Archive for June, 2005

The Supremes Landmark Ruling on MGM vs. Grokster

Posted in Copyright, Digital Culture, Digital Media on June 28th, 2005

The Supreme Court has ruled against Grokster. See "Supreme Court Rules against File Swapping" and "Court: File-Sharing Services May Be Sued" for details. For background information, see "File-Swap Fallout in Supreme Court Ruling" and the EFF’s MGM v. Grokster page. For in-depth discussion of the underlying issues, see Darknet: Hollywood’s War Against the Digital Generation and Sonic Boom listed at "Digital Works Want to Be Free ."

The key quote in the ruling is:

For the same reasons that Sony took the staple-article doctrine of patent law as a model for its copyright safeharbor rule, the inducement rule, too, is a sensible one for copyright. We adopt it here, holding that one who distributes a device with the object of promoting its use to infringe copyright, as shown by clear expression or other affirmative steps taken to foster infringement, is liable for the resulting acts of infringement by third parties. We are, of course, mindful of the need to keep from trenching on regular commerce or discouraging the development of technologies with lawful and unlawful potential. Accordingly, just as Sony did not find intentional inducement despite the knowledge of the VCR manufacturer that its device could be used to infringe, 464 U. S., at 439, n. 19, mere knowledge of infringing potential or of actual infringing uses would not be enough here to subject a distributor to liability. Nor would ordinary acts incident to product distribution, such as offering customers technical support or product updates, support liability in themselves. The inducement rule, instead, premises liability on purposeful, culpable expression and conduct, and thus does nothing to compromise legitimate commerce or discourage innovation having a lawful promise.

The EFF provides other key quotes.

Here’s an interesting take on the ruling: "File-Sharing Decision Hardly Apocalyptic".

ARL issued a statement for the Library Copyright Alliance that said:

The Library Copyright Alliance (LCA)­a group composed of the American Association of Law Libraries, American Library Association, Association of Research Libraries, Medical Library Association, and Special Libraries Association ­welcomes this balanced decision that supports the interests of libraries while addressing issues of widespread copyright infringement. By focusing on conduct that induces infringement, rather than on the distribution of technology, the decision ensures the continued availability of new and evolving digital technologies to libraries and their patrons.

The Center for Democracy and Technology’s press release said:

The court has worked to craft careful balance that allows copyright owners to pursue bad actors, but still protect the rights of technology makers. We hope this decision will preserve the climate of innovation that fostered the development of everything from the iPod to the Internet itself.

The EFF was less sanguine in their press release:

This decision relies on a new theory of copyright liability that measures whether manufacturers created their wares with the “intent” of inducing consumers to infringe. It means that inventors and entrepreneurs will not only bear the costs of bringing new products to market, but also the costs of lawsuits if consumers start using their products for illegal purposes.

And, of course, many bloggers weighed in as seen in Eric Goldman’s roundup, the lively discussion on SCOTUSblog, and the tsunami of comments on Slashdot.

According to "Congress Applauds File-Sharing Ruling" Congress is unlikely to take any immediate action as a result of the ruling.

Robert Summer, former head of the Recording Industry Association of America and former president of Sony Music International, said of the music industry reaction to the verdict: "The response across the board was one of elation."

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    Open Access News Update

    Posted in Announcements, Open Access on June 28th, 2005

    From June 24, 2005 to June 30, 2005, Open Access News was down, and I posted Peter Suber’s e-mail updates here. OAN is now up, and Peter has updated it with the missing postings. My updates have been deleted from this posting.

    Links to the OAN messages in question are below.

    June 30 posting (2 items)

    June 30 posting (7 items)

    June 29 posting (1 item)

    June 29 posting (5 items)

    June 28 posting (4 items)

    June 28 posting (2 items)

    June 27 posting (2 items)

    June 27 posting (6 items)

    June 26 posting (5 items)

    June 25 posting (11 items)

    June 24 posting (2 items)

    June 24 posting (7 items)

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      Key Open Access Concepts

      Posted in Announcements, Open Access, Scholarly Communication on June 22nd, 2005

      An excerpt from the Open Access Bibliography: Liberating Scholarly Literature with E-Prints and Open Access Journals (OAB) that provides a brief overview of OA concepts is now available in HTML-tagged format. Additional links have been added, and old links checked and updated. As part of the OAB, it is under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial License.
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        Navigating the Library Blogosphere

        Posted in Emerging Technologies, Libraries, Webliographies on June 20th, 2005

        Needless to say, there has been rapid growth in blogging by librarians over the last few years, and library blogosphere has become more varied and complex. Here are some directories of library web logs to help you navigate the library blogosphere:

        Want more information about library web logs? Try Susan Herzog’s BlogBib.

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          Scholarly Electronic Publishing Weblog Update (6/20/05)

          Posted in Announcements on June 20th, 2005

          The biweekly update of the Scholarly Electronic Publishing Weblog (SEPW) is now available, which provides brief information on 20+ new journal issues and other resources. Especially interesting are: A Companion to Digital Humanities, "EFF: Legal Guide for Bloggers," an issue of the Journal of Library Administration on licensing, Online Submission and Peer Review Systems, "Open Access Self-Archiving: An Author Study," and "Using Dublin Core."

