Saturday, October 28, 2006

Open Access Update

Charles Bailey has updated Open Access Update - a great way to search many open access resources.

This post reflects my personal opinion only and does not represent the opinions or policy of the BC Electronic Library Network or the Simon Fraser University Library.

New OA Information Literacy Journal: Call for Papers

Communications in Information Literacy, a forthcoming new open access journal, has just issued a Call for Papers.

Thanks to Laurie the Librarian.

This post reflects my personal opinion only and does not represent the opinions or policy of the BC Electronic Library Network or the Simon Fraser University Library.

ProQuest offers OA option for theses

ProQuest now offers an open access option for publishing theses - a little more expensive than their traditional thesis publishing services, but at $150 total, including traditional fees and an addition $95 for open access, for a doctoral thesis, for publishing and ongoing preservation, this does seem pretty reasonable.

Note: this is not an error. The price listed on the ProQuest web site is $150, one hundred and fifty dollars - total publishing cost, including open access, for a doctoral thesis...

Thanks to Peter Suber on Open Access News for the alert.

This post reflects my personal opinion only and does not represent the opinions or policy of the BC Electronic Library Network or the Simon Fraser University Library.


LISZen is a search tool using google custom search to search over 500 LIS-related blogs - including OA Librarian!

Thanks to Peter Suber on Open Access News.

This post reflects my personal opinion only and does not represent the opinions or policy of the BC Electronic Library Network or the Simon Fraser University Library.

Friday, October 27, 2006

E-LIS Introduces Usage Statistics for Authors

* Apologies for cross-posting *

We are glad to announce that a new Statistics module has been implemented in E-LIS, E-prints in Library and Information Science. The purpose of the statistics is to promote E-LIS repository and authors self-archiving as well, by demonstrating the accessibility and usage of deposited documents by access and downloads .

Usage statistics (abstracts, downloads) are now available by the following elements:

• Most viewed eprints in the last four weeks
• Most viewed eprints in this year
• Most viewed eprints in the last year
• Most viewed eprints in all years
• Repository-wide statistics by year/month
• Repository-wide statistics by country

You can see the implementation of the Statistics at The use of statistics is basic for the development of Open Acess Model and for the achievement of our first objective: to promote self-archiving among researchers.

Some examples of statistics results are the following:
• Prosser, David C. ( 2003) Scholarly communication in the 21st century : the impact of new technologies and models. Serials : the journal for the serials community 16(2):pp. 163-167 .
• Suber, Peter (2006) Open Access in the United States, in Jacobs, Neil, Eds. Open Access : Key strategic, technical and economic aspects. Chandos Publishing .
• Estivill Rius, Assumpció and Abadal Falgueras, Ernest and Franganillo, Jorge and Gascón García, Jesús and Rodríguez i Gairín, Josep Manuel (2005) Uso de metadatos Dublin Core en la descripción y recuperación de artículos de revista digitales = Use of Dublin Core metadata for describing and retrieving digital journals . In Proceedings DC-2005 International Conference on Dublin Core and Metadata Applications, Madrid (Spain).
• Parmar, Arvind Singh and Kumar, Sanghmitra A. and Prakash, Thushara (2004) Bibliometric analysis of information seeking behaviour related literature

We encourage other repositories to implement statistics for each archived document. E-LIS uses EPrints Software module, but also DSpace has developed an Add-On for Statistics.

Some comments to the use of the statistics in E-LIS are the following:

• • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • •

"All authors crave impact - we hope that what we write will affect readers and will make a difference. However, often it is difficult to tell if our work has even been read. Now we have a clue. The newly implemented download statistics in E-LIS tell me fascinating stories about the usage of my work - papers that I thought 'old news' are still being downloaded, the geographical distribution of readers is greater than I would have guessed. This is a wonderful tool for both authors and readers and shows, once again, the power of self-archiving. Now all I need to know is what the readers thought of my work!"
David Prosser
SPARC Europe

"Having statistics for each article posted in E-LIS can be a valuable tool for the study of the development of the intellectual production in librarianship and information science. This and the use of bibliometric techniques would help us assess library development around the world…"
Julio Santillan Aldana
Responsible of the open access journal Biblios
E-LIS Editor for Peru

"The Eprint Statistics feature is an impressive new addition to E-LIS. It presents clear and immediate data on use of documents in the repository, something every author wants to see. I've found myself checking the statistics on my documents regularly and have also discovered that it's a very effective recruitment feature for E-LIS; colleagues who have never deposited in E-LIS have done so very soon after seeing the Eprints Statistics function in action".
Andrew Waller
Author and E-LIS Editor for Canada

• • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • •

For any information about the implementation do not hesitate to contact us.

