Copyright and licensing of scientific data, internationally, are complex and present legal barriers to data sharing, integration and reuse, and therefore restrict the most efficient transfer and discovery of scientific knowledge. Much data are included within scientific journal articles, their published tables, additional files (supplementary material) and reference lists. However, these data are usually published under licenses which are not appropriate for data.
Creative Commons CC0 is an appropriate and increasingly accepted method for dedicating data to the public domain, to enable data reuse with the minimum of restrictions. BioMed Central is committed to working towards implementation of open data-compliant licensing in its publications. Here we detail a protocol for implementing a combined Creative Commons Attribution license (for copyrightable material) and Creative Commons CC0 waiver (for data) agreement for content published in peer-reviewed open access journals.
We explain the differences between legal requirements for attribution in copyright, and cultural requirements in scholarship for giving individuals credit for their work through citation. We argue that publishing data in scientific journals under CC0 will have numerous benefits for individuals and society, and yet will have minimal implications for authors and minimal impact on current publishing and research workflows.
We provide practical examples and definitions of data types, such as XML and tabular data, and specific secondary use cases for published data, including text mining, reproducible research, and open bibliography. We believe this proposed change to the current copyright and licensing structure in science publishing will help clarify what users — people and machines — of the published literature can do, legally, with journal articles and make research using the published literature more efficient.
We further believe this model could be adopted across multiple publishers, and invite comment on this article from all stakeholders in scientific research.
URL : http://www.biomedcentral.com/1756-0500/5/494/abstract
This book brings together essays by academics, librarians, entrepreneurs, activists and policy makers, who were all part of the EU-funded Communia project. Together the authors argue that the Public Domain — that is, the informational works owned by all of us, be that literature, music, the output of scientific research, educational material or public sector information — is fundamental to a healthy society.
The essays range from more theoretical papers on the history of copyright and the Public Domain, to practical examples and case studies of recent projects that have engaged with the principles of Open Access and Creative Commons licensing.
The book is essential reading for anyone interested in the current debate about copyright and the Internet. It opens up discussion and offers practical solutions to the difficult question of the regulation of culture at the digital age.
URL : http://www.communia-association.org/wp-content/uploads/the_digital_public_domain.pdf
The Creative Commons (CC) licenses are a suite of copyright-based licenses defining terms for the distribution and re-use of creative works. CC provides licenses for different use cases and includes open content licenses such as the Attribution license (CC BY, used by many Open Access scientific publishers) and the Attribution Share Alike license (CC BY-SA, used by Wikipedia, for example). However, the license suite also contains non-free and non-open licenses like those containing a “non-commercial” (NC) condition.
Although many people identify “non-commercial” with “non-profit”, detailed analysis reveals that significant differences exist and that the license may impose some unexpected re-use limitations on works thus licensed. After providing background information on the concepts of Creative Commons licenses in general, this contribution focuses on the NC condition, its advantages, disadvantages and appropriate scope. Specifically, it contributes material towards a risk analysis for potential re-users of NC-licensed works.
URL : http://zookeys.pensoft.net/articles.php?id=3036
« Here is an operational manual which guides creators step by step in the world of Creative Commons licenses, the most famous and popular licenses for free distribution of intellectual products. Without neglecting useful conceptual clarifications, the author goes into technical details of the tools offered by Creative Commons, thus making them also understandable for total neophytes. This is a fundamental book for all those who are interested in the opencontent and copyleft world.
The author: Simone Aliprandi is an Italian lawyer and researcher who is constantly engaged in writing and consulting in the field of copyright and ICT law. He founded and still coordinates the Copyleft-Italia.it project and has published numerous books devoted to openculture and copyleft. This is his first publishing in English.
This is an independent publishing project: the book is completely edited by the author and published online and by a self-publishing service (Lulu.com). Thanks to the CC license applied you can download it for free, but if you want to support and promote this kind of cultural production please consider to buy a paper version. »
URL : http://www.aliprandi.org/cc-user-guide/index.html
Owning the Right to Open Up Access to Scientific Publications :
« Whether the researchers themselves, rather than the institution they work for, are at all in a position to implement OA principles actually depends on the initial allocation of rights on their works. Whereas most European Union Member States have legislation that provides that the copyright owner is the natural person who created the work, the copyright laws of a number European countries, including those of the Netherlands and the United Kingdom, establish a presumption, according to which the copyright of works made in the course of employment belongs initially to the employer, which in this case would be the university. In France, a similar presumption applies to works created by employees of the State. Even if researchers are in a position to exercise the rights on their works, they may, nevertheless, be required to transfer these to a publisher in order to get their article or book published. This paper, therefore, analyses the legal position of researchers, research institutions and publishers respectively, and considers what the consequences are for the promotion of OA publishing in light of the principles laid down in the Berlin Declaration and the use of Creative Commons licenses. »
URL : http://papers.ssrn.com/sol3/papers.cfm?abstract_id=1829889
Creative Commons and Public Sector Information: Flexible tools to support PSI creators and re-users :
« Public sector information (PSI) is meant for wide re-use, but this information will only achieve maximum possible impact if users understand how they may use it. Creative Commons tools, which signify availability for re-use to users and require attribution to the releasing authority, are ideal tools for the sharing of public sector information. There is also increasing interest in open licenses and other tools to share publicly funded information, data, and content, including various kinds of cultural resources, educational materials, and research findings; Creative Commons tools are applicable here and recommended for these purposes too. »
URL : http://www.epsiplus.net/topic_reports/creative_commons_and_public_sector_information_flexible_tools_to_support_psi_creators_and_re_users
Friends or Foes? Creative Commons, Freedom of Information Law and the EU Framework for Re-Use of Public Sector Information :
« Public authorities keep vast amounts of information. Freedom of information (‘FOIA’) laws give the public rights of access to much public sector information. The spread of FOIAs across the globe testifies to their importance as instruments for enhancing democratic accountability. But access to public sector information not only serves political purposes. It is also thought to have economic benefits, enabling the development of new information products and services. This is the policy objective behind the EU Directive 2003/98 on the Re-use of Public Sector Information (PSI Directive).
Despite popular belief to the contrary, much public sector information is subject to intellectual property rights. Both access to public sector information for democratic purposes and for economic purposes have implications for how intellectual property rights in information produced by governments are exercised. Rather curiously perhaps, FOIA’s are generally silent on the issue. Nor does the PSI Directive prescribe how public sector bodies should exercise any exlcusive rights in information. This paper explores the role of copyright policy in the light of the objectives and principles of both freedom of information law and the regulatory framework for re-use of public sector information. More specifically, it queries whether open content licenses like Creative Commons are indeed the attractive instrument they appear to be for public sector bodies that seek to enhance transparent access to their information, be it for purposes of democratic accountability or re-use for economic or other uses. »
URL : http://papers.ssrn.com/sol3/papers.cfm?abstract_id=1722189