- News and Notes
2015 Mid-winter Directors Meeting
Stuart Curran, President of the Association, called the meeting of January 23, 2015, to order at 11:30 a.m. at the New York Penn Club in New York City. In attendance and constituting a quorum were William T. Buice III, Elizabeth Dolan, Doucet Devin Fischer, Neil Fraistat, Robert A. Hartley, Sonia Hofkosh, Anthony D. Knerr, Alice J. Levine, Leslie Morris, Grant Scott, Susan J. Wolf-son, and Sarah M. Zimmerman. Absent with excuse were George Krupp, Marsha Manns, Jeanne Moskal, and David Stam.
The meeting opened with the review and approval of the minutes of the 2014 Annual Directors' Meeting and the 2014 Annual Members' Meeting, and continued with the regular reports.
(Robert Hartley) The Treasurer reported that the membership numbers were as expected for January; while institutional memberships are lower, it's because of Project MUSE, and we received $3,600 in compensation for those cancellations. We lost about 68 subscribers whose identities were confirmed and 28 whose identities were unidentified. Project MUSE agreed to compensate for all. This practice of compensation lasts for three years. We are also receiving royalties, but at the moment they are small.
2014 ended with a gain in individual memberships, a fortuitous trend which has recurred for the past few years because of the membership drive (with our brochures), the institution of PayPal, and the launching of the new website.
The Treasurer noted that because we raised subscription rates, revenue might rise, even though institutional memberships are down. We won't know, he explained, until May 2015. Discussion followed. When a Director asked whether the trend line would be consistent, the Treasurer answered that we do not yet know what it will look like.
A Director suggested that three years is enough time for cancellations for those who get the Keats-Shelley Journal from somewhere else. He added that we might still have more cancellations because institutions are cutting back in general. [End Page 7]
Another Director observed that individuals must be joining for reasons other than the Journal; she noted that individual memberships seem not to have been impacted by Project MUSE. Others pointed out that non-U.S. members have grown because of PayPal, and that our profile has also become more international.
A Director asked whether a Twitter presence would make a difference. Another Director noted that the upcoming bicentennials would provide an opportunity, and yet another suggested that a modest stipend to graduate students (perhaps $250) who would be responsible for social media might work. It was noted that the Blake Archive has its own social media up and running, so we could use them as a model.
(Robert Hartley) The Treasurer added to his report on membership that the Association's finances remain sound, and he provided and explained the numbers. A motion was made to accept the Treasurer's reports; it was seconded and received unanimous support.
(Stuart Curran) The President began his report with an announcement of the upcoming May 2015 conference sponsored by the Keats Foundation, to be held at Guy's Hospital. He went on to note that we have been dotting the planet with our brochures, adding that we should have enough left over for the Guy's Hospital conference. The brochures were also shared with the Keats House in London, at the MLA meeting in Vancouver, and with the organizers of the NASSR conference in Japan. It was noted that our website had had 115 unique visitors from Japan.
The President reminded the Board that we had decided against hosting another symposium in New York City in May 2015.
He went on to say that at the MLA convention there had been a meeting with Anne Ray, project coordinator with JSTOR, to discuss the possibility of offering access to materials that are not easily available, including out-of-print books. It was suggested that the Keats-Shelley subject area would be good for this kind of experimentation. JSTOR would want a committee for suggestions for how to expand, and we might offer honoraria for serving...