Best Regards,

E-LIS Team

This post reflects my personal opinion only and does not represent the opinions or policy of the BC Electronic Library Network or the Simon Fraser University Library.

Thursday, October 26, 2006

Open access vs. IRs

Which gets mentioned more on web pages? To find out, go to GoogleDuel here.

Higher Education and Library Leader Voice Support for FRPAA

Announcement from SPARC - with thanks to Peter Suber, Open Access News:

Washington, DC - In remarks at a forum on "Improving Access to Publicly Funded Research," leaders of major higher education and library organizations voiced their support for the goals of recent measures to expand public access to research funded by the US Government. The forum was co-sponsored by Association of American Universities (AAU), Association of Research Libraries (ARL), Coalition for Networked Information (CNI), National Association of State Universities and Land-Grant Colleges (NASULGC), and SPARC (Scholarly Publishing and Academic Resources Coalition).

"I fully support the aims and the specifics of the Cornyn/Lieberman Federal Research Public Access Act [FRPAA]," said David Shulenburger, Vice President for Academic Affairs of NASULGC. Introduced last May, FRPAA (S.2695) would require all US federal agencies that fund over $100 million on external research to ensure the resulting peer-reviewed research articles are available free on the Internet within six months of publication. "Scholars and the public are on the right side of this matter. Cornyn/Lieberman should become law."

Shulenburger rejected claims by some publishers that open access to research articles after a six-month embargo, called for by FRPAA, will undermine journals and the peer review they orchestrate. "We now have significant experience with journals that voluntarily have permitted articles they published to be made available for free after delay periods ranging from zero delay to one year's and that evidence is not consistent with an apocalyptic collapse of the subscriber base." He added, "These journals would not have taken that step voluntarily had they been overly concerned about catastrophic loss of subscribers."

John Vaughn, Executive Vice President of AAU, reiterated his organization's support of the National Institutes of Health (NIH) Public Access Policy that makes the results of NIH-funded research freely available. He said he prefers non-legislative means of improving access to federal research, such as NIH is pursuing, but noted that the prospect of a legislative solution has motivated positive movement by publishers that otherwise might not have been forthcoming.

Commenting on the growing numbers of university administrators who have spoken out recently in support of public access legislation, SPARC Executive Director Heather Joseph noted that they consider public access "mission critical" to advancing the goals of higher education institutions.

ARL Executive Director Duane Webster said, "The research library community vigorously advocates passage of FRPAA. This legislation is an essential step toward broadening access to widely needed information resources."

Librarians from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT) and the University of California (UC) highlighted local efforts to aid faculty in retaining rights to deposit their works in open online archives. UC is contemplating a system-wide policy that would routinely grant to the university "a limited, irrevocable, perpetual, worldwide, non-exclusive license to place in a non-commercial open-access online repository the faculty member's scholarly work published in a scholarly journal or conference proceedings." MIT has developed an addendum that authors of journal articles can use to amend journal publishers' copyright transfer agreements and secure open-archiving rights.

Commenting on the issue of rights management, CNI Executive Director Clifford Lynch said "universities need to take seriously the asymmetrical nature of negotiations" when faculty members face publishers on copyright transfer agreements. "Universities will do well to follow the lead of MIT and UC and provide institutional support for faculty negotiations. If universities negotiate on behalf of faculty this also helps publishers ultimately by reducing the number of special agreements and thus benefits the entire scholarly publishing system in the end."

