Archive for the 'Open Access' Category

Digital Video: Open Science: Good For Research, Good For Researchers? at Columbia

Posted in Cyberinfrastructure/E-Science, Open Access on March 19th, 2009

A digital video of the panel presentation: "Open Science: Good for Research, Good for Researchers?" at Columbia University is now available.

Here's the description from the Web page:

Open science refers to information-sharing among researchers and encompasses a number of initiatives to remove access barriers to data and published papers, and to use digital technology to more efficiently disseminate research results. Advocates for this approach argue that openly sharing information among researchers is fundamental to good science, speeds the progress of research, and increases recognition of researchers. Panelists: Jean-Claude Bradley, Associate Professor of Chemistry and Coordinator of E-Learning for the School of Arts and Sciences at Drexel University; Barry Canton, founder of Gingko BioWorks and the OpenWetWare wiki, an online community of life science researchers committed to open science that has over 5,300 users; Bora Zivkovic, Online Discussion Expert for the Public Library of Science (PLoS) and author of "A Blog Around the Clock."

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    MIT Open Access Policy Approved

    Posted in Open Access, Self-Archiving on March 18th, 2009

    The MIT Faculty Open-Access Policy was approved unanimously by the faculty today. It is effective immediately.

    Here's an excerpt:

    The Faculty of the Massachusetts Institute of Technology is committed to disseminating the fruits of its research and scholarship as widely as possible. In keeping with that commitment, the Faculty adopts the following policy: Each Faculty member grants to the Massachusetts Institute of Technology nonexclusive permission to make available his or her scholarly articles and to exercise the copyright in those articles for the purpose of open dissemination. In legal terms, each Faculty member grants to MIT a nonexclusive, irrevocable, paid-up, worldwide license to exercise any and all rights under copyright relating to each of his or her scholarly articles, in any medium, provided that the articles are not sold for a profit, and to authorize others to do the same. The policy will apply to all scholarly articles written while the person is a member of the Faculty except for any articles completed before the adoption of this policy and any articles for which the Faculty member entered into an incompatible licensing or assignment agreement before the adoption of this policy. The Provost or Provost's designate will waive application of the policy for a particular article upon written notification by the author, who informs MIT of the reason.

    To assist the Institute in distributing the scholarly articles, as of the date of publication, each Faculty member will make available an electronic copy of his or her final version of the article at no charge to a designated representative of the Provost's Office in appropriate formats (such as PDF) specified by the Provost's Office.

    The Provost's Office will make the scholarly article available to the public in an open- access repository. The Office of the Provost, in consultation with the Faculty Committee on the Library System will be responsible for interpreting this policy, resolving disputes concerning its interpretation and application, and recommending changes to the Faculty.

    Read more about it at "MIT Adopts a University-wide OA Mandate."

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      Harvard Kennedy School of Government Adopts Open Access Policy

      Posted in Open Access, Self-Archiving on March 17th, 2009

      The Harvard Kennedy School of Government has adopted an open access policy. Previously, the Harvard Faculty of Arts and Sciences and the Harvard Law School have adopted open access policies. (Thanks to Stevan Harnad.)

      Here's an excerpt:

      The Faculty of the Harvard Kennedy School of Government is committed to disseminating the fruits of its research and scholarship as widely as possible. In keeping with that commitment, the Faculty adopts the following policy: Each Faculty member grants to the President and Fellows of Harvard College permission to make available his or her scholarly articles and to exercise the copyright in those articles. More specifically, each Faculty member grants to the President and Fellows a nonexclusive, irrevocable, worldwide license to exercise any and all rights under copyright relating to each of his or her scholarly articles, in any medium, and to authorize others to do the same, provided that the articles are not sold for a profit. The policy will apply to all scholarly articles authored or co-authored while the person is a member of the Faculty except for any articles completed before the adoption of this policy and any articles for which the Faculty member entered into an incompatible licensing or assignment agreement before the adoption of this policy. The Dean or the Dean's designate will waive application of the license for a particular article upon express direction by a Faculty member.

