"In the face of the alarming price increases of information resources, the question naturally arises, How much influence should the market wield? Clearly the elimination of most competitors and the centralization of power by a small group of publishing giants encourages price-fixing and correlates with the stratospheric rise in library subscriptions in recent decades. This underscores the need for open access to serve as a countervailing force in scholarly communications against the commercial plundering of our library budgets…. The open access movement opens up a space where the scholarly community can organize together to assert their vision of a system in which researchers are free to share and reuse knowledge. In fact, this type of organizing and advocacy is essential if libraries are to not only reassert control over their collections but also support liberal education—especially at non-elite institutions or in developing countries…. Thus, despite the often grim fiscal constraints libraries now face, online collaborative technologies and open access offer librarians an unheralded opportunity to create a more inclusive scholarly community…."
"This quarter a number of initiatives have met or exceeded some interesting milestones. DOAJ is now over 7,000 journals, and still adding more than 4 titles per day. The Electronic Journals Library now lists more than 30,000 titles that are freely available. OpenDOAR now lists more than 2,000 repositories, and the BASE search engine searches more than 31 million documents in repositories. ROARMAP now lists a total of 300 open access mandate policies. Kudos to PMC for clearly posting pertinent data right on their website, and for growing the number of journals making all articles available OA by 19 to a new total of 635 – and for growing free fulltext at the rate of one per minute! Following are links to quick reference and full data versions, rationale and method, items of interest from this quarter, and noteworthy data from this quarter…."
"The Electronic Publishing Trust* is pleased to announce that it is launching an annual award for individuals in developing and transition countries** who have made significant advances to the cause of open access and the free exchange of research findings. Nominations are sought for the first such award. Individuals or organisations may nominate themselves or others….Nominations should be received by 30th November 2011…."
"Drug companies are learning how to share. In a bid to save both time and money, some of the industry’s biggest names are experimenting with new ways to pool early-stage research, effectively taking a leaf out of the “open-source” manual that gave the world Linux software.
If it takes off, the approach could break the mould of current drug research and speed the development of tomorrow’s life-saving medicines for diseases from cancer to autism.
At the University of Oxford on Wednesday, two more companies – Pfizer and Eli Lilly – signed up for the first phase of the concept by joining existing backers GlaxoSmithKline and Novartis in an unusual public-private research partnership.
As supporters of the international Structural Genomics Consortium (SGC), the rivals give cash and scientific resources for work into the three-dimensional structure of proteins – important for drug discovery – even though all the findings are made available to scientists worldwide without restriction.
In all, the SGC has secured $49 million in new funding.Next year, a far more ambitious scheme is slated to take cooperation to another level by promoting openaccess, patent-free research right up to mid-stage “proof of concept” clinical trials, known as Phase II…."
"The Digital Public Library of America (DPLA) Steering Committee* has invited the creators of the following submissions to the DPLA Beta Sprint, an open call for code and concepts defining how the DPLA might operate, to present at the public plenary meeting taking place on October 21, 2011 in Washington, DC: …The six selected projects were invited on the basis of recommendations made by an independent review panel composed of public and research librarians and experts in the fields of library science and information management. The panel met in Cambridge, MA on September 18, 2011 to discuss the 38 final Beta Sprint submissions…."
"The U-M Library continues to operate its nascent Orphan Works Project “because we remain as certain as ever that our proposed uses of orphan works are lawful and important to the future of scholarship and the libraries that support it.”
That’s the position of University Librarian and Dean of Libraries Paul Courant, who also says that, contrary to some erroneous reports, the library is continuing its digitization efforts along with improving the orphan works identification process. “We have not changed our plans or activities in any way as a result of the Authors Guild lawsuit,” says Courant…."
"Let me make one thing clear from the beginning: it was the ACM’s choice to remove my publication from their workshop proceedings. I did nothing to stop them. In fact, by waiving my copyright, I made it extraordinarily easy for them to include my work in their proceedings if they wanted….In today’s world, transferring copyright is problematic for researchers like me. We want our papers as widely read as possible in order for them to be as influential as possible. Historically, the best way to do this was to have the paper published, because this would mean that copies of our work would end up getting disseminated to university libraries around the world. Publishing is not free, but in lieu of payment for publishing, we would transfer our copyright to the publisher. However, in today’s world the best way to have my paper widely read is to submit it to an online repository, such as the arXiv, where anyone with internet access can get instant access to my work.
So as per my copyright policy, I uploaded my final version of my paper to the arXiv under a public domain dedication…. I always amend the copyright transfer agreement to make a note that I have already published my work under a public domain dedication and creative commons license and I am only transferring copyright to the extend possible (which I believe amounts to nothing). After mailing or faxing the amended copyright transfer agreement to the publisher, no publisher has yet refused to publish my work. They publish it after copy editing it, and stamp their own copyright on it. I find their copyright claim dubious; but I have no incentive to pursue the issue. With the ACM things are a little different…."
"The 1,400 delegates attending the 6th World Congress of Education International in July unanimously passed a resolution introduced by CAUT [Canadian Association of University Teachers] calling for greater balance in global copyright rules….“By supporting this motion, you will make it clear our priority is to ensure all students, teachers and researchers across all sectors of education and in all parts of the world have better access to the learning materials they need and deserve,” [CAUT President Wayne Peters] also told delegates. The resolution was seconded by the National Association of Graduate Teachers (NAGRAT) in Ghana….“In Ghana, the time to complete a PhD is rising mainly because students don’t have access to the library resources and research materials they need,” said [NAGRAT President Christian Addai-Poku]. “Libraries can’t afford books and journals and digital content on the Internet is increasingly locked up.” The CAUT resolution calls on EI [Education International] to advocate at the international level for a more balanced approach to copyright rules, one that respects the rights of owners but allows exemptions for non-commercial educational and research purposes."