In the Library with the Lead Pipe

Publication Profiles > LIS Scholarly Journals > In the Library with the Lead Pipe

 

Publication analysis


About the publication

Title: In the Library with the Lead Pipe

ISSN: 1944-61951

Website: http://www.inthelibrarywiththeleadpipe.org/

Purpose, objective, or mission: From the website’s About page: “Lead Pipe believes libraries and library workers can change the world for the better. We improve libraries, professional organizations, and their communities of practice by exploring new ideas, starting conversations, documenting our concerns, and arguing for solutions.”2

Target audience: Educators, administrators, library support staff, technologists, and community members.3

Per editor Brett Bonfield: “We do our best to reach beyond librarians, administrators, etc. and also engage people who care about the same things that we care about, such as publishing, reading, knowledge, intellectual freedom . . . all the intersections between librarians and other fields, professions, avocations. We do this by trying to avoid jargon and by telling good stories, and we also do it by interviewing non-librarians and by asking non-librarians to write for us or serve as peer reviewers.”4

Publisher: The editorial staff of In the Library with the Lead Pipe5

Peer reviewed? Yes,6 by at least one external and one internal reviewer7

Type: An LIS scholarly publication that crosses over into the professional and trade publication category8

Medium: Online9

Content: The goals of Lead Pipe are to start conversations and to propose solutions to LIS problems and concerns. The content includes essays by the editorial board and articles by guest authors, including “educators, administrators, library support staff, technologists, and community members.”10 Articles range from advice to LIS students, to notes from LIS professionals in the workplace, to favorite books and commentary on current LIS-related news items such as retaining LGBTQ staff and library use of social media.11

Frequency of publication: Monthly12

About the publication’s submission guidelines

Location of submission guidelines: http://www.inthelibrarywiththeleadpipe.org/submission-guidelines/

Types of contributions accepted: Constructive criticisms and commentary from people experiencing the library from the inside as librarians, administrators, and support staff, as well as community members who interact with libraries. The goal is to provide perspective from all aspects of the library community. The editors encourage article proposals from LIS students and those new to the profession.13

Examples of material published include:

  • Original research with a discussion of its consequences and an argument for action.
  • Articles arguing for a particular approach, strategy or development in librarianship, with practical examples of how it might be achieved.
  • Transformative works with additional explanatory or interpretive content. For example, a transcription of an interview or panel discussion, with a substantial introduction explaining the importance of the subject to librarianship and a discussion of related literature.14

Submission and review process: Prospective authors are asked to submit a 200-word abstract, a link or attachment to writing samples, and a current resume or CV  using the link on the Submissions Guidelines page. Authors may also submit a completed article, from 2000-2500 words, with citations as necessary.15

A staff member will respond to submissions within a week, to indicate whether an article is appropriate to Lead Pipe publication goals in terms of content and style.16

According to Lead Pipe author instructions, “The author does the hard work of actually writing the article. Articles may have multiple authors, but in this case one author must be designated as the primary point of contact for the Editorial Board. Authors are also responsible for identifying an external reviewer. The external reviewer should have some professional connection to or knowledge of the article’s topic, and is expected to provide expert review and constructive feedback. The external reviewer does not necessarily have to be librarian. Authors may work with someone they already know or reach out to the professional community. The Editorial Board is happy to offer guidance in identifying and contacting an appropriate reviewer if needed.”17

Per editor Brett Bonfield, “Our goal is to make sure the article is factually accurate, well written, well edited, and interesting.”18

The process from selection to publication takes about six weeks, with Lead Pipe editors requesting feedback and drafts from the author as necessary. This is a highly collaborative process where editors work closely with writers to produce the most fabulous writing possible for the site. Prospective authors should consult the Guest Author Instructions, Framework for Guest Author Proposals, and Peer Review Guidelines before submitting.19

Editorial tone: Informal and engaging; informative yet relaxed. The articles are peer-reviewed, but speak to the entire community of people who work in and use the library. They are thoughtful, positive articles that pose challenging questions and educate readers on diverse aspects of the LIS world.20

Style guide used:  The Lead Pipe includes an in-house style guide in its submission guidelines. Authors may use any citation style, as long as it is consistently applied within an article. The editors encourage use of the first-person for many articles, and request that authors avoid use of the passive voice.21 See the site’s detailed Style Guide for more information.

