All posts by colleenlyon

Happy Fair Use Week!

This week is Fair Use Week and UT Libraries is participating by hosting a Copyright & Fair Use workshop on Wednesday and by joining in the online discussion via social media.

If you want to see everything that is happening around the country this week, please see the Association of Research Libraries’ page devoted to Fair Use Week.

What is fair use?

Fair use is the limited use of copyrighted works without needing to ask permission from the copyright owner. There is a ton of nuance in that sentence and fair use requires careful consideration. While it is complicated, it’s one of the most important parts of U.S. copyright law for people who are creating new works by building upon the works of others.

Fair use is happening all around – especially if you are on a college campus.

  • A professor may use small clips from films or television shows to demonstrate or illustrate a point in class
  • A student may use quotes from other authors in order to expand upon an argument in their paper
  • University radio or TV stations may use small clips from press conferences or other events as part of their news reporting
  • An instructor may share an article or selected reading with their class
  • A PhD student may include images or figures in their dissertation
  • A student group may create a parody of a popular show or meme

If this all seems foreign to you, I encourage to come to the workshop tomorrow (Wednesday) about fair use. We’ll discuss the basics of copyright & fair use and have hands-on “is this fair use?” activities.

The Libraries also has a comprehensive resource about copyright in the U.S. There is a subsection on fair use that gives a good overview of what needs to be considered. And I highly recommend you check out the codes of best practices that the Center for Media & Social Impact has collected on their site. While these statements are not legally binding, they are a great resource for investigating fair use in different fields.

 

Gates Foundation and AAAS OA agreement

You’ve probably already seen the news, but the Gates Foundation and AAAS have come to an agreement that will allow all Gates Foundation funded research to be published with a CC-BY license in Science, Science Translational Medicine, Science Signaling, Science Advances, Science Immunology, and Science Robotics. This now puts Science journals in line with the Gates Foundation open access policy and gives Gates funded researchers an option to publish in those journals.

It’s great to see funders using their leverage to promote greater access to scientific articles. It will be interesting to see if other publishers end up coming to similar agreements with Gates, and if other funders try a similar route in providing access to their funded-research.

The agreement includes a $100,000 payment to Science to help offset any lost revenues with the CC-BY license. The Gates Foundation anticipates publishing between 10-15 studies in AAAS journals in 2017, so that works out to $6,666 to $10,000 per article/study. Pretty pricey when you compare it to APC costs.

Here’s the announcements about the agreement. It’s interesting to note the differences between them.

AAAS announcement: http://www.sciencemag.org/about/aaas-and-gates-foundation-partnership-announcement

Gates Foundation announcement: https://medium.com/bill-melinda-gates-foundation/taking-steps-to-expand-access-to-high-quality-scientific-publishing-6db7a6bfe9be#.8zh9w2xwl

Nature News: http://www.nature.com/news/science-journals-permit-open-access-publishing-for-gates-foundation-scholars-1.21486?WT.mc_id=TWT_NatureNews

Next brown bag discussion is about misinformation and fake news

Please join us for our next brown bag discussion on Friday, Feb. 17th, at 12:00pm in PCL Learning Lab 2. We’ll be discussing misinformation, fake news, and the abundance of information available online. We’ll supply some donuts to help fuel the discussion.

Please read this article in advance of our discussion:

Anderson, Kent. (2016, Nov. 17). How’s That “Abundance” Thing Working Out For You?. The Scholarly Kitchen

And consider these discussion prompts:

  • Do you feel technology platforms (like Facebook, Twitter, etc.) that host information created and shared by users have a responsibility to verify information being shared on those platforms?
  • What inferences might you make about the author’s agenda or bias? What about the publisher (The Scholarly Kitchen)?
  • The author asserts that “[t]he Fourth Estate is a shadow of what it once was thanks to abundance.” Do you agree or disagree with this statement, and why?

If you are interested in this topic and would like to read more, here are a few other suggested readings:

Allcott, H., & Gentzkow, M. (2017, Jan.). Social Media and Fake News in the 2016 Election. Working Paper.

Kolowich, Steve. (2017, Jan. 16). The Fine Art of Sniffing Out Crappy Science. The Chronicle of Higher Education.

Stanford History Education Group. (2016, Nov. 22). Evaluating Information: The Cornerstone of Civic Online Reasoning. Executive Summary. 

