Welcome and Review of Agenda
Katie called the February meeting of the ACB Board of Publications to order shortly after 9 p.m. Eastern time on the first Tuesday in February, 2022. The meeting was held on Zoom, and also streamed on ACB Media 6. Katie read the agenda, and there were no additions or requests to change the order of topics or reports.
Penny called the roll. Katie, Penny, Cheryl, Cachet, Zelda, Deb, Rick, Sharon, and Dan were present, as well as several guests.
Approval of January Minutes
The board voted unanimously to approve the minutes from our January meeting after a motion from Zelda and second from Cachet.
Public’s Point of View
No one from the public offered a comment or suggestion at this point in the meeting, although there was public participation in discussion later on during the meeting.
ACB Media Update
Rick provided an update on ACB Media. He reported that he has drafted a document describing a process for evaluating recorded (Community) content for streaming on ACB Media. The document is being reviewed internally right now, and Rick anticipates bringing it to the BOP for comments and review, next month.
Preparing for the virtual ACB Leadership conference is the priority for ACB Media right now. Realizing that he will need more physical space to handle all of the tasks associated with streaming the mid-year meetings, Rick has spoken to Kim about acquiring space at Perkins, as he did during the 2021 ACB convention. He is waiting for an answer from Perkins.
Another major priority for Rick is putting together a handbook for people who get involved with ACB Media. The old 32-page ACB Radio broadcaster agreement, which has been amended many times, will not suffice.
With respect to planning for the hybrid ACB Conference and Convention, Rick said that ACB Media has heard back from two respondents to their RFP. Both still appear to be too costly. He has spoken to a third vendor and is hopeful that the price quote from that vendor will be more affordable.
Recently, ACB Media streamed the Kansas convention, and the RSVA Sagebrush Conference is coming up. ACB Media has met with Florida about their hybrid convention which is scheduled to take place in early June.
Dan said that there is a need for the board to revisit policies regarding ACB Media’s streaming of affiliate conventions. That will be on the board’s agenda during their March 11 meeting. Rick pointed out that policies need to be developed regarding how committee meetings and affiliate and affiliate chapter fund-raising events are prioritized for streaming and handled as well. The director of development and the Resource Development Committee need to be included in the discussion, as well as the ACB Board who needs to develop policies related to obligations and prioritizations.
The reality is that, during the pandemic, ACB Media has actually made more money from the donations that affiliates have contributed as an expression of their appreciation for the work that ACB Media has done for them in streaming their conventions than they would have from the fee structure that – because of the pandemic – was never actually implemented in the first place.
Rick reported that schedules for Media 1 and Media 4 are now available on the ACB Media Calendar, all of the ACB events are listed on the calendar, and people will be able to access the calendar on ACB.org. Jeff is working on adding the schedule for Treasure Trove, as well, and discussions are underway exploring how to possibly add community events, which are more dynamic in nature.
Patti Cox asked if ACB Media can provide a training for members on exactly how to use the calendar, and Rick and Deb said that they will plan such an event soon.
Katie suggested that, once the training event has been provided, ACB Media can post it on Media 10 for members’ easy reference.
Terry Pacheco said she will be happy to host a Google Calendar training event on VisAbilities.
Dan asked if ACB Media has located a replacement for Zeno, which is so frustrating for users, but Rick and Deb said that they still have not found anything.
Zelda reported that she had received several bounces when she replied to emails requesting to be subscribed to the editors list. Rick responded that she should just send those bounces to him, and he will figure out what is happening. Rick and Deb agreed that they probably indicate that the original e-mail messages were spam.
Rick suggests that we begin asking people for their names when they send in a request to subscribe to an ACB Groups.IO list. There was general agreement that this is a good idea.
Rick is tentatively planning to do some Groups.io training for affiliates who request training.
Blog Process Document
Katie will be meeting with Jen, Kelly and Sharon to define the process that takes place when submissions come in, before she sends them to the BOP list for review and editing.