      Each Faculty member will provide an electronic copy of the author's final version of each article at no charge to the appropriate representative of the Provost's Office in an appropriate format (such as PDF) specified by the Provost's Office no later than the date of its publication. The Provost's Office may make the article available to the public in an open-access repository.

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        “Scientific Journal Publishing: Yearly Volume and Open Access Availability”

        Posted in Open Access, Publishing, Scholarly Journals, Self-Archiving on March 16th, 2009

        Bo-Christer Björk, Annikki Roos and Mari Lauri have published "Scientific Journal Publishing: Yearly Volume and Open Access Availability" in the latest issue of Information Research.

        Here's an excerpt from the abstract:

        Results. We estimate that in 2006 the total number of articles published was approximately 1,350,000. Of this number 4.6% became immediately openly available and an additional 3.5% after an embargo period of, typically, one year. Furthermore, usable copies of 11.3% could be found in subject-specific or institutional repositories or on the home pages of the authors.

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          New Report Says Less Than 50% of Publishers Permit Self-Archiving in Disciplinary Archives

          Posted in Author Rights, Disciplinary Archives, Open Access, Publishing, Self-Archiving on March 16th, 2009

          A new report from the Publishing Research Consortium, Journal Authors' Rights: Perception and Reality, says that less than 10% of publishers permit self-archiving of the publisher PDF file in any repository and less than 50% permit deposit of the submitted and the accepted article version in a disciplinary archive.

          Here's an excerpt:

          However, when it comes to self-archiving, although 80% or more allow self- archiving to a personal or departmental website, over 60% to an institutional repository, and over 40% to a subject repository, in most cases this is only permitted for the submitted and/or accepted version; use of the final, published version for self-archiving is very much more restricted.

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            Presentations from the 9th International Bielefeld Conference

            Posted in Cyberinfrastructure/E-Science, Open Access, Scholarly Communication on March 12th, 2009

            Presentations from the 9th International Bielefeld Conference are now available.

            Here's a few quick selections:

            • Communicating the Results of Research: How Much Does It Cost, and Who Pays?, Michael Jubb (slides) (audio)
            • IR Also Means Institutional Responsibility, Leo Waaijers (slides) (audio)
            • University Investment in the Library: What's the Return?, Carol Tenopir (slides) (audio)
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              Senate Spending Bill Includes NIH Open Access Provision

              Posted in Copyright, Digital Copyright Wars, Open Access, Publishing, Scholarly Journals, Self-Archiving on March 10th, 2009

              The Senate spending bill, which has been reported by the Washington Post and others as having passed, includes an NIH open access provision.

              Here's an excerpt from "In 2009 Appropriations Bill, NIH Public Access Mandate Would Become Permanent":

              In the section funding the NIH, section 217, pertaining to public access, reads:

              "The Director of the National Institutes of Health shall require in the current fiscal year and thereafter [emphasis added] that all investigators funded by the NIH submit or have submitted for them to the National Library of Medicine's PubMed Central an electronic version their final, peer-reviewed manuscripts upon acceptance for publication, to be made publicly available no later than 12 months after the official date of publication: provided, That the NIH shall implement the public access policy in a manner consistent with copyright law."

              In his "Congress Makes NIH Policy Permanent (but for Conyers Bill) post," Peter Suber points out that because of the Fair Copyright in Research Works Act the NIH Public Access policy is still in danger.

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                Lawrence Lessig Replies to Rep. John Conyers about the Fair Copyright in Research Works Act

                Posted in Copyright, Digital Copyright Wars, Legislation and Government Regulation, Open Access, Publishing, Scholarly Journals, Self-Archiving on March 10th, 2009

                Lawrence Lessig has replied to Rep. John Conyers' "A Reply to Larry Lessig," which was written in response to "Is John Conyers Shilling for Special Interests?" by Lawrence Lessig and Michael Eisen.

                Here's an excerpt:

                Supporting citizens' funding of the nation's elections—as Mr. Conyers has—is an important first step. That one change, I believe, would do more than any other to restore trustworthiness in Congress.

