On July 26, 2007, Ithaka released "University Publishing In A Digital Age." The report has been met with great interest by the academic community and has already engendered a great deal of lively discussion.

Coincidentally, that same week, the Institute For the Future of the Book released CommentPress, an online textual annotation tool with great promise for promoting scholarly discussion and collaboration.

At the Scholarly Publishing Office of the University of Michigan Library we have watched both of these developments with keen interest. Our work as online scholarly publishers, our role as publisher of the Journal of Electronic Publishing and our close affiliation with the University of Michigan Press through our joint initiative, digitalculturebooks, directs us to paying close attention to both the conditions and tools of scholarly publishing.

The happy simultaneity of the release of the Ithaka Report and CommentPress prompted us to view the report as ideal material with which to experiment with CommentPress. With the gracious cooperation of the authors of the report, we have created a version of "University Publishing In A Digital Age" which invites public commentary and which we hope will serve as a basis for further discussions in our community.

In the words of the authors, "this paper argues that a renewed commitment to publishing in its broadest sense can enable universities to more fully realize the potential global impact of their academic programs, enhance the reputations of their institutions, maintain a strong voice in determining what constitutes important scholarship, and in some cases reduce costs." We welcome you to engage in that argument in this space.

For more information, please contact spo-help AT umich DOT edu.