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Archive for October 24th, 2011

My Activities for Open Access Week 2011

Posted by Brian Kelly on 24 October 2011

Open Access Week 2011: #OAWeek

Today marks the launch of Open Access Week. This is a global event, now in its 5th year, which promotes Open Access as a new norm in scholarship and research.  As described in last year’s summary about the event:

“Open Access” to information – the free, immediate, online access to the results of scholarly research, and the right to use and re-use those results as you need – has the power to transform the way research and scientific inquiry are conducted. It has direct and widespread implications for academia, medicine, science, industry, and for society as a whole. 

This year’s summary of the campaign encourages people to become actively involved with the campaign:

Every year, research funders, academic institutions, libraries research organizations, non-profits, businesses, and others use Open Access Week as a valuable platform to convene community events as well as to announce significant action on Open Access.  The Week has served as a launching pad for new open-access publication funds, open-access policies, and papers reporting on the societal and economic benefits of OA.

I agree that it is important to become actively involved in open access activities – being a passive supporter can mean that one is consuming open resources provided by others, rather than actively engaging in the transformation of the research culture which the campaign is seeking to do.  I’m looking forward to seeing the #OAWeek tweets (which is archived on TwapperKeeper) in which people will be describing what they are doing. In this post I’ll describe how I have engaged in open access in the past and how I am supporting the Open Access Week 2012 campaign, beyond registering on the Open Access Web site.

Getting Involved

Back in 2005 in a paper entitled “Let’s Free IT Support Materials! ” I argued that support service departments, which should include libraries as well as IT Service departments, should be taking a lead in embracing openness by making training materials, slides and documentation available with a Creative Commons licence.

For several years I have been making my slides available under a Creative Commons licence. As an example on Thursday I will be giving a talk entitled “What’s On the Technology Horizon?” at the ILI 2011 conference.  The talk will describe work commissioned by the JISC Observatory (which is being provided by UKOLN and CETIS) which has identified technological developments which are expected to have an impact on the higher education sector over the next four years or so.  It is pleasing that open content has been listed as a development which is expected to have a significant impact across the sector with a time-to-adoption horizon or one year of less. It is clearly appropriate that my slides for the talk are provided with a Creative Commons licence:

It should also be noted that permission will be granted for live-blogging and live streaming of the talk, with permission being clarified on the second slide of the presentation, as illustrated.

The licence to share live presentations is one aspect of UKOLN’s long-standing involvement in organising and participating in amplified events and in advising others of best practices in the provision of such events.  We are currently developing guidelines for amplified events as part of our involvement  in the JISC-funded Greening Events II project.

In addition to describing possible environmental benefits which can be gained by enabling a remote audience  to participate in events, we will also describe additional benefits which can be gained by adopting a more open approach to events as described by my c0lleague Marieke Guy in a post on Openness and Event Amplification.

However so far I have summarised ways in which myself and colleagues at UKOLN have supported differing aspects of open access in the past. I feel there is a need at the start of Open Access Week 2011 to outline new and additional ways in which the benefits of open access can be further enhanced.

A change to the licence conditions for posts on this blog was announced on 12 January 2011 when I described how Non-Commercial Use Restriction Removed From This Blog. This post described how

The BY-NC-SA licence was chosen [in 2005] as it seemed at the time to provide a safe option, allowing the resources to be reused by others in the sector whilst retaining the right to commercially exploit the resources. In reality, however, the resources haven’t been exploited commercially and increasingly the sector is becoming aware of the difficulties in licensing resources which excludes commercial use, as described by Peter Murray-Rust in a recent post on “Why I and you should avoid NC licence“.

I have therefore decided that from 1 January 2011 posts and comments published on this blog will be licenced with a Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike 2.0 licence (CC BY-SA).

However the share-alike clause can also provide difficulties in allowing others to reuse the content.  Although I would encourage others to adopt a similar Creative Commons licence I realise that this may not also be achievable.  So rather than requiring this as part of the licence, I will now simply encourage others who use posts published on this blog to make derived works available under a Creative Commons licence  and limit the licence conditions to a CC-BY licence which states that:

You are free:

  • to copy, distribute, display, and perform the work
  • to make derivative works
  • to make commercial use of the work

Under the following conditions:

  • Attribution — You must give the original author credit.

In addition to using this licence for blog posts from 24 October 2011 I also intend to use this  licence for presentations I will give in the future – and, as can be seen from the above image, the licence has been applied to the resources I will give in my talk at the ILI 2011 conference later this week.

That’s how I’m involved with Open Access 2011 week. What are you doing?

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