Novel processes and metrics for a scientific evaluation: preliminary reflections

Reflections on  Michaël Bon, Michael Taylor, Gary S. McDowell. “Novel processes and metrics for a scientific evaluation rooted in the principles of science – Version 1”. SJS (26 Jan. 2017)

Following are my initial reflections on what I would describe as a ground-breaking effort toward articulating a radically transformation of scholarly communication, a transformation that I regard as much needed and highly timely as the current system is optimized for the technology of the 17th century (printing press and postal system) and is far from taking full advantage of the potential of the internet.

The basic idea described by the authors is to replace the existing practices of evaluation of scholarly work with a more collaborative and open system they call the Self-Journals of Science


The title Self-journals of science: I recommend coming up with a new name. The name is likely to give the impression of vanity publishing, even though this is not what the authors are suggesting, which appears to be more along the lines of a new form of collaborative organization of peer review.  

Section 1 Introduction: the inherent shortcomings of an asymetric evaluation system appears to attempt to describe how scientific communication works, its purpose, and critique, with citations, in just a few pages. This is sufficient to tell the reader where the authors are coming from, but too broad in scope to have much depth or accuracy. I am not sure that it makes sense to spend a lot of time further developing this section. For example, the second paragraph refers to scientific recognition as artificially turned into a resource of predetermined scarcity. I am pretty sure that further research could easily yield evidence to back up this statement – e.g. Garfield’s idea of the “core journals” to eliminate the journals one needn’t bother buying or reading, and the apparently de facto assumption that a good journal is one with a high rejection rate. On page 3, first paragraph, 4 citations are given for one statement. A quick glance at the reference list suggests that this may be stretching what the authors of the cited works have said. For example, at face value it seems unlike that reference 4 with a title of “Double-blind review favours increased representation of female authors” actually supports the author’s assertion that “Since peer-trials necessarily involve a degree of confidentiality and secrecy..many errors, biases and conflicts of interest may arise without the possibility of correction”. It seems that the authors of the cited article are making exactly the opposite argument, arguing that semi-open review results in bias. If I was doing a thorough review, I would look up at least a few of the cited works and if the arguments cited are not justified in the cited works I hand the work of reading the works cited and citing appropriately back to the authors.

The arguments presented are provocative and appropriate for initiating an important scholarly discussion. Like any provocative work, the arguments may be relatively stronger for the task of initiating needed discussion but somewhat weak due to lack of counter-argument. For example, the point of Section 1.4 is that “scientific conservatism is placing a brake on the pace of change”. Whether anything is placing a brake on the pace of change in 2017 is, I believe, arguable. However, the authors also do not address the benefits of scientific conservatism here, although the arguments made elsewhere e.g. “The validity of an article is established by a process of open and objective debate by the whole community” are arguments for scientific conservatism (or so I argue). The potential benefits of scientific conservatism are not addressed. For example, one needs to understand this tendency of science to fully appreciate the current consensus on climate change.

Section 2 defines scientific value as validity and importance

There are some interesting ideas here, however the authors conflate methodological soundness with validity. A research study can reflect the very best practices in today’s methodology and present logical conclusions based on existing knowledge while still being incorrect or invalid (lacking external validity) for such reasons as limitations on our collective knowledge. A logical argument based on a premise incorrectly perceived to to be true can lead to logical but incorrect conclusions.

The authors state that “the validity of an article is established by a process of open and objective debate by the whole community”. This is one instance of what I see as overstatement of both current and potential future practice. Only in a very small scholarly community would it be possible for every member of the community to read every article, never mind have an open and objective debate about each article. I think the authors have a valid point here, but direct this at the wrong level. This kind of debate occurs with the big picture paradigmatic issues such as climate change, not at the level of the individual article.

Perceived importance of an article is given along with validity as the other measure for evaluation of an article.  This argument needs work and critique. I agree with the author (and Kuhn) about the tendency towards scientific conservatism, and I think we should be aware of bias in any new system, especially one based on open review. People are likely to perceive articles as more important if they advance work that falls within an existing paradigm or a new one that is gaining traction than truly pioneering work. With open review, I expect that authors with existing high status are more likely to be perceived to be writing important work while new, unknown, female authors or those from minority groups are more likely to have their work perceived as unimportant.

I do not wish to dismiss the idea of importance, rather I would like to suggest that this needs quite a bit of work to define appropriately. For example, if I understand correctly replication of previous experiments is perceived as a lesser contribution than original work. This is a disincentive to replication that seems likely to increase the likelihood of perpetuating error. Assuming this is correct, and we wish to change the situation, what is needed is something like a consensus that replication should be more highly valued, otherwise if we rely on perceived importance this work is likely to continue to be undervalued.

Section 2.2 Assessing validity by open peer review

This section presents some very specific suggestions for a review system. One comment that I have is that this approach reflects a particular style. The idea of embedded reviews likely appeals more to some people than to others. Journals often provide reviewers with a variety of options depending on their preferred style; a written review like this, or go through the article and track changes. The + / – vote system for reviews strikes me as a tool very likely to reflect the personal popularity of reviewers and/or particular viewpoints rather than adding to the quality of reviews. There are advantages and disadvantages to authors being able to select the reviews that they feel are of most value to them. The disadvantage is that authors with a blind spot or conscious bias are free to ignore reviews that a really good editor would force them to address before a work could be published.

Section 3 Benefits of this evaluation system

Here the authors argue that this evaluation system can be transformed into metrics for the purpose of evaluation (number of scholars engaged in peer review, fraction that consider the article is up to scientific standards) and for importance (the number of authors that have curated the article in their self-journal). Like the authors, I think we need to move away from publishing in high impact factor journals as a surrogate of quality. However, I argue against metrics-based evaluation, period. This is a topic that I will be writing about more over the coming months. For now, suffice it to say that quickly moving to new metrics-based evaluation systems appears to me likely to create worse problems than such a move is meant to solve. For example, if we assume that scientific conservatism is a thing and is a problem, isn’t a system where people are evaluated based on the number of people who review one’s work and find it up to standards likely to increase conservatism?

