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There's a new book digitization project from Kirtas Technologies, maker of a book-scanning machine, and BookSurge, a subsidiary of Amazon specializing in print-on-demand (POD). Two academic libraries and two public libraries (Emory University, the University of Maine, the Toronto Public Library, and the Cincinnati Public Library) will digitize some of their rare public-domain books and sell POD versions through Amazon. More libraries will join the project over time.
I blogged the Emory project when it was announced in early June because Emory said it would provide online access to its copies of the digital books. But I didn't initially blog the larger project when it launched two days ago because none of the public sources suggested an OA connection. Apart from Emory, it looked like an all-POD project.
However, I just learned from Joyce Rumery, Dean of Libraries at the University of Maine, that Maine will provide free online access to its copies of the books.
(Emory didn't say it would provide free online access to the digital books. But either that's what it meant by online access or at least the Maine policy shows that the Kirtas-BookSurge terms allow participating libraries to offer free online access.)
That changes everything. Now that there's an OA connection, I can blog it. Here's some of the press:
From the BookSurge press release, the most detailed of the public sources to date:
Springer and Dutch library consortium to cooperate in open access initiative, a press release from the Dutch UKB (Universiteitsbibliotheken en de Koninklijke Bibliotheek), June 21, 2007. Excerpt:
Also see the press release in Dutch.
Comment. This has interesting potential, but we'll have to wait for more details before we know what's new here. Springer authors can already get immediate OA for their articles if they pay Springer's publication fee. The announcement suggests that Springer's OA authors from UKB-member institutions will get OA from the moment of acceptance. But am I reading that correctly? Would that create two OA editions, one copy-edited and one not? What does it mean to limit this offer to the "framework of the existing licensing agreement with UKB"? Will Springer also offer fee waivers to its OA authors from UKB-member institutions? Springer already allows deposit of its OA articles in DARE repositories. (Indeed, with some qualifications it allows deposit of its non-OA articles.) The "long-term open access agreement" between Springer and UKB isn't specified, but my guess is that it will include trusted preservation for Springer's digital publications. I'll post more when I know more.
Update. Inge Angevaare, Executive Secretary of the UKB, has sent me helpful answers to my questions. (Thanks, Inge.) First, Springer will waive publication fees for authors from UKB-member institutions. Second, the OA articles under this program will be copy-edited and become OA at the moment of publication.
Charles Ellwood Jones reports that these three journals have converted to OA:
SPARC video contest to showcase student views on information sharing, a press release from SPARC, June 21, 2007. Excerpt:
Spain's Consejo Superior de Investigaciones Científicas (or Spanish National Research Council, CSIC) has converted 12 of its 32 journals to OA and plans to convert the rest. The OA conversion program is CSIC's way of following through on its decision, in January 2006, to sign the Berlin Declaration on Open Access. (Thanks to NetBib.)
Update. Also see Carol Minton Morris's notes on the same talk.
Update. Also see Deborah Kaplan's notes.
Rob Garner, Public Data Gone Wild: The Google Public Sector Initiative, SearchInsider, June 20, 2007. Excerpt:
From Mark Patterson, PLoS Director of Publishing, on the PLoS blog:
Malaria Journal Ranks Number One in Field of Tropical Medicine, a press release from BioMed Central. Excerpt:
PS: Congratulations to the whole MJ team.
The UK Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs (DEFRA) has launched a carbon footprint calculator that uses open-source software to generate open data on carbon emissions. (Thanks to Glyn Moody.) From the DEFRA press release:
From another DEFRA page on the calculator:
Comment. Kudos to DEFRA. For a similar project, see the Zerofootprint carbon calculator, which also generates open data and which forms the basis of the BusinessObjects challenge, Can Open Data Save the World?
Education to get new edge with access to resources, Express India, June 19, 2007.
Roy Tennant, Something for Nothing and Books for Free, Digital Libraries blog, June 19, 2007.