Katie had sent a document outlining the process BOP members have been following to handle blog submissions. Discussion followed regarding the process and any possible additions or alterations BOP members felt would improve it.
Discussion led to the following additional items:
Sharon will act as a “time keeper,” reminding BOP members, three days after an item has been submitted to the BOP list, that the blog needs attention.
We will implement a color code to identify submissions that are ready for publication (Green), need more work (Yellow), or need to be returned to a writer for revision (Red).
Cachet suggested that when BOP members determine that a rewrite is needed, they need to contact blog authors and explain the need for clarification of the writer’s point of view. That rewrite is the responsibility of the original writer, i.e., BOP members need to allow writers to express their points of view in their own words.
Paul Edwards, attending as a guest, suggested that, when we need to send something back to an author, we might identify the issue we think requires attention, rather than editing the author’s original wording, therefore honoring every author’s freedom of speech, i.e., not putting our words into the mouths of our writers.
Sharon will act as the final “clean-up” editor to repair formatting or spelling errors.
Penny will take the lead in February, and Zelda will act as second; Cachet will take the lead in March, and Zelda will act as second.
Katie will share revised blog guidelines on the BOP list, or Penny can add them to the minutes.
Large Print Guidelines Recommendations Update
Sharon reported that the March ACB Braille Forum is almost ready to go, and it includes an article that is printed in conformance with the large print guidelines that CCLVI submitted to the BOP in January. There are instructions for large print readers to contact Sharon regarding their reaction to the readability of the printed article.
Zelda plans to discuss the new guidelines with the editors’ group at their March 18 meeting. Zelda will contact Cindy and find out how to get on the agenda of the presidents’ meeting to discuss the revised large print guidelines as well.
The BOP will also have a slot during the March presidents’ meeting, and discussion of the revised guidelines can also be included in that presentation. In addition, we will include something in Dots and Dashes alerting people to the March Braille Forum article that is printed in conformance with revised large print guidelines.
Terry reported three issues which she felt needed more attention:
One regards when a document should be saddle-stitched rather than stapled or bound in another way.
Another concerns the weight of the paper. Terry said that it is her experience that 20-pound paper can cause print to bleed through on the other side of a page, whereas 24-pound weight paper prevents this from happening.
Patti Cox responded to this point, saying that she has been using 20-pound paper consistently for years, and bleed-through has not been a problem.
Sharon said that the Braille Forum uses 50-pound weight paper.
Deb will look at the APH guidelines she acquired several years ago when the BOP first addressed the issue of large print guidelines and share their recommendation regarding paper weight and any other issues.
Terry’s third issue involved where to print foot or end notes – i.e., at the bottom of a page or at the end of an article.
Penny said that many readers of large print or braille would prefer to find a note at the bottom of a page, rather than at the end of an article.
Zelda said that, although CCLVI had voted to adopt the large print guidelines that the BOP now has under consideration, she did not think CCLVI would object to taking the changes that Terry suggests into further consideration.
ACB Braille Forum Report
Sharon submitted the following report to the BOP list in advance of the meeting:
Editor’s Report, February 2022
Issue type: hard-copy
Page count: 80
Braille distributed: 650
Braille returned: 4
Braille return rate: 0.6%
Braille received: 646
Large print distributed: 2,159
Large print returned: 8
Large print return rate: 0.4%
Large print received: 2,151
Cartridge distributed: TBA
Email distributed: 4,998
Spam reports: 0
Return rate: 1.98%
Email received: 4,899
Issue type: electronic
Page count: 96
Email distributed: 5,028
Issue type: hard-copy
Page count: 80
Braille to be distributed: 641
Cartridge to be distributed: TBA
Large print to be distributed: 2,145
Deadlines for the Next Issues
April 2022 (electronic): Multi-Cultural Affairs Committee, February 23rd
May 2022 (hard copy): theme TBA; deadline: March 25th
June 2022 (electronic): focuses on the convention; deadline: April 25th
July (hard copy): potluck - whatever articles I haven’t had space for yet; deadline May 23rd
August (electronic): IVIE; deadline June 24th
… … …
Right now I’m putting the finishing touches on the March Forum. I received an amazing variety of articles from ACB Women - from Rachel Schroeder’s Journey to Motherhood to Linda Porelle’s The Gifts of Mentorship, plus several others. It took some work, but it all fit nicely.
