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Jim Till, Assessing medical ethics journals, Be openly accessible or be obscure, June 21, 2008. Evaluates the OA policies of several top journals in medical ethics and bioethics, and OA to articles in PubMed with the tag "ethics".
Matthew Cockerill has blogged the presentations on Putting Open Access Publishing into Practice: funding mechanisms, institutional collaboration and building repositories from the ARMA/INORMS 2008 conference (Liverpool, June 18, 2008).
The June issue of the Journal of Science Communication is now available. OA-related articles:
John F. Hobbins, New Online Ancient Near East Monograph Series Established, Ancient Hebrew Poetry, June 20, 2008.
The Society of Biblical Literature, in partnership with the Centro de Estudios de Historia del Antiguo Oriente, Universidad Católica Argentina, announces the establishment of a new online, open-access monograph series. The focus of the series will be on the ancient Near East, including ancient Israel and its literature, from the early Neolithic to the early Hellenistic eras. Proposals and manuscripts may be submitted in either Spanish or English. Manuscripts are subject to blind peer review by two members of the series’ editorial board before acceptance. ...
Molecular Brain is a new OA, peer-reviewed journal of "studies on the nervous system at the molecular, cellular and systems level". The journal is published by BioMed Central, which announced the release on June 19. Authors retain copyright to their articles, which are available under the Creative Commons Attribution License. Article-processing charges are £800 (€1015, US$1560), subject to discounts and waivers.
Charles Bailey, Journal of the American Society for Information Science and Technology Goes Green, DigitalKoans, June 20, 2008.
More from the Early View editorial:
Comment. I applaud the substance of the new JASIST policy. However, in one respect it will create needless confusion. JASIST requires authors to label their self-archived manuscripts as "preprints" even when they have been approved by the JASIST peer review process. To most readers, "preprint" means that a manuscript has not yet been refereed. JASIS does allow self-archiving of the peer-reviewed manuscript, which is the important point of substantive policy. It shouldn't require the use of a misleading label.
Gunther Eysenbach, ISI/SCI Journal Impact Factors in Medical Informatics: Open Access Journal on Top, Gunther Eysenbach Random Research Rants, June 21, 2008. Excerpt:
On May 21, Indiana University posted an update on the Shared Digital Repository Project, a consortial repository for the 12 institutional members of the Committee on Institutional Cooperation. (Thanks to Charles Bailey.) Excerpt:
Cory Doctorow, Blackstone Audio phases out audiobook DRM, Boing Boing, June 20, 2008.
Cory Doctorow, Oregon folds: Legislative Counsel's Committee says Oregon's laws aren't copyrighted, Boing Boing, June 19, 2008.
Rogue archivist Carl Malamud sez,See also the post at the Justia blog and the prepared statements submitted to the committee.
Robert Adler, et al., Citation Statistics, a report by the International Mathematical Union, the International Council of Industrial and Applied Mathematics, and the Institute of Mathematical Statistics, June 12, 2008. (Thanks to Wired Campus.) From the executive summary:
From the body of the report, discussing the ambiguous meaning (and thus value) of citations:
... [M]ost citations are rhetorical. ... Why is this important? Because unlike "reward" citations, which tend to refer to seminal papers, the choice of which paper to cite rhetorically depends on many factors—the prestige of the cited author (the "halo" effect), the relationship of the citing and cited authors, the availability of the journal (Are open access journals more likely to be cited?), the convenience of referencing several results from a single paper, and so forth. Few of these factors are directly related to the "quality" of the cited paper. ...Comment. In a recent post, I suggested "OA [would become] a more mainstream topic in scientometrics ...". As if on cue, here is a mainstream report on scientometrics, suggesting that the accessibility of a paper may be a factor in how frequently it is cited. The discussion of the OA advantage goes no further than that in the excerpt, but that it even warrants a mention is noteworthy.
See my further comments at gavinbaker.com.
Christian Zimmermann, Where are the women?, The RePEc blog, June 19, 2008.
Comment. As OA becomes a more mainstream topic in scientometrics and the sociology of science -- and as the benefits to authors become more widely accepted -- expect to see more attention to demographic concerns of participation. Who's being left out of the OA revolution?