Some strengths of the article:

  •  recognizing the need for change and hopefully kick-starting an important discussion
  • starting with the idea that we scholars can lead the transformation ourselves
  • focus on collaboration rather than competition

To think about from my perspective:

  • researcher time: realism is needed. An article that is reviewed by two or three people who are qualified to judge soundness of method, logic of arguments and clarity of writing should be enough. It isn’t a good use of the time of researchers to have a whole lot of people looking at whether a particular statistical test was appropriate or not.
  •  this is work for scholarly communities, not individuals. The conclusion speaks to the experience of arXiv. arXiv is a service shared by a large community and supported by a partnership of libraries that has staff and hosting support.  
  • the Self-Journals of Science uses the CC-BY license as a default.  Many OA advocates regard this license as the best option for OA, however I argue that this is a major strategic error for the OA movement. My arguments on the overlap between open licensing and open access are complex and can be found in my series Creative Commons and Open Access Critique. To me this is a central issue that the OA movement must deal with, and so I raise it here and continue to avoid participating in services that require me to use this license for my work.

Key take-aways I hope people will get out of this review:

  • forget metrics – don’t come up with a replacement for impact factor, let’s get out of metrics-based evaluation altogether
  • look for good models, like arXiv because communities are complicated. What works?
  • let’s talk – some of us may want immediate radical transformation of scholarly communication, but doing this well is going to take some time, to figure out the issues, come up with potential solutions, let people try stuff and see what works and what doesn’t, and research too
  • be realistic about time and style – researchers have limited time, and people have different preferred styles. New approaches need to take this into account.

For more on this topic, watch for my keynote at the What do rankings tell us about higher education? roundtable at UBC this May. 

      Dramatic Growth of Open Access December 31, 2016

      Download data here


      Arguably the best indicator of the global collaborative growth of open access, whether through archives or publications, is the ongoing impressive growth of what we can access through the Bielefeld Academic Search Engine, which surpassed two major milestones in 2016: over 100 million documents (about 60% open access) and 5,000 content providers. The growth rates (22% for documents, 27% for content providers) are particularly impressive given the high pre-existing content rate. This is amazing success not just for BASE, but for all of us. If you’ve published a thesis through an institutional repository that allows for metadata harvesting, or published an article in a journal that contributes article-level data for metadata harvesting, your contribution is reflected here. This is a meta-level indicator of our global success.

      I’ve added a new metric for medical open access, a keyword search of PubMed for “cancer” for articles with no date limit, last 5 years, last 2 years, and last year, further limited to free fulltext to determine the percentage of items for which fulltext is available. This ranges from 26% overall (no date limit), to 40 – 44% for items published in the last 2 – 5 years, to 32% for articles published in the last year.

      Also added this quarter: OECD iLibrary – with more than 11,000 free books, this one publisher’s OA collection is nearly double the size of the 167 publishers included in the impressivley growing Directory of Open Access Books! arXiv, in addition to an over 10% growth rate last year, inspired the recent development of two similar services, socArXiv and bioRxiv, newly added to facilitate future growth tracking. The DOAJ get-tough inclusion policy and March 2016 major weeding means the DOAJ count for titles, countries and journals searchable at the article level are all down from last year, while articles searchable at the article level through DOAJ continued to show robust growth of 13%. DOAJ’s quarterly growth is back to an impressive rate of just under 3 titles per day. RePEC surpassed a milestone of 2 million downloadable items this year, while Internet Archive surpassed 3 milestones: there are now more than 3 million video and audio recordings, and more than 11 million texts (the number of IA web pages archived is way down, by the billions – such a difference it strikes me as likely due to a glitch in counting, whether before or after). Recently Open Journal Systems announced that OJS is now used by more than 10,000 active journals which <>.

      Kudos and thanks to everyone in the open access movement – every researcher, author, editor, publisher, archive manager, librarian, policy-maker, and activist who is making open access happen. What of 2017? My advice: let’s remember the beautiful vision of the potential unprecedented public good of open access – forged not at a time of peace and certainty, but rather within months of the trauma of 9/11 – repeated below – and keep on making it happen.

      BOAI vision:

      An old tradition and a new technology have converged to make possible an unprecedented public good. The old tradition is the willingness of scientists and scholars to publish the fruits of their research in scholarly journals without payment, for the sake of inquiry and knowledge. The new technology is the internet. The public good they make possible is the world-wide electronic distribution of the peer-reviewed journal literature and completely free and unrestricted access to it by all scientists, scholars, teachers, students, and other curious minds. Removing access barriers to this literature will accelerate research, enrich education, share the learning of the rich with the poor and the poor with the rich, make this literature as useful as it can be, and lay the foundation for uniting humanity in a common intellectual conversation and quest for knowledge.

      Selected numbers and growth by service:

      Directory of Open Access Journals 

      Highlights: in March 2016 DOAJ removed more than 3,000 journals, reflecting a new get-tough inclusion policy. All journals that had not gone through DOAJ’s new application process were removed. As a result, in spite of robust quarter since the removal process, most of DOAJ’s key data are lower at the end of 2016 than at 2015, with the exception of number of articles searchable through DOAJ which grew by 13%.

      • 9,455 journals (down from 10,963 in 2015, a 14% decrease. Note that this quarter DOAJ added 246 journals for a current growth rate of close to 3 titles per day).
      • 6,634 journals searchable at article level (down from 6,780 in 2015, a 2% decrease. Note that this quarter DOAJ increased the number of searchable journals by 217).
      • 2,400,258 articles (up 13% from 2,123,402 at the end of 2015, very impressive given the journal weeding process)
      • 128 countries (down from 136 at the end of 2016)

      Electronic Journals Library

      •  55,562 journals that can be read free-of-charge (up from 51,983 at the end of 2017, a 7% growth rate)

      OECD iLibrary  * (selected data points) (just added, no growth figures)

      • 11,050 e-book titles
      • 5,130 multilingual summaries
      • 5,200 working papers
      • 5 billion data points across 42 databases

        Directory of Open Access Books

        • 5,602 books (up from 3,789 at the end of 2015, a 48% growth rate)
        • 167 publishers (up from 134 at the end of 2014, 33 publishers added, a 25% growth rate)


        3,000 repository milestone!!!

        • 3,285 repositories (up from 2,991 at the end of 2015, a 10% growth rate)

        Registry of Open Access Repositories

        •  4,365 repositories (up from 4,147 at the end of 2015, a 5% growth rate)

        Bielefeld Academic Search Engine 

        100 million document milestone!!!
        5,000 content providers milestone!!!

        • 103,090,961 documents (up from 84.25 million at the end of 2015, a 22% growth rate)
        • 5,023 content sources (up from 3,965 at the end of 2015, a 27% growth rate)


        4 million article milestone!!!

