Archive for the 'Open Access' Category

Peter Suber at Harvard on What Can Universities Do to Promote Open Access

Posted in Open Access, Scholarly Communication on March 28th, 2008

A digital video of open access advocate Peter Suber's presentation at the Harvard Law School's Berkman Center for Internet and Society on "What Can Universities Do to Promote Open Access?" is now available.

Stevan Harnad has commented on the talk in his "Peter Suber's Talk at Harvard's Berkman Center: 'What Can Universities Do to Promote Open Access?"' posting.

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    DSpace Version 1.5 Released

    Posted in Digital Repositories, DSpace, Institutional Repositories, Open Access on March 26th, 2008

    Version 1.5 of DSpace, which is a major upgrade, has been released.

    Here's an excerpt from the announcement:

    The DSpace community is pleased to announce the release of DSpace 1.5! This is an important release of DSpace with many new features, including a completely new theme-able Manakin user interface, SWORD integration, many new configurable options, and scalability improvements. . . .

    New Features:

    • Maven DSpace 1.5 introduces a new Maven-based build system. Maven is a software tool from Apache that allows developers to compile and distribute software projects. Maven also enables DSpace to be more modular by arranging the software into sub-components. In addition, it makes customizations easier by giving developers the tools to maintain customizations, and provides the ability to manage new features as DSpace continues its accelerating growth rate. . . .
    • Manakin Customize your repository look-and-feel with the new Manakin theme-able user interface. Manakin introduces a new modular framework, enabling an institution to customize their interface according to the specific needs of the particular repository, community, or collection. . . .
    • Light Network Interface Integrate DSpace with legacy or local systems that need to manage content in the repository through the new Light Network Interface. This interface provides a programmatic mechanism to manage content within the repository through a WebDAV or SOAP based protocol. . . .
    • SWORD Integrate with the new SWORD (Simple Web-service Offering Repository Deposit) protocol. Based upon the Atom Publishing Protocol, this interface allows for cross-repository deposit of new content. This protocol may enable future tools that will provide for 'one click' deposit. . . .
    • Browsing The browsing system has been completely re-implemented to provide improved scalability and configuration. The new browsing system enables administrators to easily create new browse indexes. . . .
    • Submissions The item submission system is now more configurable by managing the steps a user follows when submitting a new item to the repository. The new submission system allows for these steps to be rearranged, removed, and even allows for new steps to be added. . . .
    • Events Another under-the-hood improvement introduced in DSpace 1.5 is the event system, which improves scalability and modularity by introducing an event model to the architecture. This feature will allow future add-ons to automatically manage content in the repository based upon when an object has been added, modified, or removed from the system.
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      College & Research Libraries Makes Preprints Available, but Restricts Access

      Posted in ALA, Copyright, E-Prints, Open Access, Publishing, Scholarly Journals, Self-Archiving on March 22nd, 2008

      The Association of College and Research Libraries' journal, College & Research Libraries, is now offering access to preprints on its site; however, access is restricted to ACRL members.

      According to the C&RL Manuscript Preparation page, the typical post-review publication delay for papers is about one year.

      This preprint strategy does not appear to preclude authors from depositing preprints elsewhere after publication. Below is an excerpt from the C&RL Manuscript Preparation page (emphasis added):

      The agreement between ACRL and the author is license to publish. The author retains copyright and thus is free to post the article on an institutional or personal web page subsequent to publication in C&RL. All material in the journal may be photocopied for the noncommercial purpose of scientific or educational advancement.

      The American Librarian Library Association's author agreement that C&RL uses states (emphasis added):

      1. In consideration of the Publisher’s agreement to publish the Work, Author hereby grants and assigns to Publisher the right to print, publish, reproduce, or distribute the Work throughout the world in all means of expression by any method now known or hereafter developed, including electronic format, and to market or sell the Work or any part of it as it sees fit. Author further grants Publisher the right to use Author’s name in association with the Work in published form and in advertising and promotional materials. Copyright of the Work remains in Author’s name.
      2. Author agrees not to publish the Work in print form prior to publication of the Work by the Publisher. [ALA requests that should you publish the Work elsewhere, you cite the publication in ALA’s Publication, by author, title, and publisher, through a tagline, author bibliography, or similar means.]