Richard Poynder, The Open Access Interviews: Leslie Chan, Open and Shut? June 20, 2008. This is another of Richard's superb, detailed interviews. In addition to profiling Leslie's tireless and important work for OA, and how he came to it, Richard gives useful background on how the broken system of scholarly communication is especially broken for researchers in developing countries. As usual, the hardest thing about blogging a Poynder interview is to keep the excerpt short. Read the whole thing. Excerpt:
There are currently two opportunities for the public to comment on registries for the results of clinical trials. (Thanks to Emma Veitch.)
The Smithsonian Institution announced on June 18 it had joined The Commons on Flickr, with an initial set of 800+ images. The photos are available here. (Thanks to Boing Boing.) From the announcement:
... The images in this initial Smithsonian posting came from the collections of the National Museum of the American Indian, National Postal Museum, Anacostia Community Museum, Archives of American Art, Smithsonian Institution Archives, Center for Folklife and Cultural Heritage, and Smithsonian Institution Libraries. ...Comment. The Smithsonian is the fourth institution to join The Commons, after the Library of Congress, the Powerhouse Museum, and the Brooklyn Museum.
The Smithsonian was previously the target of guerrilla archiving by Public.Resource.Org, which posted 6,000+ of the institution's images on Flickr more than a year ago.
The Center for Government Studies and Indiana University-Purdue University Indianapolis officially launched PolicyArchive, the first OA repository for public policy research. PolicyArchive is built on DSpace. From today's announcement:
Update. The repository has been online for some time and we blogged a pre-launch preview last October.
James Grimmelmann, Copyright, Technology, and Access to the Law: An Opinionated Primer, self-published essay, June 17, 2008. (Thanks to Andrew Raff.)
Recently, the state of Oregon has used copyright law to threaten people who were publishing its laws online. Can they really do that? More to the point, why would they? This essay will put the Oregon fracas in historical context, and explain the public policies at stake. Ultimately, it’ll try to convince you that Oregon’s demands, while wrong, aren’t unprecedented. People have been claiming copyright in “the law” for a long time, and at times they’ve been able to make a halfway convincing case for it. While there are good answers to these arguments, they’re not always the first ones that come to hand. It’s really only the arrival of the Internet that genuinely puts the long-standing goal of free and unencumbered access to the law within our grasp. ...Comment. If you're looking for a thorough legal, historical, and ethical overview to this issue, start here. This excerpt is just the tip of the iceberg.
Jonathan Gray, Over 200 Packages on CKAN!, Open Knowledge Foundation Weblog, June 17, 2008.
Matthew Cockerill, Official 2007 Impact Factors show excellent performance by BioMed Central journals, BioMed Central Blog, June 19, 2008.
See also our post on 2007 impact factors for PLoS journals.
On June 18, David Solomon announced he had released an OA abridgment of his book, Developing Open Access Electronic Journals: A Practical Guide, available for download here. From the announcement:
... This version lacks the chapters covering background information and the depth of coverage of the topics in the original book. It is organized in an outline format. ...See also our coverage of the book's release. We also linked to a review of the book from Learned Published.
aspeers is a new, peer-reviewed OA journal of American studies. The inaugural issue was released in April 2008. According to the journal site, "Most members of the reviewing editorial staff are MA candidates [in the American Studies program at the University of Leipzig]". The journal will be issued annually and is also available in print (via print-on-demand). (Thanks to Heather Morrison.)
David Lipman is one of 29 finalists for a 2008 Service to America Medal or "Sammie". The Sammies are presented every year by the non-profit, non-partisan Partnership for Public Service to outstanding employees of the US federal government. The finalists were announced yesterday, and the Sammies will be awarded on September 16, in Washington, D.C.
Comment. Congratulations to David, one of the unsung or insufficiently sung heroes of OA. If time is short, you can catch up on his long career of dedication to OA through this 2003 interview in Open Access Now or this 2007 interview for KRUU FM. If time is not short, see my many past posts about him and his work.