Conclusion: Evaluation of publication’s potential for LIS authors

These are extremely LIS-student-friendly publication open to a great variety of topics within the field.22 The site has a registered ISSN number and although it has been awarded titles such as “€œBest General Blog”€ in 2012 from the Salem Press Library Blog Awards, the editors “feel that this rich peer review process sets us apart from scholarly blogs and puts us in the realm of “journal.””23 Many writers have referenced the site through other publications.24

The editors “encourage creative thinking, envelope-pushing, and constructive criticism,”25€œ while “articles indulging in non-constructive criticism will not be accepted.”26

 

Audience analysis


About the publication’s readers

Publication circulation: Not specified. According to Wikipedia, “Researcher Arthur Hendricks conducted a survey of 67 university librarians and archivists. He found that of those, 5% were regular readers of In the Library with the Lead Pipe.”27

Audience location and language or cultural considerations: Currently all members of the editorial board work in the United States,28 and articles are written in American English.29 However, given that Lead Pipe is an internationally recognized, well-respected, yet informal journal that was previously a popular peer-reviewed blog, a more global readership may be assumed.

The publication style guide requests that authors “. . . incorporate a global perspective in the context and arguments of articles (e.g., by considering what the broad international profession should do, not just what the American Library Association or U.S.-based librarians should do). It is acceptable for an article’s focus to be on one geographic region, but this should be made clear in the article, and avoid phrases like “across the country” without mentioning which country.”30

Reader characteristics: Editors take pride in having diverse skills and interests, and bring all of that knowledge and to the website, making it an interesting site to read even by those outside the profession. Lead Pipe is directed towards people involved in libraries in any capacity, from librarians to support staff and community members.31

Knowledge of LIS subject matter: Strong32

Conclusion: Analysis of reader characteristics and their potential impact on authors

The journal is one of the longer standing open source, peer edited and reviewed LIS sites, dating back to 2008. It is read and referenced by librarians internationally, and provides good information and topics of conversation for librarians and those interested in the LIS community. It is an informally written site but still presents scholarly articles along with editorials and opinion pieces, and would be a good platform for LIS students who wish to network and share ideas and concerns through writing articles for a community of peers.

Per editor Brett Bonfield: “We think of ourselves as a journal and we publish “articles,” not posts, and those articles are indexed by EBSCO for its library database products. We’re not aggressive about it or anything–we were delighted by the Salem Press blog award, for instance–but it’s a distinction that has meaning for us. We love a lot of LIS blogs and we love a lot of LIS journals, we just think we have a bit more in common with the journals than the blogs.”33