      The author agreement says nothing about restricting the author's right to distribute digital preprints, yet the Manuscript Preparation page implies that the author is not free to do so prior to publication. Which is it?

      If authors are free to distribute their own digital preprints, what good does it do to restrict access to preprints at the ACRL Website? This policy appears to make no sense unless ACRL believes that authors' motivation to distribute their own preprints will be undermined by ACRL making them available or unless ACRL believes that its authors simply have little or no interest in distributing their own preprints.

      Perhaps the C&RL Manuscript Preparation page is just poorly worded. If so, it would be helpful if it were corrected.

      But even if this is the case, it begs the question: "What is ACRL, which is actively promoting open access on many fronts, doing making C&RL's preprint service restricted?" While ACRL directly providing access to preprints at the C&RL Website is a welcome step forward, restricting access to those preprints is taking two steps back, and, although well intended, it sends the wrong message for an organization that is trying to move the open access agenda forward.

      Read more about it at "C&RL Launches Preprints!"

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        Microsoft Developing Authoring Add-in for Microsoft Office Word 2007 with NLM DTD Support

        Posted in Digital Repositories, E-Prints, Institutional Repositories, Open Access, Publishing, Self-Archiving on March 22nd, 2008

        Microsoft is developing an Article Authoring Add-in for Microsoft Office Word 2007, which will support the NLM DTD. A Technology Preview of the Add-in is available.

        Here's an excerpt from the Technical Computing @ Microsoft—Scholarly Publishing page:

        In support of the increased emphasis on electronic publishing and archiving of scholarly articles, Microsoft has developed the Article Authoring Add-in for Microsoft Office Word 2007. This add-in will support the XML format from the National Library of Medicine (NLM), which is commonly used in the scientific, technical, and medical (STM) publishing market as part of the publishing workflow and as the format used for the archiving of articles. Pre-release versions of this add-in will target the staff at STM journals and publishers, at information repositories, and in-house and commercial software developers supporting the STM market.

        The Article Authoring Add-in for Word 2007 will enable or simplify a number of activities that are part of the authoring and scholarly publishing process, such as:

        • gathering information about the authors and article content at the time the article is written;
        • enabling journals to provide authors with templates containing the structure for articles, and information for self-classification of the articles by the authors;
        • enabling access to the authors and article metadata contained in the Word file through the use of the NLM format and OpenXML document structure;
        • enabling the editorial staff to have access to the article and journal metadata directly within Word; and
        • enabling two-way conversion between Office OpenXML and the NLM format.

        Greg Tananbaum consulted with Microsoft on the development of the tool.

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          Purdue Faculty Affairs Committee Endorses Addendum to Publication Agreements for CIC Authors

          Posted in Author Rights, Copyright, Open Access, Self-Archiving on March 19th, 2008

          The Purdue Faculty Affairs Committee has endorsed the Committee on Institutional Cooperation's Addendum to Publication Agreements for CIC Authors.

          Here's an excerpt from the Addendum:

          1. The Author shall, without limitation, have the non-exclusive right to use, reproduce, distribute, and create derivative works including update, perform, and display publicly, the Article in electronic, digital or print form in connection with the Author’s teaching, conference presentations, lectures, other scholarly works, and for all of Author’s academic and professional activities.
          2. After a period of six (6) months from the date of publication of the article, the Author shall also have all the non-exclusive rights necessary to make, or to authorize others to make, the final published version of the Article available in digital form over the Internet, including but not limited to a website under the control of the Author or the Author’s employer or through digital repositories including, but not limited to, those maintained by CIC institutions, scholarly societies or funding agencies.
          3. The Author further retains all non-exclusive rights necessary to grant to the Author’s employing institution the non-exclusive right to use, reproduce, distribute, display, publicly perform, and make copies of the work in electronic, digital or in print form in connection with teaching, conference presentations, lectures, other scholarly works, and all academic and professional activities conducted at the Author’s employing institution.