Andrea Gawrylewski, New site pits 'published' vs. 'posted', TheScientist, June 19, 2007. Excerpt:
Comment. These issues have long since been settled for researchers and journals in the fields covered by arXiv and other preprint archives. The trend is toward the decline of the Ingelfinger Rule and the rise of preprint archiving. But we'll see how this plays out in the fields covered by Nature Precedings (biology, medicine, chemistry, and geoscience) and whether Nature Precedings itself can affect the outcome. For example, if researchers take to it in numbers even remotely approaching those of arXiv, then journals will have to accommodate it.
Liz Lyon, Dealing with Data: Roles, Rights, Responsibilities and Relationships Consultancy Report, JISC, June 19, 2007. In addition to recommending OA for research data, the report summarizes the public statements supporting OA policies (Section 4.1, pp. 13-14) and the data access policies for major research funders, data centers, and repositories in the UK (Section 5, pp. 16-43). Excerpt:
Adrian K. Ho and Joe Toth, Content Recruitment for Institutional Repositories (IR's), self-archived June 20, 2007.
Free, unlimited access to two thousand years of mankind and medicine in pictures made available through Creative Commons Licence, a press release from the Wellcome Trust, June 18, 2007. Excerpt:
Update. Klaus Graf objects that Wellcome wants to restrict commercial use, that it wants to do so in ways that are inconsistent with the CC-NC license, that some of these images are under copyright by others and should not be restricted or licensed by Wellcome, and that some are in the public domain and should not be restricted at all.
Jocelyn Kaiser, Senate Gives NIH a Raise, ScienceNOW Daily News, June 20, 2007. Excerpt:
Here's how RedMonk describes itself:
Also see Technonbabble's short essay, In praise of open source analysis, June 5, 2007.
Here are some closing reflections by David Bollier from June 18:
The other day I blogged Adam Hodgkin's argument that OA (after an embargo or moving wall) makes sense for consumer magazines even though they, unlike scholarly journals, pay their authors. Hodgkin's post was part of an excellent series and I want to draw attention to the whole thing:
Timo Hannay, Nature Precedings is live, Nascent, June 18, 2007. Hannay is Nature's Director of Web Publishing. Excerpt:
Salvatore Mele, Open Access Publishing in High-Energy Physics, a presentation at ElPub 2007, Openness in Digital Publishing: Awareness, Discovery and Access (Vienna, June 13-15, 2007).
From the conclusion:
Kuan-Teh Jeang, Impact factor, H index, peer comparisons, and Retrovirology: is it time to individualize citation metrics? Retrovirology, June 18, 2007. Excerpt:
PS: This is not auspicious. These collections are invariably called archives or repositories, not depositories; the results of this survey will not be OA; and the Primary Research Group doesn't seem to know that both ROAR and OpenDOAR answer the first question ("types of software used") without need for a survey.
The Journal of Experimental Botany is one of the 50 Oxford hybrid journals. On April 1, it tweaked its business model and waived its publication fee for authors from institutions that pay for a subscription. For now, it's the only Oxford Open journal to use this variation on the theme. From today's announcement:
For more details, see the journal's page on open access.
Comment. Kudos to JXB for exploring the large "solution space" of OA and trying this innovation. For authors at subscribing institutions, JXB is now in effect a no-fee OA journal. While this policy will increase the incentive for institutions to subscribe, it should also increase the rate of author uptake and the volume of OA content. I don't know another hybrid journal to try this exact variation. Many hybrid journals reduce the fee (without waiving it) for authors from subscribing institutions, and another botany journal, Plant Physiology, waives the fee for authors who are members of the society publishing the journal, the American Society of Plant Biology.
From his review of E-LIS:
From his review of the ACM Digital Library:
ProQuest will complete the migration of its dissertation database to its new platform on July 22, 2007. The old platform was called ProQuest Digital Dissertations (PQDD) and the new one is called ProQuest Dissertations and Theses (PQDT). From ProQuest's page on the migration progress:
I wrote to ProQuest to find out whether these OA dissertations were free for all users or only free for subscribers. I got this helpful response from Mike Visser, the Product Manager for Dissertations & Theses ProQuest, which I reprint with his permission:
Charles W. Bailey Jr. has released version 68 of his comprehensive Scholarly Electronic Publishing Bibliography. The new version cites and organizes over 3,040 print and online articles, books, and other sources on scholarly electronic publishing.