Update (6/23/08). Also see Megan Scudellari's story in The Scientist. Excerpt:
Tim Armstrong, An Open Access Success Story, Just in Time for CALI, Info/Law, June 17, 2008.
Taylor & Francis have launched a new journal, The Sixties. It's not OA, though it does participate in iOpenAccess, the T&F hybrid OA program. I'm blogging it because of an unusual wrinkle in its access policy. You won't find it described on the journal web site (not even under "Full Pricing Details"). But here's a description from yesterday's story in News Blaze:
Eric Lease Morgan, Top Tech Trends for ALA (Summer ‘08), LITA Blog, June 19, 2008. Excerpt:
Update (6/29/08). Sarah Houghton-Jan posted her list of top technology trends to the same blog. She sticks to five, and OA still makes the cut:
Libraries are going to soon start getting off of our pricey pedestals and only featuring digital content that we pay for. Yes, we all pay thousands of dollars for some excellent downloadable audio books, encyclopedias, journals, and a lot more. But all of that lovely open access (read: free) digital content that exists out there through sites like the Directory of Open Access Journals, Project Gutenberg, and more are credible and respected, and we owe it to our users to let them know about this content.
From the SCOAP3 announcement:
W.Y. Fan and six co-authors, Traditional Chinese Medical Journals Currently Published in Mainland China, Journal of Alternative and Complementary Medicine, June 2008. The June issue isn't yet online, so I'm linking to the abstract at PubMed. From the abstract:
Agrega, a Spanish repository of open educational resources, launched recently. The project is funded by the Spanish Ministry of Education and Science; the Ministry of Industry, Tourism, and Commerce; and Spain's autonomous communities. The audience is teachers and students of primary and secondary schools, without any special technical experience. The materials are available under the Creative Commons BY-NC-SA license. (Thanks to Tecnología para Contenidos Abiertos Reutilizables.)
Mark Patterson, 2007 Impact factors for PLoS Journals, PLoS blog, June 18, 2008.
Javier de la Cueva, El derecho a la ciencia. La ciencia en abierto [The right to science: Science in the open], madri+d, March 2008. English abstract (edited from that provided for clarity):
The paper describes the typology of individual and collective authors with rights on scientific works, as well as the types of existing works, depending on the number of authors, their condition, and the organization under the work is created. Identifying authors and managing permissions is often a hard or impossible task that hinders innovation. Solutions that are being implemented in order to overcome the problem are the use of Copyleft works or mechanisms such as Open Access.
Brian Bell, Canadiana.org: One of Canada's oldest and newest digitization initiatives, Partnership: the Canadian Journal of Library and Information Practice and Research 3(1), 2008. (Thanks to Michel-Adrien Sheppard.) Abstract:
Canadiana.org is a new independent, non-profit, alliance of partners, including Library and Archives Canada, from all parts of Canada's cultural, heritage, research, broadcasting and publishing communities, chartered to raise funds, receive donations and grants and to act as the overall coordinator and facilitator for digitization initiatives and related enduring access services and preservation infrastructures. Working with Library and Archives Canada under the framework of the Canadian Digital Information Strategy, Canadiana.org has a 'master plan' to facilitate a coherent national digital information strategy. The community has developed a bilingual metadata toolkit to suit most types of material as an option for those who need it. The community also supports a powerful bilingual public access Indexing and Discovery Portal system (right now branded AlouetteCanada) to enhance the searching and discovery of local digital collections of all types across the country.
The DataShare project has produced a poster on open data utilities to be presented at the 4th International Conference on e-Social Science (Manchester, June 18-20, 2008). The poster contains an introduction to open data, information on visualization and geodata, examples, and questions for discussion.
The July 2008 issue of Learned Publishing is now available. OA-related articles:
Stevan Harnad, Nature's Fall from Aside the Angels, Open Access Archivangelism, June 16, 2008. Excerpt:
"We also support and encourage self-archiving of the author?s final version of accepted articles."
PS: Also see my own comments on the Inchcoombe interview.