        •  4.1 million articles (up from 3.7 million at the end of 2015, an 11% growth rate)
        • 2,326 journals actively participating in PubMedCentral (up from 2,021 at the end of 2015, a 10% growth rate)
        • 1,720 journals with immediate free access (up from 1,553 at the end of 2015, an 11% growth rate)
        • 1,426 journals with all articles open access (up from 1,331 at the end of 2015, a 7% growth rate)
        • 569 journals with some articles open access (up from 423 at the end of 2015, a 35% growth rate)


          • 1,219,224 preprints (up from 1,105,906 at the end of 2015, a 10% growth rate)

          SocArXiv Preprints (launched December 7, 2016, inspired by arXiv)  **

          • 631 searchable preprints

          (in beta December 31, 2016, inspired by arXiv) ***

          • 7,500 articles (based on “all articles” search, 750 pages X 10 articles / page)


          2 million downloadable items milestone!!!

          • 2,021,534 downloadable items (up from 1,942,541 at the end of 2015, a 13% growth rate)


          • 803 total open access mandate policies (up from 762 at the end of 2015, a 5% growth rate)

          Internet Archive

          3 million milestones for video and audiorecordings!!!
          10 million milestone for texts (now 11 million)!!!

          • 11 million texts (up from 8.8 million at the end of 2015, a 26% growth rate


           * OECD iLibrary statement on free-to-read (from About page):

          All book and journal content is available to all users to read online by clicking the READ icon. Read editions are optimised for browser-enabled mobile devices and can be read online wherever there is an internet connection – desktop computer, tablets or smart phones. They are also shareable and embeddable.
          The site also features content for all users to access and download such as the OECD Factbook, OECD Working Papers, Indicators, and more.
          Subscribers benefit from full access to all content in all available formats.

          ** about SocArXiv (from the Dec. 7, 2016 launch announcement):

          SocArXiv, the open access, open source archive of social science, is officially launching in beta version today. Created in partnership with the Center for Open Science, SocArXiv provides a free, noncommercial service for rapid sharing of academic papers; it is built on the Open Science Framework, a platform for researchers to upload data and code as well as research results

          *** about bioRxiv (from about page):

          bioRxiv (pronounced “bio-archive”) is a free online archive and distribution service for unpublished preprints in the life sciences. It is operated by Cold Spring Harbor Laboratory, a not-for-profit research and educational institution. By posting preprints on bioRxiv, authors are able to make their findings immediately available to the scientific community and receive feedback on draft manuscripts before they are submitted to journals.

          This post is part of the Dramatic Growth of Open Access series.

            Dramatic Growth of Open Access September 30, 2016


            There is plenty to celebrate for this year’s Open Access Week October 24 – 31 everywhere! 

            As of Oct. 6, 2016, a Bielefeld Academic Search Engine (BASE) search includes over 100 million documents! Globally the collections of open access archives are now collectively an order of magnitude larger than the 10 million articles and books claimed by Elsevier for Science Direct. Congratulations to BASE and everyone in the repositories movement that is making this happen!

            In spite of a vigorous weeding process, new get-tough inclusion policy and negative growth in the past year in journal numbers, the Directory of Open Access Journals showed an amazing 11% growth in the past year in articles searchable at the article level – about half a million more articles today than a year ago. This past quarter DOAJ showed a healthy growth rate of 135 titles or added 1.5 titles per day.

            For every journal added by DOAJ in the past quarter, another repository was added to the vetted OpenDOAR collection of repositories.

            The Internet Archive now has more than 3 million audio recordings.

            The Directory of Open Access Books added over 2 thousand titles in the past year for a current total of over 5,000 titles (60% annual growth rate) from 161 publishers (41% annual growth rate in publishers).

            The number of journals actively contributing to PubMedCentral continues to show strong growth in every measure: there are 212 more journal active participants in PMC today than a year ago, a 10% growth rate; 170 more journals provide immediate free access, an 11% growth rate; 113 more journals provide all articles as open access, a 9% growth rate; and the number of journals with some articles open access increased by 123, a 31% growth rate.

            Full data is available for download from here.

            This post is part of the Dramatic Growth of Open Access series. 

            Dramatic Growth of Open Access June 30, 2016

            Highlights this quarter include a new indicator illustrating that 42% of the cancer literature indexed by PubMed is available as free full-text within 3 years of publication; ongoing strong growth in open access archives and their content; milestone of over 10 million free texts for Internet Archive; a mix of negative growth reflecting clean-up at DOAJ and growth in articles searchable at the article level; over 50% annual growth at the Directory of Open Access Books; and concern noted about the apparent ongoing growth of Elsevier and what this might mean for open access.


            New indicator : a search of the PubMed index for “cancer” for all articles and with limits by date of publication demonstrates that 42% of the cancer literature indexed in PubMed published in the last 3 years is available as free fulltext.  17% is available as free fulltext within 30 days of publication, 31% within one year of publication. With no date limits the overall percentage is 26% of the 3.3 million articles on cancer indexed by Pubmed.


            Results of PubMed search for “cancer”
            with limits by date of publication and free fulltext
              # of articles free fulltext % free fulltext
            30 days 19,050 3,206 17%
            60 days 32,562 6,540 20%
            90 days 46,057 10,382 23%
            180 days 85,913 23,421 27%
            last 1 year 162,335 50,499 31%
            last 2 years 323,252 126,867 39%
            last 3 years 475,973 198,505 42%
            no date limit 3,318,957 861,168 26%

            Kudos to Internet Archive for exceeding 10 million free texts!

            Ongoing strong open access archives growth is illustrated by OpenDOAR adding close to 200 repositories over the past year, a 7% growth rate and a total of over 3,000 repositories. The Registry of Open Access Repositories added 269 repositories over the past year, also a 7% annual growth rate for a total of over 4,000 repositories. The Bielefeld Academic Search Engine is now searching over 93 million documents from over 4,000 repositories. With growth of over 18 million documents over the past year (24% annual growth rate), it won’t be long before BASE passes the 100 million milestone. arXiv grew by over 10% over the past year, adding over 100,000 documents for a total of 1.6 million.

            The Directory of Open Access Books grew by over 50% in the past year for a total of close to 5,000 books from more than 150 publishers. 

            In spite of overall negative growth reflecting a major “get-tough” clean-up project, the Directory of Open Access Journals‘ number of articles searchable at the article level which grew by 16% over the past year, over 300,000 more articles for a total of over 2.1 million articles. On May 9, DOAJ removed over 3,000 journals that had not filled out the new application form. Since that date, DOAJ has added 234 titles for a DOAJ growth rate of 4.5 journals per day. Watch for continuing strong growth in the next few quarters as DOAJ has hired a team of international ambassadors. 