Many thanks to our iSchool co-hosts, Ashley Morrison and Kelsey Belcher, and to SASI for co-sponsoring the event!

 

 

UT Austin sets up PeerJ account

UT Austin has joined as institutional plan members of PeerJ. PeerJ publishes open access articles in the biological, medical, and computer sciences. They also host a preprint repository where authors can share a draft of an article for free.

PeerJ and PeerJ Computer Science offer fast publishing turnaround (median of 27 days to first decision for peer-reviewed articles), and they allow authors to maintain their copyright through a CC-BY license.

Our institutional plan is a deposit account that pays the entire article processing charge for UT Austin-affiliated authors; $995 for PeerJ and $795 for PeerJ Computer Science. We’ve deposited $9540, and once that money runs out we’ll reevaluate and may choose to add more money to the account.

The library is committed to making information widely available to those who need it, and participating in PeerJ is one way for us to make it easier for UT Austin authors to do the same.

If you have questions about the UT Austin institutional plan for PeerJ, please contact Colleen Lyon at c dot lyon at austin dot utexas dot edu.

 

Top OA author

In celebration of Open Access Week 2016, we’d like to highlight our top OA author, Dr. Chandra Bhat. Dr. Bhat, a Professor in the Dept. of Civil, Architectural and Environmental Engineering and Director of the Center for Transportation Research, has more articles in our online archive, Texas ScholarWorks (TSW), than anyone else. He has archived an amazing 169 articles, and those articles have been downloaded a total of 26,806 times! Congratulations Dr. Bhat for being a leader in making your work openly available.

For more information about Dr. Bhat’s research, please see his website.

To browse and read Dr. Bhat’s articles, go to Texas ScholarWorks, click on Browse Authors, and type in Bhat.

If you are affiliated with UT Austin and are interested in making your work more available, please contact us at tsw@utlists.utexas.edu.

UT Libraries institute OA policy

AUSTIN, Texas—The University of Texas Libraries has taken the first step to institute an open access policy for staff at The University of Texas at Austin.

A modest plan to induce Libraries staff to deposit articles and conference papers into Texas ScholarWorks, the university’s digital repository, was recently approved by Provost Maurie McInnis.

The policy applies only to UT Libraries staff, and is non-exclusive meaning that staff are free to continue submitting work to outside publishing organizations in tandem with submissions to the local repository. It is immediately effective and does not apply to previously published or authored materials.

Open access is an international movement that has the goal of making all peer-reviewed published scholarship available free of charge to the public and to the global scholarly community, and involves the promotion and adoption of open access (scholarly publications and collections), open data (research data) and open educational resources (open textbooks).

Before coming to the university in 2014, Libraries Director and Vice Provost Lorraine Haricombe was instrumental in implementing a faculty-led open access policy at Kansas University — the first public institution in the U.S. with such a policy. Haricombe brings her advocacy for the expansion of OA to her position at the UT Libraries.

“Adoption of open access policies at the Libraries has been a priority since the first day I stepped foot on the Forty Acres,” explains Haricombe.

“The UT Libraries is committed to the open agenda and to making the results of scholarly inquiry more accessible and available to those who want them,” says Haricombe. “The implementation of a policy to guide our staff is a first signal of intent to broaden the scope of an open agenda for the Libraries, and hopefully, the university.”

For more information, contact: Travis Willmann, University of Texas Libraries, 512-495-4644.

Open Access Week 2016

Knowledge unfortunately isn’t free.

Much of the research being conducted at universities, colleges, and institutes around the world is written up by professors, graduate students, and research associates and published in toll-access (subscription) journals. Anyone lacking a subscription to that journal will not be able to access the articles published there. This creates a serious access problem for many people across the globe.

An alternative method of publishing, called Open Access, is gaining in popularity and it allows for anyone to read the results of research for free.

Why should I care?

The short version:

expensive journals = less access to research results, especially for those outside of wealthy higher-ed institutions

less access = less research being done and/or research not happening quickly because of access barriers

The long version:

Most scholarly work is currently published through toll-access journals. The work is given to the journals for free by researchers and faculty at colleges and universities – they do this in exchange for the prestige that comes with publishing their work. Many times the research being described in the journals was funded by public agencies such as the National Science Foundation and the National Institutes of Health. These journals charge a subscription fee for access to the articles they publish. Sometimes the subscription fees are quite reasonable and other times they are outrageously expensive. At most colleges and universities, the Library assumes responsibility for the subscription and for providing access.