                But that's not all you could do, Mr. Conyers. You have it within your power to remove any doubt about the reasons you have for sponsoring the legislation you sponsor: Stop accepting contributions from the interests your committee regulates. This was the principle of at least some committee chairmen in the past. It is practically unheard of today. But you could set an important example for others, and for America, about how an uncorrupted system of government might work. And you could do so without any risk to your own position—because the product of your forty years of extraordinary work for the citizens of Michigan means that they'll return you to office whether or not you spend one dime on a reelection. Indeed, if you did this, I'd promise to come to Michigan and hand out leaflets for your campaign.

                Until you do this, Mr. Conyers, don't lecture me about "crossing a line." For I intend to cross this line as often as I can, the outrage and scorn of Members of Congress notwithstanding. This is no time to play nice. And yours is just the first in a series of many such stories to follow—targeting Republicans as well as Democrats, people who we agree with on substance as well as those we don't, always focusing on bad bills that make sense only if you follow the money.

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                  New York Action Alert: Rep. Carolyn Maloney Sponsors Fair Copyright in Research Works Act

                  Posted in Copyright, Digital Copyright Wars, Legislation and Government Regulation, Open Access, Publishing on March 9th, 2009

                  Rep. Carolyn B. Maloney (D-NY) has become the first sponsor of the Fair Copyright in Research Works Act who is not a member of the House Judiciary Committee.

                  If you are in her district and oppose the bill, you can contact her to express your opposition in the following ways:

                  • DC Office: Phone: (202) 225-7944; Fax: (202) 225-4709
                  • New York Office: Phone: (212) 860-0606, Fax: (212) 860-0704
                  • Web Form: The Hill form; Maloney's form

                  The ALA call to action and the Alliance for Taxpayer Access call to action have example text and talking points that you can use. (Note that the ALA call Web form cannot be used to contact Maloney.)

                  Peter Suber offers this advice:

                  As usual, you will be more persuasive if you can explain why the NIH policy matters to you, your work, or your organization. Be specific and be personal. Speak for yourself, but if you can, get your institution to send a letter as well. Save your message; you may need to adapt and reuse it later. And please spread the word to your NY colleagues.

                  For further information about the Fair Copyright in Research Works Act, see Suber's article "Re-introduction of the Bill to Kill the NIH Policy" and his post "Aiming Criticism at the Right Target."

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                    Michael Eisen Replies to Rep. John Conyers about the Fair Copyright in Research Works Act

                    Posted in Copyright, Digital Copyright Wars, Open Access, Publishing, Scholarly Journals, Self-Archiving on March 8th, 2009

                    Michael Eisen has replied to Rep. John Conyers' "A Reply to Larry Lessig," which was written in response to "Is John Conyers Shilling for Special Interests?" by Lawrence Lessig and Michael Eisen. (Thanks to Open Access News.)

                    Here's an excerpt:

                    Unfortunately, Representative Conyers actions do not reflect his words. This bill was introduced in the last Congress. The Judiciary Committee then held hearings on the bill, in which even the publishers' own witnesses pointed out flaws in its logic and approach. In particular, a previous Registrar of Copyrights, clearly sympathetic to the publishers' cause, acknowledged that the NIH Policy was in perfect accord with US copyright law and practice. If Conyers were so interested in dealing with a complex issue in a fair and reasonable way, why then did he completely ignore the results of this hearing and reintroduce the exact same bill—one that clearly reflects the opinions of only one side in this debate?

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                      Peter Suber Replies to Rep. John Conyers about the Fair Copyright in Research Works Act

                      Posted in Copyright, Digital Copyright Wars, Open Access, Publishing, Scholarly Journals, Self-Archiving on March 7th, 2009

                      Peter Suber has replied to Rep. John Conyers' "A Reply to Larry Lessig," which was written in response to "Is John Conyers Shilling for Special Interests?" by Lawrence Lessig and Michael Eisen.

                      Here's an excerpt:

                      I thank Rep. Conyers for making a public defense of his bill in a forum which offers the public a chance to respond.  I also respect his record on other issues, including civil rights and bankruptcy, and his current efforts to compel the testimony of Karl Rove and Harriet Miers. On research publications, however, he's backing the wrong horse, and his arguments for siding with publishers against scientists and taxpayers are not strong.

