This is the big reason why we don’t own ebooks

Whenever you purchase an ebooks from a major retailer, you do not own it, instead you are licensing it. If a retailer goes bankrupt or shutterers their ebook unit, customers lose access to all of the titles they have bought….

Now, companies could probably educate consumers about this reality. But they don’t. Probably because no one wants to click a button that says “license now” or “rent until rights transfer to a new publisher.” Instead, they bury this information in Terms of Service agreement, which, it is well documented, not very many people read….”

University Journals – innovative academic publishing

The University Journals offers an alternative to the current journal ecosystem, Linked to university repositories, University Journals publish reviewed articles, data and other academic works on an accredited open access platform.

The University Journals platform is owned by the university community and offers Open Access journal publications to researchers affiliated to its university partners.

University Journals is a joint initiative from 14 international European universities. Initial development is funded by the PICA foundation and the University of Amsterdam.

Home — ETC Press

The ETC Press was founded in 2005 under the direction of Dr. Drew Davidson, the Director of Carnegie Mellon University’s Entertainment Technology Center (ETC), as an open access, digital-first publishing house.

What does all that mean?

The ETC Press publishes three types of work:peer-reviewed work (research-based books, textbooks, academic journals, conference proceedings), general audience work (trade nonfiction, singles, Well Played singles), and research and white papers….

Authors retain ownership of their intellectual property. We release all of our books, journals, and proceedings under one of two Creative Commons licenses….”

German Publishing Giant Claims Blocking Ads Is Copyright Infringement, In Yet Another Lawsuit Against The Industry Leader | Techdirt

Of course, big publishers don’t let little things like losing court cases at every level of the legal system stop them from pursuing their attack. As the Heise Online site explains (original in German), Axel Springer is suing Eyeo yet again, this time for alleged copyright infringement (via Google Translate):

“Advertising blockers change the programming code of websites and thus directly access the legally protected offerings of publishers,” explains Claas-Hendrik Soehring, Head of Media Law at Axel Springer. “In the long run, they will not only damage a central financing basis for digital journalism but will also jeopardize open access to opinion-forming information on the Internet “

As Eyeo’s company spokesperson pointed out to Heise Online, this claim is ridiculous. Adblocking software operates within a person’s browser; it simply changes what appears on the screen by omitting the ads. It’s no different from resizing a browser window, or modifying a Web page’s appearance using one of the hundreds of other browser plugins that are available. It’s completely under the control of the user, and doesn’t touch anything on the server side. …”

Can the law be copyrighted? | TechCrunch

UpCodes wants to fix one of the building industry’s biggest headaches by streamlining code compliance. But the Y Combinator-backed startup now faces a copyright lawsuit filed against it by the International Code Council, the nonprofit organization that develops the code used or adopted in building regulations by all 50 states….

UpCodes’ first product, an online database, gives free access to codes, code updates and local amendments from 32 states, as well as New York City. For building professionals and others who want more advanced search tools and collaboration features, UpCodes sells individual and team subscriptions. In 2018, UpCodes released its second product, called UpCodes AI. Described as a “spellcheck for buildings,” the plug-in scans 3D models created with building information modeling (BIM) data and highlights potential errors in real time….

It argues that its use of building codes is covered by fair use. The ICC, on the other hand, claims that products like UpCodes’ database harm its ability to make revenue and continue developing code. The ICC wants UpCodes to take down the building code on which it claims copyright, and has also sued for damages….”

Government Data as Intellectual Property: Is Public Domain the Same as Open Access?

Key points to highlight: U.S. federal government data is released into the public domain. This raises concerns about:

  • privacy and security of data about individuals
  • the potential for enclosure if the U.S. government does not maintain human readable interfaces, i.e. if the open data is used by commercial companies to create toll access services and the government does not provide free end user services, this would be an instance of open commercial use effectively creating enclosure (or privatizing what is currently free government services)

Abstract

Public domain and open data policies and how they are made. Current status of open data policies in the Federal government are changing with new laws. What is HR4174/S4047 and what does it say and mean? What are trends in government data policies regarding access to that statistical data? This article will give the reader an understanding of federal policies and laws regarding data.

Paris’s High Court has ordered French ISPs to block access to the pirate libraries LibGen and Sci-Hub

For more than a decade, publishing research articles have been a lucrative business for research institutes. As a result, some sites such as Sci-Hub and LibGen have gained popularity because of offering free access to scientific articles obtained through web scraping.

For instance, Sci-Hub has more than 25 million articles, readily accessible by researchers from all over the world. But Sci-Hub and LibGen have come under intense pressure from academic publishers who are not happy with the service.

The academic publishers believe Sci-Hub and LibGen are pirate libraries which are a threat to their multi-billion dollar industry. The publishers have unsuccessfully drafted ways to shut the services down through lawsuits.

But on March 31, there was a victorious breakthrough for the academic publishers after the French Judiciary ordered several of the largest French ISPs to block access to the pirate libraries; LibGen and Sci-Hub….”

[GOAL] OA2020 Mainland China Signatory Libraries responded to Plan S Guidance on Implementation

“The followings are the discussed response to Plan S Guidance on Implementation.

01 We are in broad support of Plan S and its goals to ensure immediate and complete open access to journal articles resulting from publicly funded research to the world. We applaud the effort of Plan S to provide strong incentives to make research open access. We support an international effort to achieve this goal worldwide as soon as possible.