Papers and slides from speakers at the forum are available at


Additional links:
Forum remarks by David Shulenburger:
Federal Research Public Access Act (FRPAA):
List of higher education supporters of FRPAA:
AAU Statement on the NIH Public Access Proposal:
NIH Public Access Policy:

The Association of Research Libraries (ARL) is a nonprofit organization of 123 research libraries in North America. Its mission is to influence the changing environment of scholarly communication and the public policies that affect research libraries and the diverse communities they serve. ARL pursues this mission by advancing the goals of its member research libraries, providing leadership in public and information policy to the scholarly and higher education communities, fostering the exchange of ideas and expertise, and shaping a future environment that leverages its interests with those of allied organizations. ARL is located on the Web at

SPARC (Scholarly Publishing and Academic Resources Coalition) and SPARC Europe are an international alliance of academic and research libraries and organizations working to correct imbalances in the scholarly publishing system. SPARC's advocacy, educational, and publisher partnership programs encourage expanded dissemination of research.

This post reflects my personal opinion only and does not represent the opinions or policy of the BC Electronic Library Network or the Simon Fraser University Library.

Tuesday, October 24, 2006

Cool new search tool for OA News!

Open Access News now features a cool new search tool! This works much better than the previous search tool.

Try it out, from the right-hand side of Open Access News. To find the URL for some of Peter's Newsletter features, try a search for newsletter and the topic. For example, "newsletter quality" brings up Peter's feature in the October Newsletter at the very top; "newsletter funding agencies" brings up Peter's feature from August listing the 10 key things to consider when examining funding agency policies.

This is useful for much more than Peter's own works, of course - it works pretty well for a search tool for my blogposts about open access, too - I can use this search to find all of Peter's reference to my Dramatic Growth of Open Access series!

Try a search for "OA Librarian" - not all the references are to our blog here...but they're all pretty interesting!

Peter built this tool using Google Custom Search; for details, see Open Access News.

Thanks Peter - this will help us all get more organized!

This post reflects my personal opinion only and does not represent the opinions or policy of the BC Electronic Library Network or the Simon Fraser University Library.

First International PKP Scholarly Publishing Conference: Call for Papers

First International PKP Scholarly Publishing Conference: Call for Papers

The Public Knowledge Project is pleased to announce that the first international PKP conference will be held from July 11–13, 2007 in Vancouver, British Columbia, Canada.
The conference will provide opportunities for those involved in the organization, promotion, and study of scholarly communication to share and discuss innovative work in scholarly publishing, with a focus on the contribution that open source publishing technologies (such as, but not restricted to, PKP's OJS, OCS, and OA Harvester) can make to improving access to research and scholarship on a global and public scale

The conference will appeal to all segments of the PKP community: software developers and technical support specialists; journal publishers, editors, and staff; librarians; and researchers in scholarly publishing. As well, prospective and first time users of OJS and other PKP software will be able to learn more about the systems and establish contacts with the PKP community. Experienced implementers and developers will have an opportunity to participate in technical sessions and exchange information. All attendees will be able to attend a range of topical sessions on trends in scholarly communication and publishing, open access initiatives, open source software, academic and library communities, and future plans for OJS, OCS, and the Open Archives Harvester.

The conference will commence with an opening keynote session on the evening of July 11 with John Willinsky, the founder of the Public Knowledge Project and creator of the OJS software. There will be several pre-conference workshops on July 11, and the main conference program will present a combination of concurrent and single track sessions concluding at noon on July 13.

The Call for Papers and link to online submission form can be found at:

For more details about the conference, see the PKP Conference web site at:

Heather G. Morrison
PKP Conference - Communications
Project Coordinator
BC Electronic Library Network
Phone: 604-268-7001
Fax: 604-291-3023
Email: heather dot eln dot bc dot ca

Monday, October 23, 2006

Helping authors keep their rights!

Authors do not have to sign over copyright to publish. The only copyright that publishers need - is permission to publish!

The Scholarly Publishing and Research Coalition (SPARC) has made available an Author's Addendum, to be attached to any author copyright transfer form, clarifying that the author is retaining their rights, for example for self-archiving purposes.