Civil society organizations participating in the OECD 2008 Ministerial Meeting on the Future of the Internet Economy (Seoul, June 17-18, 2008) have issued the Seoul Declaration (June 16, 2008). Excerpt:
PS: According to Gwen Hinze at EFF (email to the A2K list), the Declaration has already been signed by "EPIC, EFF, EDRi, IRIS, IT4Change, Public Knowledge, APC, and Consumers Korea, Jinbonet, and many individuals." If it's still open for new signatures, could anyone point me to the web site collecting them? I'll blog the link here.
Update. Civil society organizations wishing to sign the declaration should send an email to Katitza Rodriguez Pereda of EPIC at katitz [at] datos-personales.org.
Update. Ziga Turk, the Slovenian Minister for Growth, blogged some notes on the declaration from Seoul this morning:
Update. My original post linked to the June 16 draft of the declaration, and Turk's post links to the June 18 final edition of the declaration. Note that the final edition deletes the paragraph in support of OA. I'd be grateful if anyone could shed light on the maneuvering behind this deletion.
Update. There are two Seoul Declarations, one by civil society organizations and one by OECD ministers. The former still includes the paragraph on OA and the latter (apparently) never did. Thanks to Sherman Siy of Public Knowledge for this important clarification.
Update. Also see the article in Mediacaster Magazine.
From the Chair, gscnews, June 2008. (Thanks to George Porter.)
... [T]he [Graduate Student Council] is trying to become more active on your behalf. From conversations with many of you, including our Academics Committee and appointees to the Faculty Library Committee, the first of these resolutions on your behalf is presently being drafted. The subject is open-access, particularly whether or not we, as publishing scientists, should maintain the copyright to our work when we publish. Currently many publishers require a transfer of copyright upon publication, and several professors at the institute simply cross these requirements off the contract when they submit work. However, while faculty can change their contracts and still expect their papers to be published, we graduate students cannot afford to be so cavalier. We are currently considering a resolution in favor of an opt-out policy for such rights maintenance, meaning that graduate students won't have to worry about haggling over the issue with different journals as that role will be filled by our library. Similar steps to protect these copyrights have already been taken by Harvard faculty and the National Institute of Health, along with professional societies in high-energy physics and neuroscience. Please let me know of any concerns you have moving forward with this, and I will relay them to the Faculty Library Committee (in addition to, of course, to the GSC Board of Directors).
Stefka Kaloyanova, et al., Achieving OAI PMH compliancy for CDS/ISIS databases, The Electronic Library 26(3), 2008. Abstract:
Purpose – ... [T]o present the work recently carried out by the Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations (FAO) in collaboration with Associazione per la documentazione le biblioteche e gli archivi (DBA) in Italy to make web CDS/ISIS-based applications compliant with the OAI-PMH. CDS/ISIS is an Integrated Storage and Information Retrieval System of Unesco, which is widely used especially in Latin America and Africa. There are hundreds of CDS/ISIS-based application systems managing bibliographical reference...
A librarian at the University of Auckland has collected a list of OA sources on New Zealand history, posted June 17.
Matthew Cockerill, Growing support for central open access publication funds, BioMed Central Blog, June 16, 2008.
Jean-Claude Guédon, A Take on Peter Suber's "The Opening of Science and Scholarship". A new contribution to the Publius Project of Harvard's Berkman Center for Internet and Society, June 16, 2008 (and a response to my contribution, The opening of science and scholarship). Excerpt:
Tom Chance, Open Source City in Liverpool Capital of Culture programme, Tom Chance's website, June 15, 2008.
... I'll be talking about a few philosophical perspectives on intellectual property, using Kant, Locke and Marx as my starting points. Should we follow Richard Stallman in thinking that there is a categorical imperative to share freely? Perhaps the nonrivalrous nature of information means there is a good case to leave it in common rather than seeking private ownership? Or should we be more concerned with the act of creation, the way in which people labour on ideas and information, and encourage spaces in which we can engage in unalienated labour? ...Update. See also the slides and related links from Chance's presentation.
Jonathan Eisen, Freeing My Father's Scientific Publications, The Tree of Life, June 16, 2008.