            The ongoing dramatic growth of Elsevier 

            The Social Sciences Research Network (SSRN) is still included in the downloadable data.  I would like to note concern about its current and future open access status and commitment, particularly since it was recently bought by Elsevier, features the ad for “free subscriptions to more than 500 partner-sponsored abstracting e-journals [emphasis added]”, (copied below for purposes of academic critique – please contact SSRN for other uses), the SSRN website indicates partnerships with providers of pay-per-view, and the message from chairman Michael Jensen on the Elsevier sale indicates that part of what is behind this is Elsevier’s desire to expand into social sciences.

            In addition to the SSRN buyout, as noted on my research blog Sustaining the Knowledge Commons, Elsevier is now the world’s largest open access publisher as measured by number of fully open access journals.

            Open access may resolve the access problem, however OA per se does not address the increasing commercialization of scholarly journal publishing and increasing market concentration that has been happening since the end of the second world war. The growing presence of large traditional commercial scholarly publishers in open access is something to watch, in particular because ongoing open access is likely not compatible with maximal profit-making.

            As usual the full data is available for download from the DGOA Dataverse:

            This post is part of the Dramatic Growth of Open Access series.

            Canada’s draft new action plan on open government 2016 – 2018

            Following are my comments on Canada’s draft new action plan on open government 2016 – 2018

            Canada’s Draft New Plan on Open Government 2016-2018
            Individual Comments by Dr. Heather Morrison
            Kudos are in order to Canada’s government for global leadership, commitment, and swift moves by our new government to action, notably in the areas of commitment to open access and open data to both academic and government information, commitment to creation of a Chief Science Officer position, restoring the mandatory long form census, forthcoming free and more timely access to Statistics Canada data, and initiating electoral reform (to mention a few moves!). Following are my comments as an expert in the area of information policy, notably open access, intended to help strengthen a solid, ambitious but realistic draft plan. In the spirit of openness and transparency, note that I am a professor at the University of Ottawa’s bilingual School of Information Studies and I see career opportunities for our graduates and research opportunities for me arising from this plan and some of my suggestions.
            Summary of key points
            ·       Reconsider centralization or the “one-stop” approach. Sometimes this is a good idea (one stop search for grants and contributions, single point of access to all geospatial data). However, centralization can also be a bottleneck and even a muzzling device. Decentralization with website and open data development in the hands of departmental experts who understand the information they are working with and how people will want to use it is probably in many instances the most effective means of providing open government information and data. I want my weather information directly from Environment Canada and my tax data directly from Canada Revenue Agency, not indirectly from a central service where staff are not likely to be experts in these areas.
            ·       Consider expanding information services to include reference service (professional service by intermediaries with understanding of information seeking behavior as well as government information), both through government and indirectly through libraries of all types (through advocacy for this role with key partners). This has the potential to provide better service and sometimes reduce cost. For example, in the area of Access to Information, overly broad requests may reflect lack of knowledge of the specific documents or data most likely to address a need. Direct communication with requestors may be the best means to hone requests.
            ·       Beware what I characterize as a blind spot of completely unrestricted re-use which could lead to intended consequences (for example effectiveprivatization of currently free public services). Impose reasonable expectations of behaviour by re-users that is in the public interest, and encourage development along these lines at the global level.  
            ·       Remember the vulnerable. Sometimes the best approach to open government is in-person offices. Open data and data visualization are a boon for those of who can see but a challenge for the visually disabled. Proactively address this challenge rather than waiting for complaints. Consider and consult First Nations peoples before releasing data about resources on their lands or lands that they depend on that could be exploited to their detriment.
            ·       Build in protection against the inevitable temptations of power and the understandable human tendency to want to look good. Access to Information – an effective means to demand information that the government does not choose to make open – will always be needed for really open government. I also recommend an arms-length approach to developing data visualization services, because it is easy to develop services that help people to see what we want them to see; our truth rather than the truth.
            ·       Considerable research is needed on how to go about meaningfully engaging a whole population in open dialogue and policy-making. This particular potential of open government will take an extended period of time for full development. This should be factored into assessment of progress.
            ·       Immediately apply principles and best practices of open dialogue and policy-making in trade treaty negotiations, beginning with the Trans Pacific Partnership.
            ·       Expand on corporate accountability through a review of legislation on corporations and consultations with the private sector, academics and other stakeholders to understand barriers to triple bottom line accounting (finance, people and environment) and propose solutions.
            Detailed comments
            Detailed comments are presented below in two sections, Overarching comments and specific comments on the draft plan.
            Overarching comments
            To centralize or not to centralize?
            The draft plan refers in several places to centralization (single portal, one-stop etc.). I recommend re-thinking of the benefits of centralization versus decentralization. Sometimes, centralization can result in streamlining of access for the citizen; commitment 11, one-stop access to data on grants and contributions is a good example of this.  However, centralization can also be a bottleneck or even a muzzling device. Weather information is both interesting and important to the public. To have the best information on whether a potentially dangerous storm is headed in my direction, I look to the experts at Environment Canada to post what they know as soon as they possibly can. Sending information to a central service would simply create delays and likely impede good decision-making by Canadians. Governments create different departments for good reasons. The type of information provided and how it is best structured to be understood by the public will vary with the type of information. When it’s time to reconcile my taxes I want a website that is under the control of the best experts in taxation and web development for this type of information. I note below particular sections of the plan where I see centralization as beneficial or problematic.
            What’s missing?
            Reference and information literacy services are needed (directly through government and indirectly through libraries) and would reduce in some cases reduce the workload.
            As a professor in the area of information studies, former practicing professional librarian and researcher in the areas of open access, open government, and access to information, I have had many discussions with students, experts, and government staffers who provide services such as responding to ATI requests about the challenges and opportunities. In my professional opinion, the Government of Canada could provide better service, sometimes at lower cost through a kind of service akin to the tradition of library reference services. For example, one of the reasons ATI requests can seem to be “frivolous and vexatious” appears to be that people request very large amounts of information because they do not have sufficient understanding of government operations to know what to ask for. Having a professional serving in an intermediary role who understands both information seeking behaviour and the kind of information that is held by government would likely be more efficient in many cases.
            Helping people find the information they need (reference services) and providing education on how to understand the need for information, find, evaluate and effectively use it (information literacy), is a traditional role of public, school, corporate and academic libraries.
            Recommendation: work with Library and Archives Canada and open government representatives at all levels (municipal, provincial, global) to advocate for an emerging role for libraries of all types in the areas of open government and incorporate professional information services within government departments.
            Openness and transparency in trade treaty negotiations
            Moving towards openness and transparency in government while at the same time failing to engage with citizens on trade agreements that will impact our jobs, communities, and businesses, is moving in opposite directions at the same time. Recommendation: extend open dialogue to trade treaty negotiations, beginning with the Trans Pacific Partnership.
            Open government and access to government services for people with disabilities
            Open data and the potential for data visualization offer tremendous potential for the advancement of Canadian society and should be embraced. However, the formats also create new challenges for people with disabilities such as print disabilities. Recommendation: address these challenges proactively through working with groups representing disabled communities and show global leadership in advocating for technological solutions to facilitate equitable open government.
            Consider restrictions on access to data to avoid harm to vulnerable groups
            The plan appropriately recognizes the need to consider the protection of personal privacy in the release of open data. I recommend that potential harm to vulnerable groups be another consideration in deciding whether data should be released. For example, data about valuable exploitable resources on lands our First Nations peoples own or depend on should not be released without consultation with the peoples who would be affected.
            Specific comments on the draft plan
            Introduction – Towards an Open and Transparent Government
            Re third bullet: “a review of the Access to Information Act, and efforts to accelerate and expand initiatives to help Canadians easily access and use open data, by the President of the Treasury Board working with the ministers of Justice and Democratic Institutions”
            Suggestion: split into 2 bullet points to avoid confusion because Access to Information and open data initiatives are two very different types of activities.