02 We fully recognize that the need for forceful and accountable policies by public funders in research, education, and libraries, to facilitate open access against various entrenched interests or the inertia of the status quo. We urge all in research, education, publishing, platforms, repositories, and libraries to engage diligently in transformative efforts abreast with time to meet the challenges.

03 We support the Final Conference Statement of the 14th Berlin Conference on Open Access with its commitments. We urge all the publishers to work with the global research community to effect complete and immediate open access according to the Statement.

04 We support the principles and roadmaps of OA2020 Initiative which aims to transform a majority of today’s scholarly journals from subscription to OA publishing, while continues to support new forms of OA publishing. We believe the transition process can be realized within the framework of currently available resources. We see no legitimate reasons for, and will object to, any attempts to increase spending from the original subscribing institutions in the transformation.

05 We support that authors retain copyrights of their publications in open access publishing through journals or open access platforms.

06 We support that open access publications are made under open licenses. We support the use of the CC_BY license as the preferred one but recommend that other CC licenses also be allowed as compliant to Plan S.

07 We recognize the strong need for compliant requirements, agreed by the research communities, for open access journals and platforms. We agree that infrastructural instruments like DOAJ and OpenDOAR can be utilized to help identifying and signaling compliance, but we urge that cOAlition S and other funders recognize and support other appropriate mechanisms for the purpose and require any such instruments are put under international oversight by the global research community to ensure their no-for-profit nature, inclusiveness, objectiveness, integrity, and efficiency.

08 We commend the recognition by Plan S that there exist different models of financing and paying for Open Access publication. We support an inclusive range of immediate open access publishing approaches. We support the transparency and monitoring of open access publication costs and fees.

09 We urge that cOAlition S and other funders, through Plan S or other means, provide financial support for no-fee OA journals. The wide range of support approaches to no-fee OA journals should be encouraged to enhance the diversity of open access publishing and competiveness of publishing market, and to avoid the perverse effect of giving no-fee journals an incentive to start charging fees. While the support can start with general term statements, measures can be timely designed and tested to encourage quality, integrity, transparency and openness, and increasing host investment and other diverse and appropriate income.

10 We support that where article processing charges (APCs) apply, efforts are made to establish a fair and reasonable APC level, including equitable waiver policies, that reflects the costs involved in the quality assurance, editing, and publishing process and how that adds value to the publication. We hold it very important that any such effort should take into consideration of the diversity in the world to ensure applicability and affordability of any such measures across countries and disciplines.

11 We commend the support and requirements of Plan S for financing APCs for open access publication in subscription journals (‘hybrid Open Access’) only under transformative agreements. These agreements should be temporary and transitional, with a shift to full open access within a very few years.

12 We understand the purposes and the benefits of using ORCIDs in journal publications. Considering different paces of adopting ORCID in different regions and disciplines, we recommend that it is implemented as a preferred condition, at least in the short beginning years. We recommend the same treatment for using DOI.

13 We support the Plan S recommendation that “all publications and also other research outputs deposited in open repositories.” We recommend that Plan S make full acknowledge and use of the full range of capabilities of open repositories to support open access, long-term preservation, research management, and re-use.

14 We encourage that Plan S takes the transformative green OA mechanism as one of venues to implement open access, as long as the embargo period of com

European copyright directive ‘opens door to mass digitalisation’ | Times Higher Education (THE)

Librarians believe that a new copyright directive passed by the European Parliament could open the door to the mass digitalisation of books, films and audio recordings, potentially meaning fewer trips to distant libraries for scholars and students who need access to obscure material….

It should make it easier for libraries to digitalise documents that are still in copyright but are not commercially available. These could include radio broadcasts, out-of-print books and unpublished oral histories, said Ben White, a member of the legal working group at the Association of European Research Libraries.

It could help to make available “huge amounts of unpublished material with a big research value”, he said.

At the moment, libraries must seek permission to digitalise these documents one by one, painstakingly tracking down the copyright owner for each, he explained, meaning that digitalisation is not possible at scale….”

Isn’t Leakage Good for Libraries? – The Scholarly Kitchen

“In recent weeks, I have argued that content leakage is reducing the value of the subscription big deal. The syndication model might enable publishers to recapture much of this leakage, a model that Springer Nature has begun to pilot with ResearchGate, indicative of the strategic dilemmas that syndication poses. For libraries, syndication offers the opportunity to provide dramatically improved experiences for their users — with a number of risks as well, including the prospect of substantially reducing their leverage at the negotiating table….

What kinds of levels of usage increases can libraries anticipate? Elsevier has calculated [PDF; slide 10] that ScienceDirect usage stats would increase by 4-5% if Mendeley usage was counted and that adding versions of record to SSRN for entitled users would provide at least another 1%. But ResearchGate is by far the biggest prospect, and it would not surprise me to see at least some publisher usage numbers grow by 10%, 25%, or more for major library customers — once versions of record are distributed there to license-entitled users….

I’ve made the case that leakage has allowed groups of libraries to walk away from subscription big deal bundles in recent years. The platforms through which content is leaking most extensively — ResearchGate and Academia perhaps more than any others, but also pirate sites and institutional and disciplinary repositories — have afforded libraries the greatest leverage in their big deal negotiations. To the extent that leaks are plugged up, we must examine how this affects publishers’ and libraries’ negotiating positions….

I have already explained why Elsevier fears ResearchGate as a syndication hub and Springer Nature would like to embrace it….”