Another big project is the annual membership updates. I’m thankful that so many of our affiliates have gotten an early start. When I came in on Monday the 24th, there were over 120 updates waiting in my inbox - and they just keep on coming!
I continue to work on cleaning up and modernizing old issues of the Forum to current large print standards, and organizing them on our Sharepoint drive (at the moment, from the 1990s through today). I’m including Word, text, and BRF file formats in the Forum folders on Sharepoint. I have finished 2013 and am working on 2014. For some issues, I have the articles as separate Word or text files. Once I’ve gotten through the 2020s, I will start on 1990-1999, and work backward from there.
I updated the Job Connection in late January, and just sent Sande a huge new one - 128 pages - for February. This month, the job openings just kept on pouring in.
I continue to work with the archives committee and Kim Charlson on preserving and digitizing old recordings and documents from ACB events, such as conventions, board meetings, leadership seminars, legislative seminars and affiliate presidents’ meetings, etc. The committee will be meeting Wednesday afternoon.
I’ve also been working with the awards committee. The articles were in the January issue, and committee members have appeared on Paul Edwards’ Tuesday Topics and elsewhere, talking about the awards. There are a few more community calls to come. I’ve checked with National Braille Press regarding the plaques. Their “drop dead” date for receipt of plaque language is the end of April. I’m pulling together the list of Freeman-eligible Forum articles already.
The office is getting ready for the D.C. Leadership Conference next month. I’m sure there will be plenty of document preparation even though it is virtual this year.
Looking ahead, I’m starting to think about newspaper names for convention. If you’ve got any ideas, I’d like to hear them.
Sharon Lovering, Editor
American Council of the Blind
In response to a question from Cheryl, Sharon said that she will report on the cartridges during the month that follows her receipt of a cartridge bill.
Braille Forum Themes
IVIE will take responsibility for August.
Dan reported that the Audio Description Project would like to adopt a month, and the BOP agreed to ask them to take responsibility for September.
Katie said that the International Relations Committee would like to adopt a month as well, and she will reach out to Maria Kristic to ask her which month the committee prefers, May, October, November, or December.
Everyone on the call agreed that finding months to assign to affiliates and committees who want to adopt a month is a good problem to have.
Sharon had reported that the deadline for getting language into National Braille Press for the awards plaques is April 1.
The ACB Awards Committee and Katie, representing the BOP, will be presenting on the topic of awards on VisAbilities on Friday, February 5 and at the presidents’ meeting on February 9. Katie complimented Paul on the Tuesday Topics show from a couple weeks ago where ACB awards was the topic. She said the additional information that Paul and Kim were able to bring to the topic was especially informative. We may want to include this kind of more in-depth information in the awards article that we prepare for next January’s Braille Forum. Deb said that she has collected some of this information and can share it.
Terry reported that, when she looked on the ACB web site, the information regarding ACB awards was incomplete. Sharon said she would check on that the next day and make any corrections that are needed.
Anthony has invited Katie and Penny to present on Sunday Edition, and Katie invited anyone else on the BOP to join the discussion as well.
We agreed that the BOP will need to announce the candidates pages and call for candidates’ submissions in the April Braille Forum, then we will need to schedule a candidates’ forum in June. Dan said that Brian Charlson is planning to schedule the meeting of the Nominating Committee on June 23, 24, or 25.
Zelda reminded the BOP that the next Editors’ Meeting is scheduled for March 18, and Steve Dresser will be presenting on Duxbury. Katie will set up the Zoom invitation and Zelda will forward it to the editors’ and BOP.
The meeting adjourned at 11:24 p.m. Eastern. The next BOP meeting will take place on Tuesday, March 1, 2022.