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Scientist Must Pay to Read His Own Paper

samzenpus posted more than 6 years ago | from the who-own-paper-town dept.

Education 289

Glyn Moody writes "Peter Murray Rust, a chemist at Cambridge University, was lost for words when he found Oxford University Press's website demanded $48 from him to access his own scientific paper, in which he holds copyright and which he released under a Creative Commons license. As he writes, the journal in question was "selling my intellectual property, without my permission, against the terms of the license (no commercial use)." In the light of this kind of copyright abuse and of the PRISM Coalition, a new FUD group set up by scientific publishers to discredit open access, isn't it time to say enough is enough, and demand free access to the research we pay for through our taxes?"

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UbuntuDupe Untangling Squad (3, Insightful)

UbuntuDupe (970646) | more than 6 years ago | (#20465177)

1) Just because it's released under CC, doesn't mean that people must give you a copy of it for free on demand. It just means that the author has permitted people to copy it without his explicit approval. He should still be able to get it from someone else who doesn't want to charge him. Now, if he released the paper on the condition that no one ever charge for it, he has a case against OUP (for violating the license), but he's not being "denied access to his own paper"; it's just that one of many authorized providers simply isn't providing it. (Am I being "denied access to Jane Austen" when website #2938093583 won't email her works to me for free?)

2) If publishers are really contributing nothing to academic publishing, and just charge high prices and force you to sign away your rights (which I think is a fair characterization), here's a crazy idea: stop publishing through them! Set up your own journals and charge nothing or a token amount for access. If scientists are so bigoted they only deign to acknowledge work published in overpriced, unnecessary, exploitative publishers' journals, the problem is on the scientists' end.

3) Yes, it would be nice if no publicly funded worker could ever hold any exclusive IP in their intellectual works. However, this would mean less intellectual work production by them. It's a tradeoff like any other.

Oh, and

4) Why did OUP ever accept it if it were labled as CC?

And (2, Insightful)

everphilski (877346) | more than 6 years ago | (#20465321)

5) Unless he's careless about backups, he has a damn copy on his computer at home. He can read his paper for free.

But the real meat-and-potatoes is point #2. You chose to submit it to said journal. Live with the consequences. (I don't condemn publishing in journals - but they aren't the only method of getting the word out, and after submitting your article to a journal it certainly does not curtail you from sharing results with others via other avenues)

Re:And (4, Informative)

mikael (484) | more than 6 years ago | (#20465819)

I am sure that if he went in to see the library staff, they would be able to give him an Athens login account [athensams.net] , and that would allow him to to read his article for free. These are free for any staff or student who is working at a UK university.

This seems to be more of an issue of central services not being informed of which journals they should be subscribing to.

Re:UbuntuDupe Untangling Squad (5, Insightful)

eln (21727) | more than 6 years ago | (#20465327)

Now, if he released the paper on the condition that no one ever charge for it, he has a case against OUP (for violating the license), but he's not being "denied access to his own paper"


The summary states that his license stipulates no commercial use. Charging anything for the paper beyond your own costs for providing it (a nominal bandwidth and storage fee, perhaps) is commercial use. On the face of it, OUP is violating the license.

If publishers are really contributing nothing to academic publishing, and just charge high prices and force you to sign away your rights (which I think is a fair characterization), here's a crazy idea: stop publishing through them! Set up your own journals and charge nothing or a token amount for access


That's a great theory, but then you get every scientist posting his research to his blog. In scientific circles, the idea of "peer-reviewed" research is very important. If you are not publishing in a well known and widely-read journal, you are not likely to get a whole lot of your peers to even read the research much less try to duplicate your results. Without duplication, scientific results are damn near useless.

Yes, it would be nice if no publicly funded worker could ever hold any exclusive IP in their intellectual works. However, this would mean less intellectual work production by them. It's a tradeoff like any other.


Most academic types do the research for its own sake, not necessarily to make money directly from it. These people tend to make money by writing books about their research, conducting lectures on it, and using it on their resumes to get nice tenured positions. It's usually the universities that make all the money selling it to private industry.

Why did OUP ever accept it if it were labled as CC?


I would be surprised if they even read the license at all.

Re:UbuntuDupe Untangling Squad (0)

UbuntuDupe (970646) | more than 6 years ago | (#20465519)

The summary states that his license stipulates no commercial use. Charging anything for the paper beyond your own costs for providing it (a nominal bandwidth and storage fee, perhaps) is commercial use. On the face of it, OUP is violating the license.
Yes, I was just objecting to the summary's characterization that he's being "denied access to his paper", though I guess I should be numb to /. sensationalism by now.

That's a great theory, but then you get every scientist posting his research to his blog.
Strawman. My altnerative was not "put your papers on your blog". It was "have a peer-reviewed journal that cuts out the middleman".

If you are not publishing in a well known and widely-read journal, you are not likely to get a whole lot of your peers to even read the research much less try to duplicate your results.
Sure, and that's a fault of scientists, not publishers. If you refuse to read something because it was "merely" peer-reviewed by a committee of respectable scientists that didn't have Kluwer's blessing, you are the problem, not Kluwer.