            The Open Government Partnership
            Re: the fifth grand challenge, “Increasing corporate accountability”: measures that address corporate responsibility on issues such as the environment, anti-corruption, consumer protection, and community engagement.
            Comment: addressing this challenge would be a golden opportunity to begin to address the limitations of the corporate sector’s single bottom line focus on profit, financially defined. This draft plan is weak in this sector and I would like to see expansion of commitments in this area. Some suggestions:
            ·       Review legislation on corporations and other businesses to recognize triple bottom line accounting (financial, social, environment)
            ·       Develop a consultation process with citizens, civil society organizations, academics and business to uncover challenges to corporate accountability and draft solutions

            IV. A. Open by Default
            Re: Third paragraph, “Being “open by default” also means allowing Canadians to more easily access government services through a single online window [emphasis added]”.
            Recommendation: change this sentence to “Being “open by default” also means allowing Canadians to more easily access government services through effective access mechanisms designed to facilitate accountability on service delivery [emphasis added]”.
            Comments: see “to centralize or not to centralize” above.

            Commitment 1: Enhance Access to Information
            It is good to see a commitment to updating the Access to Information Act. Open government will never replace the need for a mechanism for citizens to effectively demand access to information. Government by definition holds power, and power inevitably will attract those who wish to pursue personal gain through corruption. Also, mistakes and poor decisions or even good decisions that did not produce the expected results cannot always be avoided. There will always be a temptation for government staff as well as elected representatives to open or close, highlight or suppress information based on whether it makes the government look good. If you don’t want to release a piece of information it’s all too easy to perceive a request for the information as “frivolous and vexatious”. An important strength of the action plan is “giving the Information Commissioner the power to order the release of government information”.
            Re first bullet: “Making government data and information open by default, in formats that are modern and easy to use;”
            Suggestion: add a second and third bullet to address the ongoing need for ATI and to streamline the process through the provision of reference services:
            ·       Providing easy-to-use, cost-free mechanisms for requesting any information that is not open by default;
            ·       Develop professional intermediary services to help requestors identify with precision the information required
            Comment: re the second suggested bullet, see the section “reference and information services” above.

            Commitment 2: Streamline Requests for Personal Information
            Re: How it will be done – line 2: “a simple, central website [emphasis added] where Canadians can submit requests to any government institution”.
            Suggest change to: “a simple, central website where Canadians can submit requests to any government institution to supplement requesting services that are most efficiently handled by the collecting department”.
            Comment: see the section “to centralize or not to centralize?” above

            Commitment 3: Expand and Improve Open Data
            Re: 5th milestone: “Improve Canadians’ access to data and information proactively disclosed by departments and agencies through a single, common online search tool[emphasis added]”
            Suggest change to “Improve Canadians’ access to data and information proactively disclosed by departments and agencies through departmental websites as well as a single, common online search tool”
            Comment: see the section on “to centralize or not to centralize” above.

            Commitment 4: Provide and Preserve Open Information
            Re: Milestone 4: “Update Library and Archives Canada’s online archive of the Government of Canada’s web presence to ensure Canadians’ long-term access to federal web content”.
            Recommendation – add a Milestone: consult with academic experts and Library and Archives Canada to develop a plan, recommendation and funding analysis to capture Canadian content on the web.
            Comment: I applaud the addition of this milestone, but would note that we need to capture Canadian content on the web in general, not just federal web content. Currently, some of this content is voluntarily captured by Internet Archive, however I think Canadians have a duty to take this on ourselves, for profound social, legal and cultural reasons. Material that until recently was produced in print and often archived and preserved by libraries and archives is increasingly available only online and risks being lost, sometimes after only a short period of time.

            Commitment 7: Embed Transparency Requirements in the Federal Service Strategy
            Re first Milestone “Development a Government and Canada Clients-First Service Strategy that aims to create a single online window [emphasis added] for all government services”.
            Suggest change to: Development a Government and Canada Clients-First Service Strategy that aims to create a efficient and effective online access [emphasis added] for all government services through a departmental or centralized online window, whichever is most effective for citizens”.
            Comments: see to centralize or not to centralize above.

            Commitment 8: Enhance Access to Culture & Heritage Collections
            Re: “The Government of Canada will expand collaboration with its provincial, territorial, and municipal partners and key stakeholders to develop a searchable National Inventory of Cultural and Heritage Artefacts to improve access across museum collections”.
            Comment / question: how does this relate to Library and Archives Canada’s Building a Canadian National Heritage Digitization Strategy?

            B. Fiscal Transparency
            Re: second paragraph, “…the government will provide Canadians [emphasis added] with the tools they need to visualize spending data and compare fiscal information across departments, between locations, and over time”.
            Suggested change to “…the government will develop an arms-length service to provide Canadians with the tools they need to visualize spending data and compare fiscal information across departments, between locations, and over time and encourage all members of the open government partnership to do likewise”.
            Comment: it is fairly easy for an interested party to set up visualization tools to “help” people see things like financial data from a particular perspective. This can be deliberate or reflect unconscious biases. For example, to help people understand tax data, one can choose from a number of different potential comparison points. The tax freedom date approach showing how long it takes an average Canadian to work to pay taxes before they get to keep money is a good choice for people ideologically opposed to taxation and seeking tax breaks. In contrast, those of us who think public health care is the right way to go both for social and financial reasons tend to see data demonstrating the lower per-capita health spending in Canada as compared to countries with private health care as an obvious and important way of demonstrating the truth. A government that has succeeded in lowering corporate taxes by two-thirds and does not want public critique creeping into public budget discussions might be tempted to present budget data showing how little is gained by a small to medium increase in the existing corporate tax rate and avoid historical comparisons. A government determined to reserve the corporate tax rate cuts would likely emphasize historical comparisons.