The Author's Addendum, and related resources such as the Author's Rights brochures, can be found on the SPARC Author's Rights page.

This post reflects my personal opinion only and does not represent the opinions or policy of the BC Electronic Library Network or the Simon Fraser University Library.

Persian OA / E-LIS blog

Alireza Noruzi, Iranian E-LIS Editor, has created a blog in Persian called E-LIS: Open Access Archive for LIS, which is designed to promote E-LIS and open access in general. Thanks, Alireza!

This post reflects my personal opinion only and does not represent the opinions or policy of the BC Electronic Library Network or the Simon Fraser University Library.

OA / U of A

The University of Alberta libraries has created a blog called Open Access Publishing Information for the University of Alberta Community.

Here is the introduction to the blog from the Welcome page:

The University of Alberta Libraries encourages University of Alberta faculty members and researchers to publish their work according to the principles of the Open Access model, to maximize the access and benefit to scientists, scholars and the public throughout the world.

To these ends, we have created this information site to provide an overview of Open Access publishing initiatives and support available for members of the University of Alberta Community.

Thanks & congratulations on a beautiful, well-organized blog to Denise Koufogiannakis, Pam Ryan, & Trish Chatterly, University of Alberta Libraries.

This post reflects my personal opinion only and does not represent the opinions or policy of the BC Electronic Library Network or the Simon Fraser University Library.

Thursday, October 19, 2006

Creative Commons Fundraising Campaign

The Creative Commons has launched its annual fundraising campaign. This year's campaign will feature stories about the innovative ways that people are making use of friendly licensing options.

If you need background info about the Creative Commons, visit this page.

This post reflects my personal opinion only and does not represent the opinions or policy of the BC Electronic Library Network or the Simon Fraser University Library.

Campaign for Open Government

The Campaign for Open Government launched in Vancouver on September 26, 2006.


Vancouver – A broad-based coalition which includes the Canadian Taxpayer’s Federation, BC Civil Liberties Association, BC Freedom of Information and Privacy Association (FIPA), and many other groups, launched a campaign today to ensure BC’s government fulfils its long-overdue promise to be a Canadian leader in openness and accountability.

The Campaign for Open Government is focusing on the Province’s poor record of response to Freedom of Information (FOI) requests. The FOI Act allows citizens and organizations to request copies of government documents.

“Our tax dollars pay for all government reports, memos, policy analysis, everything. If citizens pay for it, they have a right to know what it is,” said Sara MacIntyre of the Canadian Taxpayers Association.

“In 2004 a Committee of the Legislature reviewed the FOI Act and recommended amendments that were applauded by academics, activists, media organizations and citizens,” commented Darrell Evans of FIPA. “To date, the government has ignored these recommendations completely. On the other hand, they have made a large number of amendments and procedural changes that have made it more difficult and time consuming to obtain information.”

This post reflects my personal opinion only and does not represent the opinions or policy of the BC Electronic Library Network or the Simon Fraser University Library.

Monday, October 16, 2006

New "For Authors" Service in DOAJ

A press release over the weekend announced that the Directory of Open Access Journals, or DOAJ (, has added a service to the site that allows authors to determine whether or not there is a submission fee for an OA journal in which they are interested in publishing. Basically, the "find journals" feature now has two more search filters, one for "free to publish" titles and the other for "author pays to publish" (I think something like "submission fee required to publish" would have been a preferable way to phrase the latter but...). The press release also notes that the DOAJ folks don't have the submission fee information for all the journals and would appreciate any such information for those that they do not have.

I saw the press release on the liblicense-l list. The press release can also be found in the "news" section of the DOAJ site at

On a related note, the main page of the DOAJ site notes that there are now 2414 journals in the directory. Not too shabby, I think.

Friday, October 13, 2006

Creating New Publishing Channels Is Our Future

I've been eerily silent recently on OA Librarian because I'm teaching, taking two courses and holding down a full-time job. (Oh, yeah, and blogging AND wiki'ing. Am I crazy?) But I've been thinking of starting a new blog as a step beyond informing other librarians about open access. Don't know what I'd call it but I'd like it to be a completely new idea about librarians' direct involvement in publishing.