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            The Counting Game

            Posted in ARL Libraries, Libraries on June 14th, 2005

            Let’s say you run a research library and you have JSTOR. You are convinced that JSTOR is a safe, permanent electronic archive that fully substitutes for the included print journal volumes. It makes sense to take a second look at those print volumes. It’s a large number of volumes, and space (as always) is tight. What to do? You could withdraw them, you could put them in remote storage, or you could do nothing.

            A question that might come to mind is: What impact will withdrawing these volumes have on my volume count? And, if your library is in ARL, a second question might be: what impact would withdrawing these volumes have on my ARL ranking?

            Of course, if you are at one of the very top-tier libraries, this might be the proverbial drop in the bucket. If not, it might have an effect, possibly a big effect if you are at the bottom of the rankings.

            Another interesting twist comes when the same questions come to bear on cooperative print archives. The idea is that a group of libraries band together and put one archival copy of book or journal volumes in a collective print repository, freeing up a considerable amount of collective space. Perhaps it’s in response to a shift to electronic access, or perhaps it’s based on low usage. In either case, one archival copy is stored safe and sound for that someday when it might be needed.

            Makes sense—until you play the counting game.

            The problem with the counting game in the emerging electronic era is figuring out how to count electronic "holdings" so that they have the same weight as print holdings. This is make especially tricky by the fact that libraries do not own licensed electronic resources, only "rent" them. What’s held one year may not be held the next due to a wide variety of factors, making counting a bit more difficult than just adding this year’s new purchases to last year’s volume counts.

            Like it or not, research libraries are unlikely to stop playing the counting game. ARL’s E-Metrics project is one attempt to define meaningful new measures. In the long run, the counting game will have new rules, because it appears that the substitution of electronic information for print information is gaining momentum, driven by a variety of budgetary and other factors.

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              Version 58, Scholarly Electronic Publishing Bibliography

              Posted in Bibliographies, Digital Scholarship Publications, Scholarly Communication on June 10th, 2005

              Version 58 of the Scholarly Electronic Publishing Bibliography
              is now available. This selective bibliography presents over
              2,420 articles, books, and other printed and electronic sources
              that are useful in understanding scholarly electronic publishing
              efforts on the Internet.



              The Open Access Bibliography: Liberating Scholarly
              Literature with E-Prints and Open Access Journals
              , by the
              same author, provides much more in-depth coverage of the
              open access movement and related topics (e.g., disciplinary
              archives, e-prints, institutional repositories, open access
              journals, and the Open Archives Initiative) than
              SEPB does.


              Changes in This Version

              The bibliography has the following sections (revised sections are
              marked with an asterisk):

              Table of Contents

              1 Economic Issues*
              2 Electronic Books and Texts
              2.1 Case Studies and History*
              2.2 General Works*
              2.3 Library Issues*
              3 Electronic Serials
              3.1 Case Studies and History*
              3.2 Critiques
              3.3 Electronic Distribution of Printed Journals
              3.4 General Works
              3.5 Library Issues*
              3.6 Research*
              4 General Works*
              5 Legal Issues
              5.1 Intellectual Property Rights*
              5.2 License Agreements
              5.3 Other Legal Issues
              6 Library Issues
              6.1 Cataloging, Identifiers, Linking, and Metadata*
              6.2 Digital Libraries*
              6.3 General Works*
              6.4 Information Integrity and Preservation*
              7 New Publishing Models*
              8 Publisher Issues*
              8.1 Digital Rights Management*
              9 Repositories, E-Prints, and OAI*
              Appendix A. Related Bibliographies
              Appendix B. About the Author*

              Scholarly Electronic Publishing Resources includes
              the following sections:

              Cataloging, Identifiers, Linking, and Metadata
              Digital Libraries*
              Electronic Books and Texts*
              Electronic Serials*
              General Electronic Publishing*
              Repositories, E-Prints, and OAI*
              SGML and Related Standards

              Further Information about SEPB

              The HTML version of SEPB is designed for interactive use. Each
              major section is a separate file. There are links to sources
              that are freely available on the Internet. It can be can be
              searched using Boolean operators.

              The HTML document includes three sections not found in
              the Acrobat file:

              (1) Scholarly Electronic Publishing Weblog (biweekly list of
              new resources; also available by mailing list—see second


              (2) Scholarly Electronic Publishing Resources (directory of
              over 270 related Web sites)


              (3) Archive (prior versions of the bibliography)


              The Acrobat file is designed for printing. The printed
              bibliography is about 200 pages long. The Acrobat file is
              over 470 KB.

              Related Article

              An article about the bibliography has been published
              in The Journal of Electronic Publishing:


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                Something Wiki This Way Comes

                Posted in Emerging Technologies, Webliographies on June 7th, 2005

                Wikis are catching on in the library world. What’s a Wiki? "The simplest online database that could possibly work." (Quote from: "Making the Case for a Wiki.")

                Here’s a few examples of how Wikis are being used:

                If you want to dig in and learn more about Wikis, try Gerry McKiernan’s WikiBibliography.

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                  Digital Scholarship

                  Copyright © 2005-2015 by Charles W. Bailey, Jr.

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