For students, researchers, and faculty at wealthy institutions this arrangement has worked relatively well for the past 100+ years. For those researchers at less-wealthy institutions or those unaffiliated with a college or university, it has created an access barrier that makes research difficult. Without a subscription to a journal, a researcher needs to try contacting colleagues at other institutions that do have a subscription or needs to email the authors to see if they will send a copy. These techniques are not always successful which means those researchers are left without access to information they need.

In addition, costs for scholarly journals have been rising rapidly at rates outpacing what libraries can anticipate and plan for based on the inflation rate.  This has created an unfortunate situation in which libraries have to cancel some journal subscriptions and purchase fewer books each year in order to keep up with price increases for the journal subscriptions that are considered critical to maintain.

What is Open Access?

Open Access (OA) is the free, immediate, online availability to works without significant copyright or licensing restrictions. Put another way, it means access to scholarly and creative works without price and permission barriers.

There are two main routes to OA:

  • publish in an open access journal – this means the work is freely available from the moment of publication. This is sometimes called gold open access.
  • Deposit a copy of your work in a freely available archive – this generally happens either at the time of publication or after publication. This is sometimes called green open access.

What can I do?

As a student you can support OA by asking your professors if they publish their work openly – either in open access journals or in an openly available archive. You can also deposit your own work in the University of Texas at Austin online archive called Texas ScholarWorks.

As a researcher or faculty member you can publish your work in an open access journal, and/or you can deposit copies of your work in Texas ScholarWorks. And, you can start discussions in your department about how faculty and researchers are evaluated for promotion and tenure.

For anyone at UT:

  • Stop by booths we’ll have set up during Open Access Week. We’ll have button-making machines, swag, and enthusiastic librarians who can answer your OA-related questions.
    • Tuesday, Oct. 25th, from 5:30-7:30pm in the Architecture Library
    • Wednesday, Oct. 26th, from 12:00-2:00pm at PCL
    • Thursday, Oct. 27th, from 1:00-3:00pm in the Fine Arts Library
  • Tweet about open access using #openaccess
  • Read about, write about, and talk about open access

What is Texas ScholarWorks?

Texas ScholarWorks (TSW) is an online archive managed by UT Libraries. The goal of TSW is to provide open, online access to the products of the University’s research and scholarship and to preserve these works for future generations. TSW is highly indexed by Google and managed by the Libraries for long-term preservation. It’s easy for members of the UT Austin community (faculty, researchers, students, and staff) to share their work through TSW. Simply check out the FAQs or send an email to tsw at utlists dot utexas dot edu for information about how to submit.

Year of Open events

The Year of Open is a joint effort by the University of Texas Libraries and Texas Learning Sciences to raise the profile of open content on the campus of The University of Texas at Austin, in the city of Austin, and in the surrounding area.

During the 2015-2016 academic year we hosted four speakers who talked about open education, digital technologies in higher education, and the reproducibility of research. We are working to make sure all event videos are available via our online archive, Texas ScholarWorks.

David Wiley, Sept. 29, 2015: The Future is Now and It’s Open

David Ernst, Nov. 5, 2015: Open Textbooks: Access, Affordability, and Academic Success

John Ioannidis, April 15, 2016: Performing, communicating and rewarding reproducible research

Randy Bass, May 10, 2016: Higher Education in the New Digital Ecosystem

Our Year of Open events (version 2.0) continued into the 2016-2017 academic year. Our first speaker was Clifford Lynch who talked about challenges and changes within the scholarly communication system. This video will be uploaded soon.

Please stay tuned for further information about Year of Open version 2.0 events.

 

UT Austin supports OLH

UT Austin has joined an international consortium of libraries in supporting the Open Library of Humanities (OLH). OLH is a charitable organization that publishes open access humanities scholarship without charging any article processing charges. The costs of publication are supported by a consortium of over 190 partner libraries. OLH publishes in many humanities fields, including: classics, modern languages and cultures, philosophy, theology and history, political theory, sociology, anthropology, film and media studies, and digital humanities. We are excited to participate in this OA publishing model.

If you have any questions about our membership, please contact Colleen Lyon (c dot lyon at austin dot utexas dot edu) or your subject liaison.