Remember the CMAJ scandal early in 2006? I've been working with a new editorial team on a new journal in Canadian medicine, called OpenMedicine. We're working with web designers on a new look, a new branding.

Librarians must move beyond informing each other and their users about open access (OA), I believe, to creating new forms of information dissemination, working closely with scholars and researchers and partnering on wikis, blikis and blogs. Oh, yes, and if you have time - why not start your own Open Access Journal?

I'll keep you posted on our launch date, early 2007.


Wednesday, October 11, 2006

DRAFT Policy on Access to CIHR-Funded Research Outputs

The Canadian Institutes of Health Research (CIHR) has released its Draft Policy on Access to CIHR-Funded Research Outputs. Comments are requested by November 24, 2006.

This is a strong policy - kudos to CIHR! Highlights include a strong open access mandate for peer-reviewed journal articles, with no more than a 6-month publisher-imposed delay, a recommendation that researchers consider retroactively archiving their most important articles, an indication that a researcher's track record of providing access to research outputs will be considered in the future when considering requests for funding, and a requirement to deposit research data into the appropriate public database immediately on publication.

When considering your own response, it may be helpful to consult Peter Suber's Ten Lessons from the Funding Agencies Open Access Policies, in the August 2006 SPARC Open Access Newsletter.

Update October 12 -

Peter Suber's Comment, from Open Access News (please see OA News for the links):

Comment. Kudos to the CIHR for this exemplary policy.

1. The policy is an unambiguous mandate. It applies to all research funded in whole or in part by CIHR. It applies to both peer-reviewed journal articles and data files. (Although it requires some kinds of data-sharing and merely encourages others, it may be the strongest data-sharing policy by any funder to date.) It makes reasonable exceptions for royalty-producing publications like monographs. It lets grantees choose between OA journals and OA repositories, and in the latter case, between institutional and disciplinary repositories. The only condition on eligible repositories is that they be OAI-compliant. The policy uses the dual deposit/release strategy (requiring immediate deposit and permitting delayed OA release, in this case limiting embargoes to six months). And it takes a grantee's past compliance into account when evaluating new funding proposals. With one exception the policy embodies all the most important lessons from the funding agency open access policies. The exception is that CIHR doesn't offer to pay article processing fees for grantees who choose to publish in fee-based OA journals.

2. The CIHR has called for comments on its new draft. Responses are due by November 24, 2006.

3. For background, the CIHR announced that it was considering an OA policy and called for public comments back in April 2006. In June it released an update on where it stood in the process and in August (in a document dated June) it released a summary of the public comments.

4. If the CIHR draft counts as a policy, and the new OA policy in Austria counts as a mandate (it deliberately positions itself between a request and a requirement), then the CIHR policy is the seventh OA mandate to be adopted this month. There are the four new mandates from the RCUK, the expansion of the existing mandate at the Wellcome Trust, the Austrian policy, and now the CIHR. This is unprecedented momentum.

Stevan Harnad on Open Access Archivangelism reports that the CIHR proposal is 99% optimal - please see Stevan's blogpost for substantive details.

This post reflects my personal opinion only and does not represent the opinions or policy of the BC Electronic Library Network or the Simon Fraser University Library.

Tuesday, October 10, 2006

Librarian Publishing Preferences and Open-Access Electronic Journals

Article of interest by Elaine Peterson, Montana State University. Electronic Journal of Academic and Special Librarianship v.7 no.2 (Summer 2006). Librarian Publishing Preferences and Open-Access Electronic Journals.

Librarians have often led the way in championing Open-Access (OA) journals on the Internet as an alternative to established journal titles that are subscription based. In the discipline of Library and Information Science, all types of journals continue to be published—paper and electronic, subscription-based and free. Using a survey, this article explores how some librarians view OA titles. The article collects suggestions for editors of OA journals. The article also asks questions about the relationship of OA journals to the promotion and tenure process for academic librarians.

Thanks to CARL (Canadian Assocation of Research Libraries).

This post reflects my personal opinion only and does not represent the opinions or policy of the BC Electronic Library Network or the Simon Fraser University Library.