... [M]y father was a scientist too --- an MD who did research at the NIH ... Given my propensities for putting things on the web and trying to disseminate scientific information, I came up with a plan last night to create some sort of web page in his honor with some information about his work and his life. ...
The International African Institute and Edinburgh University Press have announced that their journal Africa: Journal of the International African Institute will be available free to libraries and non-profit research and educational institutions in some countries in Africa. (Thanks to Electronic Publishing Trust for Development.)
...This development comes at a time where electronic publishing and dissemination is offering opportunities to break with conventional models of research dissemination. Yet the African continent suffers lack of visibility for research output, and a chronic lack of financial resources in higher education and research institutions, including for journals subscriptions. Research seldom crosses borders within the continent, and there is a North-South divide in access to scholarly research and publication outlets.
Fedora 3.0 Beta 2 has been released. The new version
introduces the Content Model Architecture, a powerful ... integrated structure for persisting and delivering the essential characteristics of digital objects in Fedora while simplifying its use.The developers are requesting feedback from beta testers.
The following journals were added to the Directory of Open Access Journals since June 9, most recent first:
First Spanish Open Access explicit policy, DRIVER, June 12, 2008.
The Autonomous Community Government of Madrid has established the first open access policy, regarding their funding of research projects and requiring the deposit of their results in the available open access repositories of the "e-ciencia" [e-science] platform which includes all public universities of Madrid, the Spanish Research Council and UNED [National Distance Education University].Comment. The language here is still ambiguous (is it a "requirement" or a "recommendation"?), but this provides a bit more information than what we previously knew about this policy (which was in Spanish only).
The International Association of Scientific, Technical, and Medical Publishers has released a position paper on limitations & exceptions to copyright.
... The public interest of research and education is best served by encouraging the creation of new publications and information services with [education and research] audiences and markets in mind. For example, journal articles, academic treatises and textbooks are published by STM publishers for the very purpose of contributing to scholarly communication and education. Libraries for non-commercial research or non- commercial educational institutions are the primary purchasers of (or licensees for) STM publisher materials and services. Offering publications and information services to these non-commercial communities, eg by way of subscription or individual journal article supply, is the very essence of “normal exploitation” which must be left free of exceptions that prejudice the legitimate interests of rights-holders unreasonably.Comment. The paper goes on to discuss specific topics such as course packs, archiving, orphan works, and inter-library loan.
L&E's aren't OA, but they do offer the opportunity to reduce barriers to access and use (see, e.g., fair use). The position paper is also noteworthy because much of STM's rhetoric is identical to its positions on OA: that publishers are rightful rightsholders, that they provide useful services to the research and education communities, that their profit motive should be considered in the interest of research and education, etc.
See also Heather Morrison's comments on the paper:
... One of the disturbing elements of the STM statement is its complete lack of recognition of authors, as well as other contributors to scholarly publishing. ...See also past OAN posts on limitations and exceptions (1 and 2), as well as the post on OA as balance to copyright control.
Heather Morrison made two posts on the subject of self-archiving embargoes to her blog, The Imaginary Journal of Poetic Economics, on June 14, 2008:
Michael Cross, NHS plans to reveal surgeons' deathrates online, The Guardian, June 12, 2008. (See also the accompanying post on the Free Our Data blog.)
Roderic Page, From PDFs to Google Earth, iPhylo, June 13, 2008.
I've added a service to bioGUID that takes a PDF and attempts to extract latitude and longitude data ... returning those co-ordinates in either a Google Earth KML file, or in JSON format. ...
Joab Jackson, DOE expands global science portal, Government Computer News, June 12, 2008. (Thanks to ResourceShelf.)
An international science portal co-created by the Energy Department has expanded its scope to include connections to databases and scientific Web sites from more than 44 countries, Energy's Office of Scientific and Technical Information announced today.See also our past posts on WorldWideScience.org.
Update. See also the announcements from WorldWideScience.org and Science.gov.
Update. See also the announcement from the British Library.
Update. See also the blog post from the Office of Scientific and Technical Information.