            Commitment 10: Increase Transparency of Budget Data and Economic and Fiscal Analysis
            Re: “The Government of Canada will provide access to the datasets used in the Federal Budget each year in near real time [emphasis added]”.
            Suggested change (addition) to: “The Government of Canada will provide access to the datasets used in the Federal Budget each year in near real time starting with Budget 2017 and will explore the feasibility of providing as many of these datasets as possible in advance of the release of the budget.
            Comment: near real time datasets to help Canadians understand the budget would be a major leap forward, however in the long term for Canadians to have meaningful input into the budget process and parliamentarians to have full information for decision-making purposes, we have to have access to the datasets before the Budget is developed. One thought is that after Budget 2017 the datasets identified for release could be prioritized for timely open data release after that point in time.

            Commitment 11: Increase Transparency of Grants and Contributions Funding
            Re: “one stop access”: in this instance centralized access makes a lot of sense!

            C. Innovation, Prosperity, and Sustainable Development
            Re: “Making government data and information openly available to Canadians without restrictions on reuse [emphasis added]”…
            Suggested change to: “Making government data and information openly available with minimal restrictions on reuse and the expectation of reuse in the spirit of the public good…”
            Comments: although the spirit of “no restrictions” is one that I agree with, a major positive change, and internationally embraced by open government advocates as consensus, this is an area where in my professional opinion too open an approach invites problems as well as benefits for the social good. For example, as contributors to the Social Sciences Research Network (SSRN) recently discovered, their free sharing of their work in what they thought of as an open access archive enabled not only open access but also the sale of SSRN to the world’s largest commercial scholarly publisher, Elsevier, a corporation that benefits from a profit rate of about $1 billion US a year (39%) profit based primarily on toll access and that has incentive to create new locked-down services. I believe this is an early indication of a potential danger of open data that is too open. For example, in the case of government data, too open an approach to data release could result in effective privatization of public services. “Without restrictions on reuse” is so broad that it can include charging for services, paying Internet service providers to have for-pay services prioritized over free public services, making the latter less useful, and using profits to lobby against funding for free public services that profitable commercial re-users are likely to see as competition.
            Open data should be open to anyone, not just Canadians. In order to have the full benefit of open access to government data we need to be able to use data from any jurisdiction and compare data across jurisdictions.

            C. Innovation, Prosperity, and Sustainable Development
            Re – second paragraph: “the Government of Canada will be building strategic partnerships with other governments at the provincial, territorial, and municipal level, to support the development of common standards and principles for open data”.
            Comment: good idea, but add the global level; this will be necessary to create innovations that work across jurisdiction and allow cross-jurisdictional comparison.

            Commitment 14: Increase Openness of Federal Science Activities (Open Science)
            Comments: kudos, this is great to see!!! Note that the granting councils already have policies on open access to research outputs and digital data management strategies. With respect to open access to documents, it might be worth looking at the tri-agency policy. With respect to digital data management strategies, there are important differences between government data, collected by the government for purposes of public policy, typically collected by government staff in the course of their employment and originally owned and controlled by the government, and academic research data which frequently involves third parties such as research subjects and third party organizations (e.g. police data is important to criminologists, business data to business researchers). Here I see many more issues arising from opening of data and I recommend separate treatment of academic research and government data.

            Commitment 15: Stimulate Innovation through Canada’s Open Data Exchange (ODX)
            This is a great initiative, but this is where building in the concept of free reuse in the context of commitment to the public good (see C above) is important to avoid the potential privatization of free public services.

            Commitment 20: Enable Open Dialogue and Open Policy Making
            Re: Milestone 1 “Promote common principles for Open Dialogue and common practices across the Government of Canada to enable the use of new methods for consulting and engaging Canadians”.
            Comments: I think that this is a great idea, but the potential of Web 2.0 to facilitate open dialogue and open policy making is in its infancy. Consider that we are still working towards universal basic literacy centuries after the invention of the printing press. I think that considerable research into how to use the web for open dialogue and policy making is needed, and how to engage citizens who may not have access to the web or are otherwise unlikely to use this means of participation. Perhaps this could be one of the upcoming challenge areas for the granting councils? (Disclosure: if this happens I might apply for such a grant). 

            Commitment 22: Engage Canadians to Improve Key Canada Revenue Agency Services
            Re: 3rd milestone: “Engage with indigenous Canadians to better understand the issues, root causes, and data gaps that may be preventing eligible individuals from accessing benefits.”
            Recommendation: add a strong, specific commitment to increase the number of indigenous Canadians receiving benefits or perhaps a specific type of benefit to which they are entitled.
            In conclusion, please consider these detailed comments as input intended to improve a solid plan ambitious plan by a new government that already deserves kudos for swift action in a number of important areas. Thank you for the opportunity to provide these comments, and to be actively engaged in the preceding in-person and online consultation processes.
            Respectfully submitted,
            Dr. Heather Morrison
            Assistant Professor
            École des sciences de l’information / School of Information Studies
            University of Ottawa
            The Imaginary Journal of Poetic Economics
            Sustaining the Knowledge Commons
            Heather dot Morrison at
            June 23, 2016

            Dramatic Growth of Open Access March 31, 2016


            There are now 150 publishers of peer-reviewed open access books listed in the Directory of Open Access Books, publishing more than 4,400 open access books. 620 books were published in this quarter alone, a 16% increase in just this quarter. The Directory of Open Access Journals has been adding titles at a net rate of 6 titles per day, 540 journals added this quarter for a total of over 11,000 journals. This is the highest DOAJ growth rate since this series started!

            Bielefeld Academic Search Engine repositories collectively added more than 4.7 million documents this quarter for a total of just under 89 million documents.

            SCOAP3 nearly doubled in size this past year (87% annual growth) for a total of 4,690 documents. arXiv grew by over 107,000 documents to over 1.1 million documents during the same time frame. 

            Internet Archive is likely to be featured in the next issue as it is currently edging towards a milestone of 10 million free texts.

