While there's no doubt that copyright licensing is a mess that is often holding back key innovations online, it's a bit worrisome to hear about how the EU Commission is exploring the issue. It has set up a "Licenses for Europe" campaign, but designed in a way that locks in a predetermined conclusion that the only way to deal with locked up content in Europe is to get the big copyright holders to agree to more easily determined licenses. Again, this is not necessarily a bad thing, but it ignores the larger picture: including the fact that most content produced today is coming from individuals and not as a part of a larger industry.
Planeta readers are motivated by noble ideas that have inspired the movements for responsible travel, conscious travel and ecotourism. But academic articles and books remain behind pay walls. During the 2010 European Ecotourism Conference I asked one of the professors, why we should cite his work if it remained behind a pay wall. Immediately I got the feeling that academics do not like being asked such questions.
Last year, the German government commissioned a fairly extensive study (Link) on open data, and started preparations for an open government data portal. The open data community felt somewhat relieved. After all, lobbying for more open government in Germany, the cradle of prussian bureaucracy, is not exactly an easy task. This is a state apparatus dominated by information silos, dusty hierarchies, pen and paper workflows and an attitude towards citizens that often borders on arrogant. Bravo to the few change agents within the Federal Ministry on the Interior, who over the last months and years have closely collaboratored with a multitude of actors, including app contests and bar camps.
Open Access to research publications involves making them freely available online rather than charging readers to read and use them. Open Access to research data makes data more widely available for re-use by others to support research, innovation and wider public use.
The University has been operating under funder mandates for Open Access to publications for several years. The Wellcome Trust makes a block grant available for the payment of Article Processing Charges and both Wellcome and a number of other life-sciences funders require article deposit in Europe PubMed Central - an Open Access repository.
In response to the Finch report, RCUK announced a revised Open Access policy on 16 July 2012. The policy requires all RCUK-funded publications submitted for publication after 1 April 2013 to adopt either of the two OA models described below. The Government will provide the University with £1.15 million to be spent on Article Processing Charges (APCs) to pay for research to be published in Open Access journals under the Gold Open Access scheme.
HEFCE has promised a consultation on Open Access implementation early in 2013. The 2014 REF is not affected, but subsequent REFs may have Open Access requirements.
There’s been a lot of buzz about open data over the past couple of years in Amsterdam. The city has put significant investment and energy into making data available and raising awareness–through sponsored app contests, hackathons, forums, and software development kits.
These efforts are great for stimulating discussion about open data, and some interesting apps have been created. But actually making money with open data is still experimental, and we have yet to see truly viable businesses and products come from it.
So to help bring the open data potential to the next level,Appsterdam is launching an initiative to work with three local start-ups to support them in making successful businesses using open data.
Way back in October, 2012, during Open Access Week, the Scholarly Communications Group announced an initiative to help JHU authors publish their articles in Open Access journals.
Now we need your help (yes, you!) to spread the word. Only 9 savvy and knowledgeable JHU authors have received money from the JH Libraries Open Access Promotion Fund. There should be more! Authors supported by NIH grants HAVE to make sure their articles are freely available to all within 12 months of publication.
If you had 10 million pounds to spend on open data research, development and startups, what would you do with it? That’s precisely the opportunity that Gavin Starks (@AgentGav) has been given as the first CEO of the Open Data Institute (ODI) in the United Kingdom.
The ODI, which officially opened last September, was founded by Sir Tim Berners-Lee and Professor Nigel Shadbolt. The independent, non-partisan, “limited by guarantee” nonprofit is a hybrid institution focused on unlocking the value in open data by incubating startups, advising governments, and educating students and media.
Previously, Starks was the founder and chairman of AMEE, a social enterprise that scored environmental costs and risks for businesses. (O’Reilly’s AlphaTech Ventures was one of its funders.) He’s also worked in the arts, science and technology. I spoke to Starks about the work of the ODI and open data earlier this winter as part of our continuing series investigating the open data economy.
Academics are — slowly — adopting the view that publicly funded research should be made freely available. But data released yesterday suggest that, given the choice, even researchers who publish in open-access journals want to place restrictions on how their papers can be re-used —for example, sold by others for commercial profit.
Paris, like many other French cities, has a network of bicycle stations called Velib, where people with (very cheap) subscriptions can take a bike for free for as long as a half-hour. However, up until now, the data of what stations are full of available bikes, and which have space to put one back, was not open, and the overall information available to users pretty basic. This is all changing this spring (FR)!
Following the launch of ‘Translational Bioinformatics’, a PLOS Computational Biology collection presented as an online book, in December 2012, PLOS Computational Biology Founding Editor-in-Chief Phil Bourne discusses how open access can boost the availability and prominence of book chapters.
Enter to win £500/$750, have your work judged by Nature Biotechnology editors Dr Lisa Melton and Dr Laura DeFrancesco, and be published on the Roundtable Review.
We are looking for talented writers who can write clearly and succinctly about a topic relating to the life sciences in 500-1000 words. The article must not have been previously published (professionally), and anyone from high school students to professional entrepreneurs is welcome to participate. No more than one article per person will be considered.
Well, while some regions pursue closed approaches to access to information, there is an ongoing federal effort to actually spread openness when it comes to information and Moscow IT Department is one of the leading bodies in this regard. One of their latest projects is a spin on the "Open Data" principle and it's not like anything else they've ever done before - it's more of a meta-project, really. If before they've launched services aimed mostly at consumers - citizens of Moscow trying to solve their everyday problems, then this one has developers in mind. As the name suggests, it has something to do with data - official data released by federal and municipal administrative bodies.
In the UK, the JISC organization has long pioneered the exploration of different models of open access and, in particular, the role of institutional repositories. Although JISC’s future is now somewhat uncertain because of the recent change in its funding status to that of a charity, JISC is seen internationally as a major innovator in the use of advanced ICT in higher education. In Europe, only the Dutch SURF organization can match the breadth and originality of JISC programs. Such an innovative ‘applied research’ funding agency is lacking in the US—although the role of JISC is partially met by organizations such as the Mellon Foundation.
Gestern hat die Stadt Köln ein neues Datenangebot veröffentlicht: Eine API zum Abruf der aktuellen Verkehrsauslastung auf wichtigen Kölner Straßen. Dass diese Daten existieren, könnte dem einen oder anderen von der Stadt Köln Smartphone-App oder auch von dieser Seite bekannt sein. Diese Daten stehen nun unter CC-BY-Lizenz der Öffentlichkeit zur Verfügung.
At present the European Parliament, the Commission and the Council are negotiating in a “Trialogue” the final legislative text of the “Rules of Participation” for Horizon 2020, the 80 billion euro EU Framework for research and innovation. Under great industry pressure, organized by publishers and “Business Europe”, a number of EU member states are pushing for the removal of “mandatory open access” of EU financed published research results and many EU member states in the Council are also questioning the promotion of “open data” in H2020 as adopted by the European Parliament.
Also being placed into doubt by industry lobbyists are some proposed flexible licensing schemes in H2020 by which some research results could be exploited by the EU and member states.
The recent debate about the government proposals to restrict access to the personal information of company directors has been one-sided, so it is useful to re-examine the arguments carefully to see which elements, if any, of the proposals are justified, taking into account press freedom, access to information and privacy.
While the open content movement in education continues to gain steam, more teachers are starting to learn about free content they can use and adapt to their own needs for their classrooms.
But educators are focusing too heavily on acquiring content, rather than contributing and improving to it, according to a company that helps teachers and students access open education resources.
“People often hear the content piece rather than the open piece,” said Bill Fitzgerald, the founder of FunnyMonkey, a Portland, Ore.-based open educational resources company, during a presentation at Educon 2.5. “And it shifts [an understanding] about what open content is.”
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