          Read more about it at "Purdue University Senate Passes CIC Author's Copyright Contract Addendum."

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            Presentations from the Open Access Collections Workshop Now Available

            Posted in Copyright, Data Curation, Open Data, and Research Data Management, Digital Repositories, Institutional Repositories, Open Access, Open Source Software, Scholarly Communication on March 18th, 2008

            Presentations from the Australian Partnership for Sustainable Repositories' Open Access Collections workshop are now available. Presentations are in HTML/PDF, MP3, and digital video formats. The workshop was held in association with the Queensland University Libraries Office of Cooperation and the University of Queensland Library.

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              Iowa Provost Issues Statement about Open Access MFA Theses Dust-Up

              Posted in Copyright, Electronic Theses and Dissertations (ETDs), Institutional Repositories, Open Access, Self-Archiving on March 17th, 2008

              MFA students at the University of Iowa have been upset about a requirement that would make their theses available as open access documents either immediately or in two years (if they ask for an extension). A number of student blog postings have protested this requirement. Part of the problem is that MFA theses can be creative works (or other types of works, such as nonfiction works) that may have commercial potential. Peter Suber has analyzed the situation in his "Controversy over OA for Fine Arts Theses and Dissertations" posting.

              The Interim Provost, Lola Lopes, has now issued a statement about the conflict.

              Here's an excerpt from that statement:

              For some time now our library, like most major academic research libraries, has been exploring ways to make its collections more accessible by digitizing some materials. As part of that process, there has been discussion about the possibility of making graduate student dissertations and theses available in electronic format. But any such process must be preceded by developing policies and procedures that allow authors to decide whether and when to allow distribution.

              On Monday, March 17, I will begin pulling together a working group with representatives from the Graduate College, University Libraries, our several writing programs, and all other constituencies who wish to be part of the process. Under the leadership of Carl Seashore in 1922, Iowa became the first university in the United States to award MFA degrees based on creative projects. Although this has been a rocky start, I like to think that Iowa will again lead the way by developing policies and procedures that safeguard intellectual property rights while preserving materials for the use of scholars in generations to come.

              Read more about it at "Iowa's 'Open Access' Policy Is Nothing but a Trojan Horse"; "Students, UI Grapple over Online Publishing"; "Thesis Policy Sparks Uproar"; "U. of Iowa Writing Students Revolt Against a Plan They Say Would Give Away Their Work on the Web"; and "Writing Students Want UI Not to Give Away Their Work."

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                Open Access Advocate Jan Velterop on Leaving Springer

                Posted in Open Access, Publishing on March 14th, 2008

                Jan Velterop has posted "Onwards from Open Access" on his Weblog The Parachute in which he discusses his decision to leave his position Director of Open Access at Springer to join Knewco.

                Here's an excerpt from the posting:

                As many of my readers will already know, I have recently decided to leave my position of Director of Open Access at Springer for that of CEO of Knewco Inc. Several reactions that I have since received indicate to me that my move is not necessarily understood by everyone, and I've even seen speculations that my leaving open access might mean that it is not going anywhere at Springer.

                Let me say the following to that. First of all, OA has developed some very solid roots within Springer and I am most confident that OA is being further developed with alacrity by my successors at Springer.

                Secondly, I don’t feel that I am leaving open access. Open access is not some club that one is a member of or not; it is a 'thought form' that one adheres to. And open access is only one of the ways in which the speed, efficiency and quality of scientific discovery can be enhanced. . . .

                If the underlying motive is, however, to get the most out of the scientific knowledge that has been gathered, which it is in my case, then moving on from open access to the semantic web—the concept web, if you wish—feels, at least to me, an entirely logical step. . . . We are in a situation of overwhelming—and growing—abundance of scientific information, and methods that deal with that abundance are clearly needed. This is what Knewco people are working on, and I am very excited to join them.

