appropriate for this audience.
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