Open Access News

News from the open access movement

Friday, March 23, 2007

Nature on OA data for published articles

Attila Csordás, Nature Publishing Editor on the idea of a public scientific multimedia site, PIMM, March 22, 2007.  Csordás conducted an email interview with Maxine Clarke on Nature's data sharing policy.  Clarke is the Publishing Executive Editor at Nature.  Excerpt (quoting Clarke):

If there were to be a multimedia [open-access] database, accepted by the community, we’d be happy to consider making deposition [of multimedia data] mandatory. Our principle is that data described in our papers are freely available, so if there were a community-approved public multimedia site, which included annotation and curation, we’d be happy to consider making it a condition of publication for movies etc to be deposited in it. It would need to be publisher-independent to work, so that authors could upload multimedia data wherever they’d published their paper.

The main point for us at Nature is that as a publisher we have to be confident that material published off our website is properly curated, archived and preserved. For example, when we introduced the microarray deposition policy we ensured that there was full community support for the two databases (in one of which, authors’ choice, we require deposition) before implementing the policy. So for this video idea to work, the “database” concerned would need to be publicly accessible (not commercial), curated, annotated etc....

Supplementary Information [SI] on the Nature website is free, though you have to register....

At Nature (and the Nature journals), we make authors deposit data (eg sequences, structures, microarrays) when there is a public database (annotated and curated) available, and the accession number is provided in the paper.

Our current policies are [here]....

Update. PZ Myers at Pharyngula builds on this post, and Attila's previous post, and thinks about places to deposit OA supplemental info. (Thanks to Garrett Eastman.) He mentions Google Base as one possibility and his readers mention others in their comments --eventually getting around to OA, OAI-compliant repositories.