            The number of journals actively participating in PubMedCentral, making all content immediately freely accessible, and making all content open access, continues to grow. Meanwhile at PubMed a transition in indexing practice (from manual to automatic) means that a search for NIH-funded articles in the last 90 days significantly underreports results (1,402 NIH funded articles in the past 90 days compared with a range of 7,846 – 19,790 with a 90-day search limit for NIH funded article since 2008). Without the indexing, it is not possible to determine the percentage of full text. Here’s hoping the automated indexing process results in a catch-up soon; it doesn’t matter very much if the statistics for this series fall a bit behind, but people rely on this indexing to search for medical information.

            The Electronic Journals Library added 3,612 journals that can be read free-of-charge in the past year, for a total of 52,000 journals, a 7% growth rate.

            This post is part of the Dramatic Growth of Open Access series. Open data can be downloaded from the Dramatic Growth of Open Access dataverse.

            Editorial: open access, copyright and licensing: basics for open access publishers.

            Just published (February 2016) in the open access Journal of Orthopaedic Case Reports at the invitation of Editor-In-Chief Dr. Ashok Shyam: Editorial: open access, copyright and licensing: basics for open access publishers. Journal of Orthopaedic Case Reports 6:1 p. 1-2. DOI: 10.13107/jocr.2250-0685.360

            This post is part of the Open Access and Creative Commons critique series. 

            Dramatic Growth of Open Access December 2015


            After a year or so of slower growth at DOAJ to accommodate back-end technical work and a new get-tough policy on journal inclusion, robust DOAJ growth is back on track. In the last quarter of 2015, DOAJ added a total of 384 titles or more than 4 titles per day for a year-end total of 10,963 journals. The number of articles searchable at the article level grew by over 300,000 in 2015 for a year-end total of over 2.1 million. The Bielefeld Academic Search Engine figures demonstrate the overall growth of (mostly) open access repositories, adding more than 15 million documents in 2015 for a total of more than 84 million and adding 671 content providers for a total of just under 4 thousand content providers. Both document growth and content provider growth at BASE reflects greater than 20% growth for 2015, a particularly impressive number given that percentage growth tends to favour newer, smaller initiatives such as the SCOAP3 repository which had the highest growth by percentage in 2015, more than doubling to over 8,000 articles in 2015. Although not all the documents available via a BASE search are open access, the more than 3.7 million items now available for free from PubMedCentral alone is just one indication of robust growth in open access repositories. The Internet Archive now has more than 8.8 million texts. Perhaps even more impressive is that over 8 million of the texts made available by the Internet Archive and Open Library are fully accessible and in the public domain! Following are a few charts to illustrate the ongoing amazing growth of open access. To sum up, only one resolution is recommended for all the people behind the thousands of open access journals, repositories and other services for 2016: keep up the good work!

            Open data is available through the Dramatic Growth of Open Access dataverse. For previous posts see the Dramatic Growth of Open Access series.

            Top 10 by percentage growth

            2014 2015 Annual growth (numeric) Annual growth (percentage)
            SCOAP3 articles 4,329 8,934 4,605 106%
            DOAB publishers 79 134 55 70%
            DOAB books 2,482 3,789 1,307 53%
            Highwire Completely Free Sites 113 160 47 42%
            PMC journals some articles OA 338 423 85 25%
            BASE documents 68,575,068 84,250,153 15,675,085 23%
            Internet Archive Audio Recordings 2,224,696 2,712,703 488,007 22%
            PMC journals selected articles OA 2,897 3,499 602 21%
            BASE content providers 3,294 3,965 671 20%
            Internet Archive Texts 7,320,065 8,756,735 1,436,670 20%

            Dramatic Growth of Open Access June 30, 2015

            This issue of the Dramatic Growth of Open Access highlights and celebrates samples of the many small milestones illustrating the slow and steady increase in open access (dramatic does not necessarily mean fast!).

            There are now more than 2,000 journals actively participating in PubMedCentral. Over the past year, this number grew by 178 – that’s close to one more new entire journal actively contributing content to PMC every business day.

            PMC now has over 3.5 million items. This means that about 15% of all the 24 million items cited in PMC (regardless of date of publication) have free fulltext available linked from PubMed.

            In the last 7 years, the number of NIH funded articles indexed in PubMed (again regardless of date of publication) available for free grew from 86 thousand to over 600 thousand or from 34% to 71%.

            Other small milestones: there are now over 100 publishers of open access scholarly books listed in the Directory of Open Access Books; the Social Sciences Research Network now includes over half a million full text papers; the Registry of Open Access Repositories now lists over 4,000 repositories; and the Bielefeld Academic Search Engine now has more than 75 million documents. Congratulations and thanks to everyone who is doing all the behind-the-scenes work that results in this dramatic increase in access to our knowledge (whether your initiative is highlighted this particular issue or not). To download the data go to the DGOA dataverse.

            Selected data

            Directory of Open Access Journals is going through a clean-up project; the number of journals listed decreased by 45 this semester (over the past year growth of 471 titles). Journals and articles searchable by article both grew this quarter.

            The Directory of Open Access Books lists 3,197 titles from 107 publishers; over 50% annual growth for both numbers.

            The Electronic Journals Library added 801 journals that can be read free-of-charge for a total approaching 50,000 titles.

            The Bielefeld Academic Search Engine added more than 3.6 million documents for a total over over 75 million documents.

            This quarter PubMedCentral added the following (journal rather than article data). A key point is that increases are happening consistently in every category.

            • 33 journals actively participating in PMC (total over 2,000)
            • 23 journals with immediate free access (total 1,468)
            • 24 journals with all articles open access (total 1,260)
            • 46 journals that deposit ALL content in PMC (total 1,683)
            • 9 more journals that deposit NIH-funded content only (total 310)
            • 268 journals that deposit selected content in PMC (total 3,246)

            arXiv added over 25,000 publications and now has more than a million. 

            RePEC added over 64 thousand downloadable items for a total of over 1.6 million. The Logec service has lots of great stats (downloads, content by type and by date); highly recommended for anyone looking for more detail in this area.

            Social Sciences Research Network added close to 13 thousand fulltextpapers for a total of more than half a million.

            Internet Archive added:

            • 100,000 movies for a total of over 2 million
            • 4,000 concerts for a total of 153 thousand
            • 100,000 audio recordings for a total of over 2.5 million
            • 300,000 texts for a total of over 8 millio

            This post is part of the Dramatic Growth of Open Access series. Note that the dataverse has been cleaned up a little to make it easier to find the current file.

            ?2015 by Heather Morrison. Copying is an act of love. Please copy. (from Copyheart).