Last updated: May 3, 2017


References

Show 33 footnotes

  1.  In the Library with the Lead Pipe, Ulrichsweb Global Serials Directory, accessed April 11, 2018, http://ulrichsweb.serialssolutions.com.libaccess.sjlibrary.org/title/1523475745273/672658
  2. “About,” In the Library with the Lead Pipe, accessed May 3, 2017 http://www.inthelibrarywiththeleadpipe.org/about/
  3. “About,” In the Library with the Lead Pipe, accessed May 3, 2017 http://www.inthelibrarywiththeleadpipe.org/about/
  4. B. Bonfield, personal communication, March 17, 2013
  5. In the Library with the Lead Pipe, Ulrichsweb Global Serials Directory, accessed May 3, 2017,  http://ulrichsweb.serialssolutions.com.libaccess.sjlibrary.org/title/1405699974688/672658
  6. In the Library with the Lead Pipe, Ulrichsweb Global Serials Directory, accessed May 3, 2017, http://ulrichsweb.serialssolutions.com.libaccess.sjlibrary.org/title/1405699974688/672658
  7. “Lead Pipe Publication Process,” In the Library with the Lead Pipe, accessed May 3, 2017 http://www.inthelibrarywiththeleadpipe.org/submission-guidelines/lead-pipe-publication-process/
  8.  In the Library with the Lead Pipe, Ulrichsweb Global Serials Directory, accessed May 3, 2017, http://ulrichsweb.serialssolutions.com.libaccess.sjlibrary.org/title/1405699974688/672658
  9.  In the Library with the Lead Pipe, Ulrichsweb Global Serials Directory, accessed May 3, 2017, http://ulrichsweb.serialssolutions.com.libaccess.sjlibrary.org/title/1405699974688/672658
  10. “About,” In the Library with the Lead Pipe, accessed May 3, 2017 http://www.inthelibrarywiththeleadpipe.org/about/
  11. “Archives,” In the Library with the Lead Pipe, accessed May 3, 2017, http://www.inthelibrarywiththeleadpipe.org/archives/
  12. “Archives,” In the Library with the Lead Pipe, accessed May 3, 2017, http://www.inthelibrarywiththeleadpipe.org/about/
  13. “About,” In the Library with the Lead Pipe, accessed May 3, 2017, http://www.inthelibrarywiththeleadpipe.org/about/
  14. “Submission Guidelines,” In the Library with the Lead Pipe, accessed May 3, 2017, http://www.inthelibrarywiththeleadpipe.org/submission-guidelines/
  15. “Submission Guidelines,” In the Library with the Lead Pipe, accessed May 3, 2017, http://www.inthelibrarywiththeleadpipe.org/submission-guidelines/
  16. “Submission Guidelines,” In the Library with the Lead Pipe, accessed May 3, 2017, http://www.inthelibrarywiththeleadpipe.org/submission-guidelines/
  17. Lead Pipe Publication Process,” In the Library with the Lead Pipe, accessed May 3, 2017, http://www.inthelibrarywiththeleadpipe.org/submission-guidelines/lead-pipe-publication-process/
  18. B. Bonfield, personal communication, March 17, 2013
  19. Lead Pipe Publication Process,” In the Library with the Lead Pipe, accessed May 3, 2017, http://www.inthelibrarywiththeleadpipe.org/submission-guidelines/lead-pipe-publication-process/
  20. “About,” In the Library with the Lead Pipe, accessed May 3, 2017, http://www.inthelibrarywiththeleadpipe.org/about/
  21. “Style Guide,” In the Library with the Lead Pipe, accessed May 3, 2017, http://www.inthelibrarywiththeleadpipe.org/submission-guidelines/style-guide/
  22. In the Library with the Lead Pipe. (2014). Archives. Retrieved from http://www.inthelibrarywiththeleadpipe.org/archives/
  23. Ellie Collier, “And the Survey Says . . .,” In the Library with the Lead Pipe, September 5, 2012, accessed May 3, 2017, http://www.inthelibrarywiththeleadpipe.org/2012/survey-says/
  24. “Awards and Good Words,” In the Library with the Lead Pipe, accessed May 3, 2017,  http://www.inthelibrarywiththeleadpipe.org/awards-good-words/
  25. “About,” In the Library with the Lead Pipe, accessed May 3, 2017, http://www.inthelibrarywiththeleadpipe.org/about/
  26. “About,” In the Library with the Lead Pipe, accessed May 3, 2017, http://www.inthelibrarywiththeleadpipe.org/about/
  27. “In the Library with the Lead Pipe,” Wikipedia, June 6, 2016, accessed May 3, 2017, http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/In_the_Library_with_the_Lead_Pipe
  28. “Editorial Board,” In the Library with the Lead Pipe, accessed May 3, 2017,  http://www.inthelibrarywiththeleadpipe.org/about/editorial-board/
  29. In the Library with the Lead Pipe, Ulrichsweb Global Serials Directory, accessed May 3, 2017, http://ulrichsweb.serialssolutions.com.libaccess.sjlibrary.org/title/1405699974688/672658
  30. “Style Guide,” In the Library with the Lead Pipe, accessed May 3, 2017, http://www.inthelibrarywiththeleadpipe.org/submission-guidelines/style-guide/
  31. “Style Guide,” In the Library with the Lead Pipe, accessed May 3, 2017, http://www.inthelibrarywiththeleadpipe.org/about/
  32. “About,” In the Library with the Lead Pipe, accessed May 3, 2017, http://www.inthelibrarywiththeleadpipe.org/about/
  33. B. Bonfield, personal communication, March 17, 2013
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