The Community Health Online Digital Archive Research Resource

The Community Health Online Digital Archive Research Resource (CHODARR) project will establish a permanent, publicly accessible, no-fee digital archive of research materials related to health and social welfare, with special interest in HIV, women’s health, aboriginal health, and community mental health. The unique features of CHODARR will be its genuine accessibility (via the internet), its content (focused on “grey literature”), and its diversity of stakeholders.

If you're in Vancouver October 18th, please join the BCLA Information Policy Committee for a Salon by Dr. Cindy Patton on CHODARR, featuring the project and related policy issues. If you cannot attend, but have questions for Dr. Patton, please let us know.

For details and to register for the Salon, please contact IPC Co-Chair Carla Graebner. Contact information is available on the BCLA web site - look up Committees, then IPC.

This post reflects my personal opinion only and does not represent the opinions or policy of the BC Electronic Library Network or the Simon Fraser University Library.

Monday, October 09, 2006

October so far - a mandate a day!

So far, 6 OA mandates have come into effect this month - 4 RCUK mandates, an expansion of the Wellcome Trust mandate, and a new mandate by Austria's Förderung der wissenschaftlichen Forschung [Fund for the Promotion of Scientific Reseach]. It's only October 8th, so this is more than a mandate per business day so far - wow!!! Thanks to Peter Suber (and Matt Cockerill) - for details and links, see: Open Access News.

Other important developments are in the works, including the European Commission's Study on the Economic and Technical Evolution of the Scientific Publication Market in Europe - a summary of their recent consultation process was just released. Details on Open Access News.

This post reflects my personal opinion only and does not represent the opinions or policy of the BC Electronic Library Network or the Simon Fraser University Library.

Fatima Darries: award-winning South African OA Librarian

Fatima Darries, South African OA Librarian activist and co-E-LIS Editor, South Africa, has been formally recognized as a role model to the rest of the Library and Information Community. Congratulations, Fatima!

Here is the text of the announcement:

On behalf of the National Executive of LIASA and Sabinet Online, we are very pleased and proud to announce that the LIASA/Sabinet Librarian of the Year for 2006 is Fatima Darries.

Fatima was nominated by the Western Cape Branch. She receives an award of R25 000 to be used for any educational purpose (further studies, visits to relevant institutions locally or internationally, attending relevant conferences). The Librarian of the Year is seen to be a role model to the rest of the Library and Information community and a person whose contributions make a lasting impact on the sector.

The motivation from the Western Cape branch reads (in part): "In addition to fulfilling all the criteria for this prestigious award, Ms Darries has been very actively involved in LIASA ... She demonstrates excellence in promoting library and
information services and the Association through her work at the Cape Peninsula University of Technology and LIASA activities. Her leadership is demonstrated by the various initiatives such as the establishment of the WCHELIG (Western Cape
Higher Education Libraries Interest Group) and the successful Colloquiums hosted by this interest group. An exceptional achievement was her selection to attend the HERS-SA Academy as one of four Cape Technikon women. In 2005, Fatima was one of
six South African women to attend the Bryn Mawr Summer Institute and also presented a paper there, promoting librarians and making valuable contacts. She is also an
accredited EDT practitioner and her involvement with training is evidence of her commitment to the development of LIS professionals."

Thanks to Jennifer A. De Beer, co-Editor, E-LIS South Africa

October SPARC Open Access Newsletter

The SPARC Open Access Newsletter, released last week, features an in-depth article by Peter Suber on Open Access and Quality.

Here is a thought for a project if someone has time - perhaps a student could do this as an assignment? There are a number of in-depth articles on different topics in the SPARC Open Access Newsletter - I'd love to see a topic index.

Update October 10: Peter Suber maintains a List of Peter Suber's writings on open access, in reverse chronological order. Major newsletter features are included. For more links to Peter's works on topics other than open access (e.g. philosophy, law), see Peter Suber's home page.

Come to think of it, are indexing services beginning to look at, and include, these kinds of works? That might be a topic for a different paper...