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                  Several Publisher Associations Release Joint Statement on Journal Publishing Agreements and Copyright Agreement Addenda

                  Posted in Author Rights, Copyright, Open Access, Publishing, Scholarly Journals, Self-Archiving on March 10th, 2008

                  The International Association of Scientific, Technical & Medical Publishers (STM), the Professional/Scholarly Publishing Division of the Association of American Publishers (PSP), and the Association of Learned and Professional Society Publishers (ALPSP) have released the "STM/PSP/ALPSP Statement on Journal Publishing Agreements and Copyright Agreement 'Addenda'."

                  Here's an excerpt from the STM press release:

                  The debate on the rights that authors have (or indeed it is claimed inaccurately, do not have) over their published works continues to rage, and much coverage has been given to purportedly restrictive practices or policies, when in fact they do not exist for the majority of publishers.

                  The most recent examples surround the vote of the Faculty of Arts and Sciences at Harvard for university ownership and distribution of research papers (February 2008). One advocate of the Harvard policy claims that this step was taken because "the scholarly publishing system has become far more restrictive than it need be [… m]any publishers will not even allow scholars to use and distribute their own work." (See

                  This is not only an inaccurate perception of the role of publishers and copyright, but also means that advocating authors to modify existing journal publishing agreements with "copyright addenda" is simply a call for needless bureaucracy. . . .

                  STM publishers invariably allow the authors of journal articles to use their published papers in their own teaching and for educational purposes generally within their institutions. Most journals have policies that permit authors to provide copies of their papers to research colleagues, and to re-use portions of their papers in further works or books. Although some news-oriented science and medical magazines have a few restrictions on pre-publication posting, almost all research journals permit the posting by the author or the author's institution of some version of the paper on the Internet.

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                    Presentations from the SCOAP3 US Focal Meeting

                    Posted in E-Journals, Open Access, Publishing, Scholarly Communication, Scholarly Journals, Serials Crisis on March 9th, 2008

                    SCOAP3 (Sponsoring Consortium for Open Access Publishing in Particle Physics) has released presentations from its SCOAP3 US Focal meeting at the University of California at Berkeley.

                    Here is an excerpt from the announcement that lists the presentations:

                    To find out more about SCOAP3, see the About SCOAP3 page.

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                      Open Access Advocate Jan Velterop Exits Springer to Join KnewCo

                      Posted in Open Access, Publishing on March 7th, 2008

                      Springer has announced that Jan Velterop, Director of Open Access at that publisher, will leave Springer to become the CEO of KnewCo Inc. Knewco's mission is to: "deploy its advanced semantic technology to accelerate key elements of the scientific process, and specifically semantic enrichment of web-published content, to support on-line knowledge discovery."

                      Here's an excerpt from the press release:

                      Springer launched its Springer Open Choice service in July 2004 as a pioneering project which provides an additional publication option to the traditional subscription model. Authors can choose to make their articles freely available worldwide on the Internet, for a fee of 3,000 US dollars. Open Choice is Springer's response to the sometimes energetic debate on the open access publishing model.

                      Velterop is one of the most prominent figures of the open access community. He joined Springer in August 2005 from BioMedCentral, an established open access biomedical research publisher, where he was Publishing Director. . . .

                      "When I joined Springer to promote Open Choice, I did so knowing that it would not be enough to simply promote this service to authors in the scientific community. I realized that a large part of my role would be to convince publishers that open access was not a threat to established publishing companies, but rather an opportunity. I am happy to say that the reaction from authors and institutions was positive and that my colleagues have come to accept that Open Choice can be a valid alternative to the subscription model, especially in some disciplines," said Velterop. . . .

                      Springer will continue to develop Open Choice and remains committed to growing the share of articles published using open access. Wim van der Stelt, Executive Vice President of Business Development will be responsible for Springer Open Choice going forward.

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                        Acta Crystallographica Section E Adopts Author-Pays OA Model and Creative Commons License

                        Posted in Copyright, Creative Commons/Open Licenses, E-Journals, Open Access, Publishing, Scholarly Journals on March 6th, 2008

                        The International Union of Crystallography has adopted a very modest publication fee ($150) to support open access to Acta Crystallographica Section E: Structure Reports Online. It has also put the journal under a Creative Commons Attribution License.

                        Read more about it at "Acta Crystallographica E is Open Access."

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