Open Access News

News from the open access movement

Wednesday, August 08, 2007

Google's OA mandate for research on Google data

Google is sharing data with researchers under an interesting proviso:  the results of their research on the data must be OA.  From Dorothea Salo on SOAF:

Sue Dentinger of the Library Technology Group at the University of Wisconsin at Madison noticed that the new University Research Program for Google Search appears to require open access to the results of research on Google-provided datasets:

This research program is being made available to members of the academic community. Each applicant must review and adhere to the full terms, which include the following restrictions:

  • …The program may be used exclusively for academic research, and research results must be made available to the public….

Section 2.2 of the program's Terms of Service reads:

2.2 Use of Data and Attribution. The Service is being made available to you with the intention of furthering the public good through academic research. You agree that any scholarly works produced from research conducted using the Service (the "Scholarly Work") shall be made available to any member of the public on reasonable and nondiscriminatory terms, that copies of the Scholarly Work will be freely available to the public online, and notification of the existence of such works must be made to all interested parties without bias.

This is novel, I believe. It is like a funder OA mandate, except that Google is providing raw materials for research rather than direct funding.

Comment.  Dorothea is right:  this is novel and Google’s mandate is like a funder mandate except that Google is providing data rather than money.  Kudos to Google, both for sharing its data with researchers and for requiring that researchers share the results of their research in turn.