Comment from Walt Crawford:

To the best of my knowledge, indexing sources--at least those within the library field--are not doing much with what I think of as the "formal gray literature" such as SPARC Open Access Newsletter and Cites & Insights. I've written about this in Cites & Insights (, most recently in the September 2006 issue, mourning the failure of a group attempt to get more visibility for the formal gray literature.

What's formal gray literature? In this case, electronic publications with ISSNs, established missions, reasonably regular publication, and a track record--but without a price and without being refereed journals. In the view of one indexing-service head, such publications are inherently more ephemeral than publications that cost money or than publications with peer review--and that's even true for a five-year-old "gray" publication as compared to a refereed journal that dies after two issues.

This post reflects my personal opinion only and does not represent the opinions or policy of the BC Electronic Library Network or the Simon Fraser University Library.

Staffing an Institutional Repository

Need to make a case for staff for that institutional repository?

Dorothea Salo, self-styled repository rat and author of Caveat Lector, has some great tips based on her experience, in Staffing an Institutional Repository.

This post reflects my personal opinion only and does not represent the opinions or policy of the BC Electronic Library Network or the Simon Fraser University Library.

Strong Copyright + DRM + Weak Net Neutrality = Digital Dystopia?

The postprint of Charles Bailey's Strong Copyright + DRM + Weak Net Neutrality = Digital Dystopia? is now available. While the focus is not open access, Charles clearly and succinctly explains some of the key policy topics related to open access.


Three critical issues—-dramatic expansion of the scope, duration, and punitive nature of copyright laws; the ability of Digital Rights Management (DRM) systems to lock-down digital content in an unprecedented fashion; and the erosion of Net neutrality, which ensures that all Internet traffic is treated equally—-are examined in detail and their potential impact on libraries is assessed. How legislatures, the courts, and the commercial marketplace treat these issues will strongly influence the future of digital information for good or ill.

Forwarded from SCHOLCOMM.

Saturday, October 07, 2006

Ajit Pyati, open source and open access in libraries

We librarians are a collaborative lot - and OA Librarians are no exception. Ajit Pyati is a PhD student who would love to see open access become a reality because to him, it means a more equitable world, one more in line with the values of our profession. Ajit, an editor of the pioneering InterActions: UCLA Journal of Education and Information Studies in its formative years, emphasizes that he is just a part of the team. InterActions, an open access journal, was one of the first e-journals produced by the California Digital Library. Ajit is, in a way, a second-generation OA advocate, one who became involved with OA when he joined the local journal team.

Currently, Ajit is working on a PhD, studying technology development in libraries, specifically open source, and to some extent open access. The direction of Ajit's studies was influenced by a visit to Vancouver last summer, where he met John Willinsky and learned about the Public Knowledge Project, which, among other things, developed the Open Journal Systems software, a free open source publishing software in use by open access publishers around the world. Simon Fraser University Library [where I work] is a partner in OJS, and provides support and some development for the OJS software, as well as a suite of open source products called reSearcher [GODOT link resolver, CUFTS knowledgebase, CUFTS journal database (A to Z list), dbwiz (federated search tool), and more. [Disclosure: I work with the reSearcher team].

This brief introduction to Ajit's work already illustrates two key areas of support that libraries are providing for open access. The California Digital Library provides free access to and support for the bepress publishing software for California faculty, faciliating the development of open access journals by California faculty (and graduate students, in the case of InterActions). UCLA has supported the development of InterActions by providing funding for the graduate students who work on the journal. Perhaps this is a model with broader application? Funding is so important for graduate students - and isn't participating in publishing a great learning experience? Simon Fraser University Library actively contributes to the development and support of OJS, and provides hosting and support services on a cost-recovery basis.

It was my pleasure recently to meet Ajit when he came to Vancouver to interview people for his research. Ajit sees open source as an option that gives libraries more control over what we do; with open source, we do not follow developments, we lead them.

Library schools take note: this passioniate, very intelligent PhD candidate, with a temperament that strikes me as ideal for teaching, is anticipating graduation in June 2007. One example of Ajit's work, an article called WSIS: Whose Vision of an Information Society? can be found in First Monday.
Best of luck with that PhD, Ajit - I can't wait to see the results of your thesis!
Creative Commons License
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial 3.0 United States License.