                      (1) Rep. Conyers insists that the House Judiciary Committee should have been consulted on the original proposal for an open-access policy at the NIH. However, William Patry, former copyright counsel to the House Judiciary Committee (and now chief copyright counsel at Google), believes that "the claim that the NIH policy raises copyright issues is absurd," and that the Judiciary Committee did not need to be in the loop.  I understand that the House Rules Committee came to a similar decision when formally asked. . . .

                      Clearly Rep. Conyers disagrees with these views. But they should suffice to show that bypassing the Judiciary Committee was not itself a corrupt maneuver.

                      If it's important to revisit the question, I hope Rep. Conyers can do it without backing a bill from a special interest lobby that would reduce taxpayer access to taxpayer-funded research. A turf war is not a good excuse for bad policy. On the merits, see points 2 and 3 below.

                      For more independent views that the NIH policy does not raise copyright issues, see the open letter to the Judiciary Committee from 46 lawyers and law professors specializing in copyright.

                      (2) Rep. Conyers accepts the publisher argument that the NIH policy will defund peer review by causing journal cancellations. The short answer to that objection is that (a) much higher levels of open-access archiving, of the kind the NIH now requires, have not caused journal cancellations in physics, the one field in which we already have evidence; (b) subscription-based journals are not the only peer-reviewed journals; and (c) if the NIH policy does eventually cause journal cancellations, then libraries would experience huge savings which they could redirect to peer-reviewed OA journals, whose business models do not bet against the internet, public access, or the NIH policy.

                      For a detailed analysis of the objection that government-mandated open access archiving will undermine peer review, and a point-by-point rebuttal, see my article in the SPARC Open Access Newsletter from September 2007.

                      (3) Rep. Conyers writes that the NIH policy "reverses a long-standing and highly successful copyright policy for federally-funded work and sets a precedent that will have significant negative consequences for scientific research." It's true that the policy reverses a long-standing copyright policy.  But the previous policy was unsuccessful and perverse, and had the effect of steering publicly-funded research into journals accessible only to subscribers, and whose subscription prices have been rising faster than inflation for three decades. Both houses of Congress and the President agreed to reverse that policy in order to allow the NIH to provide free online access to the authors' peer-reviewed manuscripts (not the published editions) 12 months after publication (not immediately). This was good for researchers, good for physicians and other medical practitioners, good for patients and their families, and good for taxpayers. It was necessary to make NIH research accessible to everyone who could use it and necessary to increase the return on our large national investment in research. It was necessary from simple fairness, to give taxpayers—professional researchers and lay readers alike—access to the research they funded.

                      On the "significant negative consequences for scientific research":  should we believe publishers who want to sell access to publicly-funded research, or the research community itself, as represented by 33 US Nobel laureates in science, the Association of American Universities, the Association of Research Libraries, and a host of patient advocacy groups?

                      For further information about the Fair Copyright in Research Works Act, see Suber's article "Re-introduction of the Bill to Kill the NIH policy" and his post "Aiming Criticism at the Right Target."

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                        Rep. John Conyers Replies to Lessig and Eisen about Fair Copyright in Research Works Act

                        Posted in Copyright, Digital Copyright Wars, Legislation and Government Regulation, Open Access, Self-Archiving on March 6th, 2009

                        Rep. John Conyers has replied to Lawrence Lessig and Michael Eisen's "Is John Conyers Shilling for Special Interests?" article about the Fair Copyright in Research Works Act.

                        Here's an excerpt:

                        The policy Professor Lessig supports, they [opponents] argue, would limit publishers' ability to charge for subscriptions since the same articles will soon be publicly available for free. If journals begin closing their doors or curtailing peer review, or foist peer review costs on academic authors (who are already pay from their limited budgets printing costs in some cases), the ultimate harm will be to open inquiry and scientific progress may be severe. And the journals most likely to be affected may be non-profit, scientific society based journals. Once again, a policy change slipped through the appropriations process in the dark of night may enhance open access to information, but it may have unintended consequences that are severe. This only emphasizes the need for proper consideration of these issues in open session.

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