Most academic types do the research for its own sake, not necessarily to make money directly from it.
Then why don't scientists all work for free? The more that *can* be made, the more people you'll draw, and the more output you'll generate, because you pull in the marginal cases. Just the law of supply at work.

Re:UbuntuDupe Untangling Squad (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#20465543)

"The summary states that his license stipulates no commercial use. Charging anything for the paper beyond your own costs for providing it (a nominal bandwidth and storage fee, perhaps) is commercial use."

I could make a nice analogy and a nasty analogy, but as it's late in the day and I need to go to the loo I shall make a nasty one:

even if a large organisation is "not for profit", then out of moneys donated to a specific cause, they can (or at least they do, and noone complains) still legitimately withhold administrative, audit, tax and permanent employee costs, rather than solely deducting the fee the bank charges to wire the proceeds.

In this specific case you would need to consider the costs of not only providing it, but of all the administrative structures that support the provision (including e.g. the costs to paralegals who consider the implications of licensing agreements), and the fact that your customer base is rather small.

His license doesn't matter (3, Informative)

everphilski (877346) | more than 6 years ago | (#20465553)

In order to get published, you have to sign off on Oxford Journal's License to Publish:

here [oxfordjournals.org]

and I quote:

"You agree that OUP may include the Article in an "open access" version of the Journal subject to payment of the relevant 'open access' fee or submission of a valid fee-waiver form."

You have to sign this piece of paper to submit the article. Obviously, he (or a coauthor?) did, so from my read he gave them explicit permission to seek payment.

Re:His license doesn't matter (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#20465823)

Thanks, I was about to point that out. I guess there's a off chance that someone else submitted his paper to the OUP (department head or some such), in which case his righteous indingnation is misdirected, but more than likely he didn't bother to read what he was agreeing to.

Re:UbuntuDupe Untangling Squad (2, Interesting)

Xiaran (836924) | more than 6 years ago | (#20465637)

That's a great theory, but then you get every scientist posting his research to his blog. In scientific circles, the idea of "peer-reviewed" research is very important

Then why can not say a groups of universities get together and develop their own international web journal of all sciences(TM). Im thikning something like slashdot(only much more rigorous on access and content submission). You could have "moderators" who would be like experts in the field the paper is written for. Interested observers who have expertise in a related field etc. You could even have a system where people could be sponsored by other to be experts(Im thinking amateur astronomers who make many contributions to astronomy but may not have a related degree).

Wasnt this kinda thing the reason for the invention of HTML in the first place?

Re:UbuntuDupe Untangling Squad (1)

eln (21727) | more than 6 years ago | (#20465791)

Not a bad idea, but I suspect when you get a bunch of big institutions involved, they're eventually going to try and make money off it, and then you end up with another big journal that charges people for access just like you have now.

Re:UbuntuDupe Untangling Squad (2, Funny)

mbrod (19122) | more than 6 years ago | (#20465841)

I think Slashdot should actually do it.

"scholar.slashdot.org"

You could do a number of interesting things to entice the scholarly community to use the service.

Re:UbuntuDupe Untangling Squad (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#20465839)

They aren't banging out these journals on Remington typewriters. The system you're proposing is how journals operate now, all the way down to the layman advisors.

Re:UbuntuDupe Untangling Squad (1)

jpfed (1095443) | more than 6 years ago | (#20465801)

Peer review and outrageously overpriced journals do not have to go hand in hand. Reviewers do their work for free, so it's not out of the question to have a peer-reviewed journal that happened to be distributed for free to anyone that wanted it.

Why did OUP ever accept it if it were labled as CC (1)

benhocking (724439) | more than 6 years ago | (#20465339)

That was exactly my first thought. The only end result I see is OUP being more careful to reject such papers in the future.

Re:UbuntuDupe Untangling Squad (5, Informative)

Virgil Tibbs (999791) | more than 6 years ago | (#20465381)

if you read tfa you will see he is NOT complaining about access to it to read but them selling its redistribution rights despite the licence explicitly pointing out it is NON-commercial redistribution which is allowed....
his issue isn't getting people to publish his article...
his issue is someone selling his work, although the licence does not permit that.

Re:UbuntuDupe Untangling Squad (5, Informative)

kebes (861706) | more than 6 years ago | (#20465443)

Just because it's released under CC, doesn't mean that people must give you a copy of it for free on demand.
True. Except in this case, the author is paying an open-access surcharge. In the blog post [cam.ac.uk] he says: "After all, the author has paid for this". The purpose of the surcharge is to help the journal cover distribution costs, thereby guaranteeing that everyone can read the article. If the journal accepts that publication fee, but then charges readers anyway, isn't that fraud?

Now, if he released the paper on the condition that no one ever charge for it
He did use such a condition. He used a creative commons license with a non-commercial clause, so it's illegal for the publisher to charge people for distribution. Again from his post, he says: "The journal is therefore SELLING MY INTELLECTUAL PROPERTY WITHOUT MY PERMISSION AGAINST THE TERMS OF THE LICENCE (NO COMMERCIAL USE)"

If publishers are really contributing nothing ... stop publishing through them!
The controversy here is precisely that he decided to publish in an open access journal. In fact, you can read about their open access policy here [oxfordjournals.org] , which says: "From 1st January 2005, all articles published in NAR are freely available online immediately upon publication. This means that it is no longer necessary to hold a subscription in order to read current NAR content online."

