Re: Public Access to Science Act (Sabo Bill, H.R. 2613)

From: David Goodman <>
Date: Fri, 5 Sep 2003 17:15:03 +0100

I think publishers would publish texts to which the copyright owner gave
them an irrevocable nonexclusive license to publish in all media, which
is all they need for STM journals. Subsidiary rights do not come into
play for the sort of material we are discussing, nor does the possibility
that someone else might distribute the author's text at a later date.
For scholarly journals, it's the first publication that counts.

I suggest we may be making s serious mistake to extend the work-for-hire
concept. I suggest we have extended it too far already in this field
when it apply it to government authors. (I am not now talking about
patent rights, just copyright)

In a sense all intellectual work in a university is supported by the
public, either by direct grants or by tax exemptions. But this support,
though surely essential, is merely the provision and maintenance of the
facilities, and the salaries of the people. The public does not do the
creative work.

The creator should own the copyright, and the terms of support, or
perhaps the law itself, should limit the rights he can transfer. (I
realize I am not talking about slight changes in the Anglo-American
copyright system as now interpreted, so the lawyers in the audience will
please excuse me for not providing details.)

Similarly, I suggest we should not permit academic institutions or
research institutes to claim ownership of their faculty's lectures,
online or otherwise. The lectures can and should belong solely to the
faculty; as do their books and papers. The faculty are hired on the
expectation they will produce them, and will not be retained if they do
not. The university employer gets its share by having the faculty
deliver the lectures, or publish the books and papers from the
institution's address, thus enhancing its reputation and attracting
junior scholars. If the faculty leave, their course material goes with
them. A new faculty member can and should be expected to prepare his

The University of Phoenix model is not appropriate to an institution of
higher learning, and its analogies are not suitable for academic

Dr. David Goodman
Associate Professor,
Palmer School of Library and Information Science
Long Island University, Brookville, NY

-----Original Message-----
From: Sally Morris []=20
Sent: Friday, September 05, 2003 9:17 AM
Subject: Re: Public Access to Science Act (Sabo Bill, H.R. 2613)

Stevan Harnad wrote:

"Most of the existing 24,000 journals would not
accept to publish public-domain texts"

I think this is probably inaccurate. I would guess that practically
all of
those journals do publish works which are currently governed by the
Domain status of US Government works.

To my mind, the question really is whether either the authors or their
employer actually do anything to avail themselves of the works' Public
Domain status. No one seems to have been able to answer this question.

If they don't, why should the Sabo Bill's extension of identical status
Federally funded works, in itself, be expected to achieve anything for
Open Access agenda?


Sally Morris, Secretary-General
Association of Learned and Professional Society Publishers
South House, The Street, Clapham, Worthing, West Sussex BN13 3UU, UK

Phone: 01903 871686 Fax: 01903 871457 E-mail:
ALPSP Website
Received on Fri Sep 05 2003 - 17:15:03 BST

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