Stevan Harnad, Citation Statistics: International Mathematical Union Report, Open Access Archivangelism, June 15, 2008.
OGF-Europe Connects Developers, Users of Digital Repositories, GRID Today, June 16, 2008. A report on the 23rd Open Grid Forum (Barcelona, June 2-6, 2008). Excerpt:
Jeremy Gardner, Open Access and Institutional Repositories: Issues in Todays Digital Libraries. Self-archived June 16, 2008. It looks like a student paper for LIS 505 at the University of Buffalo, taught by Christopher Brown-Syed. Excerpt:
...This paper aims to examine some of the current literature on the open access movement; specifically, its relationship with academic journals. This paper will also look at the issue of institutional repositories and its relationship to the OA movement....
HBCU Libraries Launch Online History Collection, Library Journal Academic Newswire, June 12, 2008.
The first digital collection of documents and materials chronicling the founding of America’s historically Black colleges and universities is now available online. The project, entitled A Digital Collection Celebrating the Founding of the Historically Black College and University, was funded by the Andrew W. Mellon Foundation, and represents “the first collaborative effort by Historically Black Colleges and Universities (HBCU) libraries to make a historical collection digitally available.” It includes more than 1000 scanned photographs, manuscripts, letters, and publications from ten institutions designated as Historically Black.
John Willinsky, Might the Age of Information Graduate into an Era of Public Knowledge? A new contribution to the Publius Project of Harvard's Berkman Center for Internet and Society, June 13, 2008 (and a response to my contribution, The opening of science and scholarship). Excerpt:
Research data takes centre stage at Edinburgh conference, JISC, June 12, 2008.
The management and preservation of research data moved centre stage at the [Society of College, National and University Libraries] conference in Edinburgh today. The annual gathering of senior librarians heard from a number of speakers about the information needs of the research community and in particular the role of libraries in managing the increasing amounts of research data being created. ...
The Theropod Archives is a collection of papers and citations (where no OA version is available) of articles about theropods. The site launched on May 29, 2008. (Thanks to Brian Switek and Judy Breck.)
Comment. One common argument dismissing OA is that few outside of academia have any interest in reading academic papers. It's interesting to note, then, that this collection of papers -- meticulously assembled and cited -- was prepared not by professional researchers, but by an amateur. I don't know whether this site would be valuable to a professional researcher, but it would clearly be a good starting place for an interested amateur, and access to these articles has clearly been meaningful to the archivist. As I've argued previously, that OA facilitates personal enrichment and lifelong learning is an argument in its favor -- especially at a time when scientific literacy is at a social premium.
Daniel Fisher, The Law Goes Open Source, Forbes, June 2008. (Thanks to Legal Research Plus.)
Tomas Lund?n, Publishing in Open Archives, Open Access Information, June 15, 2008. Nothing new here for readers of OAN, but it's a useful overview for others. If you suggest it to colleagues who are new to the topic, follow up with Stevan Harnad's Self-Archiving FAQ.
Update. Also see J?rgen Eriksson and Aina Svensson's similar piece at the same site, Introduction and Background to Open Access Journals.
Stevan Harnad, Journal Affordability, Research Accessibility, and Open Access, Open Access Archivangelism, June 14, 2008. Excerpt:
Poynder, Richard (2008) Open Access: Doing the Numbers. Open and Shut. Wednesday, 11 June 2008Excerpt: "Can OA reduce the costs associated with scholarly communication? If so, how, and when? If not, what are the implications of this for the "scholarly communication crisis?" These are important questions. But without accurate numbers to crunch we really cannot answer them adequately. Wouldn't it be great therefore if other publishers decided to be as "open" as APS in discussing their costs? One thing is for sure: If OA ends up simply shifting the cost of scholarly communication from journal subscriptions to APCs without any reduction in overall expenditure, and inflation continues unabated, many OA advocates will be sorely disappointed..."
PS: Note that LiquidPub is looking for a post-doc.
Update. Institute Jean Nicod is only one of four institutions collaborating on LiquidPub. The three principal investigators for the project are all from the University of Trento. (Thanks to Jim Law, at Trento, for the correction.)