            New terms and conditions for IJPE, or farewell to Creative Commons

            As of June 2, 2015, these are the terms and conditions for this blog:
            All Rights Reserved except as indicated otherwise. Open sharing is something that I strongly believe in, and so I would like to encourage others to use my own work in noncommercial ways. Please note that when I have copied the works of other people, the copyright belongs to them, not me; I have no rights to grant to you. If you would like to copy my work, please go ahead and do so, but be sure to indicate that the portion of my work you have copied is under my copyright and attribute me and this blog:

            © Heather Morrison, The Imaginary Journal of Poetic Economics [insert URL to post]. All Rights Reserved.

            I request that you let me know what you have done (a comment on this post is fine if you don’t have my e-mail; if you’re doing this just to communicate and don’t want your comment made public, just let me know). You don’t have to ask my permission first, but I would like to know if people are interested in re-using my work, and if so how (this is topic I am interested in), so I appreciate it if people do ask.

            Note that you may have rights under fair dealing or fair use that go beyond the permissions I grant here. I encourage you to make full use of your fair dealing / fair use rights. Canada has a good fair dealing regime at the moment thanks to a series of 2012 Supreme Court decisions in favour of fair dealings. I strongly support the fair dealing rights as outlined by the Canadian Association of University Teachers.  If your country does not have fair use / fair dealing, advocacy for these rights would be a good idea. Note that when I have used the works of others in this blog, this is almost always making use of my fair dealing rights, e.g. to copy the portions of works of others in order to critique.

            If you use CC licenses, you should note that when using the works of others you should check for license compatibility, and alert readers to the rights of third parties. Even when one CC licensed works is included in a second work with what appears to be exactly the same license, the Licensor (generally the copyright holder) for the upstream work is different and hence there are actually two different licenses (for example, the attribution and moral rights of the copied work remain with the original Licensor).

            This is important to understand to minimize your legal risk in copying the work of others. More than 99% of my work has never been licensed for blanket downstream commercial uses, for example. If people use my work in their own works that are CC licensed without the NC element, they risk giving the impression that the copied work is available to others for commercial use. If someone downstream takes advantage of this commercial downstream use that I did not authorize and I decide to take legal action, the downstream user will probably drag the person or organization using an inappropriate CC license into court. This is appropriate because if your site or work is telling others that a work is available for commercial use downstream, then the downstream commercial user is acting in good faith and it is in fact you who are at fault.  I think the odds are very remote that I’d ever take anyone to court over a copyright claim; rather, I want to alert well-intentioned people to the risks that they are taking when including third party works in other works with broad liberal licenses.

            Update June 3: in response to an anonymous question, in case this is relevant for anyone else:  if you are preparing a court case and believe that anything in this blog can be useful to support your case, of course you can do so. I appreciate your letting me know, but you don’t have to ask permission. This is the kind of use that either is, or ought to be, covered by fair use / fair dealing. You have a right to whatever information can help you in a court case. You should indicate the copyright and where you got the information from.  This is more important in terms of presenting your case in the best possible light than protecting my copyright. If you present this work as expert evidence, you need to document where you got the information from, and why you think the author is an expert in this field. It might be helpful to refer to my work web page in this context. Whether your court case is intended to support a commercial argument for you is not relevant. The primary meaning of commercial rights with respect to copyright is selling the work. Ideas are not covered by copyright; for this reason, using the ideas in a copyrighted work does require commercial rights permissions.

            From 2004 until June 1, 2015, this blog, or to be more accurate, my own work on this blog was licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-ShareAlike 2.5 Canada License. If you copied work during this time frame, this license cannot be revoked, however from June 2, 2015 on this blog is no longer licensed under CC. This includes works published previously if you are reading or copying after June 2nd. For those who did copy before this date, I have copied the human readable terms below for your convenience.

            Why the change?

            Here are my experiences with more than a decade of encouraging blanket re-use:

            • one instance of plagiarism (a chart copied from my blog without permission), obviously not intentional and corrected through education
            • one instance of a work copied from my blog to a venue that I want nothing to do with, with inaccurate and insulting attribution (modified somewhat with education)
            • one instance of friendly re-use of a work by a friend, technically illegal since it was a different license and I’m pretty sure my friend was just making a point about re-use. Nice, but not a good use of the time of my friend who is a brilliant scholar and has better things to do.
            • one person wanted to use one of my charts in a powerpoint, but the web version is not sufficient so had to request a higher quality image anyways
            • if there have been uses that would have convinced me this was a good idea, I don’t know about them; that’s a problem with blanket downstream rights for whoever

            As a junior scholar, it is helpful to me to be able to prove that others consider my work worthwhile. That’s why I would like you to tell me if you re-use your work; this is for my tenure dossier. 
             Creative Commons licensing now includes instructions on what is and isn’t a free culture license. Apparently my choices are not free culture. This is technique some call deprecation (intended to push people towards the free culture licenses) that I think is more accurately called bullying or insulting.  This is one of the reasons I stopped voluntarily using CC licenses for new works some time ago.

            Creative Commons has done some awesome work, and I still think it’s great to have an option to indicate we want to share rather than automatic copyright. However, I am concerned that this approach actually encourages permissions culture, asking people to think about everything that we do as IP. My current thinking is that it would be better to advocate for strong fair use / fair dealing rights everywhere, push for shorter not longer copyright terms and eliminate automatic copyright. I might be back someday CC if I sense an atmosphere a bit more tolerant of the different choices about licensing people choose to make.

            CC-BY-NC-SA terms for people who copied portions of my own works on or before June 1, 2105 follow. Note that where I have copied the works of others, the copyright remains theirs, not mine.

            You are free to:

            • Adapt — remix, transform, and build upon the material
            • The licensor cannot revoke these freedoms as long as you follow the license terms.

            Under the following terms:

            • AttributionYou must give appropriate credit, provide a link to the license, and indicate if changes were made. You may do so in any reasonable manner, but not in any way that suggests the licensor endorses you or your use.
            • Non-Commercial — You may not use the material for commercial purposes.
            • ShareAlike — If you remix, transform, or build upon the material, you must distribute your contributions under the same license as the original.
            • No additional restrictions — You may not apply legal terms or technological measures that legally restrict others from doing anything the license permits.


            • You do not have to comply with the license for elements of the material in the public domain or where your use is permitted by an applicable exception or limitation.
            • No warranties are given. The license may not give you all of the permissions necessary for your intended use. For example, other rights such as publicity, privacy, or moral rights may limit how you use the material.