PS: The action alert makes it easy to send a message supporting the bill to the director of the EPA and your Congressional delegation. US citizens: please send that message and spread the word.
Heather Morrison, Candice Dahl, and Jennifer Richard, Librarianship and the Open Access Journal : State of the Union, a slide presentation at the Canadian Library Association Conference 2007 (St. John's, May 23-26, 2007).
Panos Ipeirotis, Are Publishers Making Themselves Useless? A Computer Scientist in a Business School, June 18, 2007. Excerpt:
Mark Chillingworth, Is Nature Preceding the bandwagon? Information World Review, June 19, 2007. Excerpt:
Comment. Weinberger and McCormick are both right. Nature's entry into OA archiving helps the cause: the more OA archives the better; the more OA content, the better; and the more journal support for OA archiving the better. But 900+ university and disciplinary archives led the way and their contents are exactly as citable as those in Nature Precedings.
Eric Mockensturm has launched a wiki, Open Source Publishing 2.0, outlining a proposal on which he is inviting collaboration. Excerpt:
Update. Also see Eric's blog post about the proposal (June 18, 2007) and the comments it has generated.
Charles G. Howes and Leonard J. Foster, PrestOMIC, an open source application for dissemination of proteomic datasets by individual laboratories, Proteome Science, June 6, 2007. Abstract:
Thomas Stamm and five co-authors, A retrospective analysis of submissions, acceptance rate, open peer review operations, and prepublication bias of the multidisciplinary open access journal Head & Face Medicine, Head and Face Medicine, June 11, 2007. Provisional abstract:
Charlotte Hubbard, 5 more of BioMed Central's independent journals tracked by Thomson Scientific, BioMed Central blog, June 18, 2007. Excerpt:
The iCommons Summit 2007 (Dubrovnik, June 15-17, 2007) ended yesterday. The presentations aren't online, but here are three sets of blog notes about the events.
From David Bollier at On the commons:
From an unsigned post on OpenBusiness:
Also see Rufus Pollock on the Open Knowledge Foundation blog, who has more detail on the keynotes by Zittrain and Lessig.
Update. For Lessig's own detailed account of his change of plans, see his blog post from June 19, 2007.
Thanasis Priftis interviewed Michael Geist about OA for Re-Public (undated but apparently new). Excerpt:
Mark Patterson, Paying for open access publishing - a role for institutions, PLoS blog, June 17, 2007. Excerpt:
William New, In A ‘Major Achievement’, WIPO Negotiators Create New Development Mandate, IP-Watch, June 18, 2007. Excerpt:
PS: Why does this matter for OA? Because it greatly improves the prospects for the draft A2K Treaty (May 9, 2005), which includes a provision (Article 5-2) mandating OA for publicly-funded research. The treaty is a central part of the Development Agenda, which is now becoming part of the WIPO mandate. For more on the OA implications of the WIPO Development Agenda, see SOAN for October 2004. (Disclaimer: I took part in the drafting of the OA provision of the A2K Treaty.)
Hannes Hug, "OAI - Offener Zugang zu wissenschaftlichem Wissen," EUCOR-Bibliotheksinformationen, No. 29, April 2007; scroll to p. 4. (Thanks to Klaus Graf.)
On the University of Basel's decision to sign the Berlin Declaration on Open Access as "a first active step" toward providing OA to its research output. Because the file is a PDF, I can't link to a machine translation.
ETH Zurich (Eidgenössische Technische Hochschule Zürich) is digitizing and providing OA to the backfiles of the technical journals of the Schweizerischer Ingenieur- und Architektenverein (SIA, Swiss Engineers and Architects Society). For details on the project, see the ETH's pre-launch announcement in English:
Ales Fajgelj, Assuring Quality of Analytical Measurement Results: The IUPAC Role, Chemistry International, May/June 2007. Chemistry International is the news magazine of the International Union of Pure and Applied Chemistry. Excerpt:
New Zealand makes statistics data free to encourage business - but where’s the logic? Free Our Data blog, June 15, 2007. Excerpt: