Re: Nature's vs. Science's Embargo Policy

From: Stevan Harnad <>
Date: Fri, 10 Jan 2003 03:32:08 +0000

On Thu, 9 Jan 2003, Michael Eisen wrote:

> NATURE: "How can I show my article to my colleagues? By sending a link
> to the paper on your website. You may not distribute the PDF by email,
> on listservs or on open archives. Please remember that although the
> content of the article is your copyright, its presentation (i.e. its
> typographical layout as a printed page) remains our copyright."

That's just fine! Run the PDF through a PDF-to-HTML converter, reformat it
trivially, and the layout is yours! (These details are utterly *trivial*,
Mike, whereas the nontrivial, substantive part -- you may put your
refereed postprint on the web -- is *all* that was ever needed!)

But I do believe they must have stopped giving lawyers logic courses any
more as part of their degree! "You may not distribute the PDF by email.
Send a link to it on your website instead." Gimme a break!

And "You may not put it in an 'open archive' but only on a personal
website?" So my personal website is not allowed to be OAI-compliant?

This is all papyrophilic juribabble based on defunct anlogies with bygone
days and ways! It makes no sense. It is as technologically innocent
as it is blissfully free of logic. How can anyone even pretend to take
it seriously?

"Your honour, the defendant's computer transferred this open-access document
through the asynchronous sendmail protocol instead of synchronous
HTTP: Throw the book at him please." (Not to mention that this level
of monitoring would require something even more intrusive than the
Patriot Act!)

> If somehow authors construe this as a license to self-archive, that's great.
> But lets not give Nature credit for something they have not done.

On the contrary, I think it's a very *good* strategy to give Nature full
credit for what they have done -- to encourage the other journals to
hurry up and do likewise!

Cheers (and cheer up!),

Received on Fri Jan 10 2003 - 03:32:08 GMT

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