Bielefeld Academic Search Engine

BASE, the Bielefeld Academic Search Engine, is a metasearch tool for the Bielefeld Digital Library. Substantial open access resources are included, both open access journals and open access archives. Searches can be limited to the free content, so this tool can be useful for everyone, not just the Bielefeld Digital Library users.

Thanks to Ilkay Holt, E-LIS Editor, Turkey.

This post reflects my personal opinion only and does not represent the opinions or policy of the BC Electronic Library Network or the Simon Fraser University Library.

AcademicBlogs: The Academic Blog Portal

AcademicBlogs: The Academic Blog Portal is looking like a great start to a comprehensive pathfinder on this topic. There is a section for academic librarian bloggers - please add your own!

Thanks to Steve Bell, via Peter Suber on Open Access News.

This post reflects my personal opinion only and does not represent the opinions or policy of the BC Electronic Library Network or the Simon Fraser University Library.

Wednesday, October 04, 2006

Check out and get excited about e-learning! is a new free ezine by Laurie the Librarian! The first issue features my articles About E-LIS and a tips sheet for Depositing in E-LIS. looks terrific - congrats to Laurie Prange of Yukon College.

This post reflects my personal opinion only and does not represent the opinions or policy of the BC Electronic Library Network or the Simon Fraser University Library.

Tuesday, October 03, 2006

Still More Hybrid Journal Programs: T & F and RSC

In the last several days, both Taylor & Francis (last week) and the Royal Society of Chemistry (yesterday) have announced hybrid OA journal programs. T & F's OA option is called iOpenAccess. RSC's doesn't seem to have a snazzy name (I may have missed something). Both are the usual sort of thing; authors or other submitters can pay a fee in order for their accepted articles to be made freely available. I won't go into too many details here; Peter Suber does his usual great job and provides much information and commentary on both options on his blog ( There are also press releases for both:

Taylor & Francis:;jsessionid=783FB2EE031A3EF1293484D00ED96C8E

Royal Society of Chemisty:

There's more information on the RSC option at and at

I will mention a few things, though. First, I noticed that both programs are not cheap; $3100 US for T & F and 1000-2500 UKP for RSC. These may be the most expensive submission fees for hybrid OA journals; will this be a deterent for some authors? Second, the T & F OA option will only apply to 175 of their STM journals. The T & F journal suite includes many social sciences and humanities titles; I wonder if OA figures into the planning for these journals? Finally, I was pleased to see that T & F will be looking at subscription costs for those journals that are included in the iOpenAccess program:

We undertake to review the subscription prices of each journal with respect to the uptake of the iOpenAccess initiative, and the relevant information will be published on each journal’s home page at

RSC has indicated that they may do the same.

An important final question: Which big publishers have not established a hybrid OA journal program? There may be a few but nothing comes to mind. I'll have to think about it.

Monday, October 02, 2006

Stanford Encyclopedia of Philosophy Update

The Stanford Encyclopedia of Philosophy is an innovative open access project in more than one sense. This is a peer-reviewed philosophy encyclopedia aiming for top quality through a prestigious editorial board and invitation to write articles by the experts in a variety of areas. SEP was developed by the philosophers themselves, and is experimenting with an open access funding method with tremendous potential if successful: fundraising to create an endowment fund for ongoing access through covering SEP's modest operating costs. This fundraising effort is a collaboration between libraries, philosophy departments, U.S. funding agencies, and Stanford University. Funds contributed by libraries are matched by other donors.

If every library that can afford a specialized online encyclopedia like this were to commit about what such a resource would cost for three years of subscription, there would be more than enough for the endowment for SEP. This is what is so exciting about the model, in my opinion - just a little bit of rethinking about those purchase dollars can mean permanent change for optimum access for all.

If your library has already committed a little, have another look and see how many others are participating, and whether you could commit a little more. If your library isn't participating yet, give this some thought. For more details, see the SEP website - oh, and check out the new interface while you're there, it looks great!