After paying his >$2000 publication charge, the journal turned around and tried to charge others for access. As he points out, this could have been an innocent mistake on their part. But, it's a violation of the agreement he had with them, and needs to be fixed.

Set up your own journals and charge nothing or a token amount for access. If scientists are so bigoted they only deign to acknowledge work published in overpriced, unnecessary, exploitative publishers' journals, the problem is on the scientists' end.
I don't know if the word "bigoted" is warranted, but I agree that we scientists need to push for open access. Which is what he did, by publishing in an open-access journal.

Re:UbuntuDupe Untangling Squad (3, Informative)

kebes (861706) | more than 6 years ago | (#20465555)

it's a violation of the agreement he had with them, and needs to be fixed.
Sorry to reply to my own comment... but...

The article he couldn't access was this one: "MACiE (Mechanism, Annotation and Classification in Enzymes): novel tools for searching catalytic mechanisms [oxfordjournals.org] " (doi 10.1093/nar/gkl774). I just tried accessing it from a non-subscription IP address, and I was able to load the PDF without issue. All the articles on the page seemed to load without asking for payment.

So, in short, this was probably an innocent mistake and seems to be already fixed.

Re:UbuntuDupe Untangling Squad (4, Informative)

kebes (861706) | more than 6 years ago | (#20465851)

I need to correct myself (again). The article PDF is available for free download, but if you go to the article page [oxfordjournals.org] and click on the "Request permission" link, you're brought to a new page where you can request permission to, for instance, print out copies for use in class. The form then tells you how much you have to pay them for those permissions.

The issue, of course, is that this explicitly violates the creative commons (noncommercial) license that he published under (and which the journal evidently agreed to, in order to be able to post his paper at all). The journal is thus illegally charging others for permissions that are free.

It still looks like a honest mistake. The structure of the website is such that a standard "permissions system" is being applied to a wide range of content for various journals. They seem to be mistakenly applying this system even to the open-access journals in the collection.

Even though this is probably just an honest mistake, it needs to be fixed ASAP. They are presently breaking the law and very much going against the spirit of the agreement that he entered into with them when he published his paper.

Re:UbuntuDupe Untangling Squad (1)

smallfries (601545) | more than 6 years ago | (#20465449)

The author doesn't mention the copyright-transfer form (if any) that he signed. If he refused to sign the copyright transfer form then it is hard to understand how the journal could publish it in the first place. But if he did then he has a fair point as they don't have the right to sell the published form of the paper.

It's nice to hear somebody raising this as a problem because the current system of copyright transfers is a bitch. However, he wants to distribute the paper to his own students - why does he need the printed from the journal? He wrote the original paper, and presumably has the original source for the paper, so why not just print that off instead. He sounds like somebody doing this to try and make a noise, rather than because it is actually hindering him.

Your fourth point is quite interesting, as if they are systematically charging for CC material then they seem to have screwed up.

Re:UbuntuDupe Untangling Squad (0, Flamebait)

Lumpy (12016) | more than 6 years ago | (#20465749)

If scientists are so bigoted they only deign to acknowledge work published in overpriced, unnecessary, exploitative publishers' journals, the problem is on the scientists' end.

It's not scientists, it's the Academic types. upper Academics are full of bigots and always has been. Real geniuses always get panned by them until their research generates a huge uproar ouside their little silly boys club. Einstein, had to deal with the Bigots as well as many MANY other geniuses of our time.

It has always been that way, and is why more and more of the newer science students are going against it and breaking ranks. honestly it should have happened decades ago but they have quite a bit of power over you as a researcher if they do not allow your work to be published in their holy tomes.

Re:UbuntuDupe Untangling Squad (1)

wahgnube (557787) | more than 6 years ago | (#20465859)

Set up your own journals and charge nothing or a token amount for access.

Or, you can use an existing, free, Cornell/NSF-supported e-print repository, arXiv.org [arxiv.org] .

The document is free to read (5, Funny)

LiquidCoooled (634315) | more than 6 years ago | (#20465187)

The document is available to read as both text and pdf.
I understand his worrying, but to me the biggest WTF is:

He works for one Cambridge university, he published his document to its biggest rival (Oxford) and they expect US dollars for a totally English transaction.

I say, off with their heads.

Re:The document is free to read (1)

drunkahol (143049) | more than 6 years ago | (#20465747)

The greater travesty for these bastions of English society would have been a charge in Euros!

D

Two Ideas (1, Insightful)

JamesP (688957) | more than 6 years ago | (#20465189)

1 - If it is your own paper, you surely have a backup somewhere, or a dead tree version of it (maybe a draft, but still)

2 - Sue the fuckers.

Re:Two Ideas (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#20465293)

Wouldn't be able to get a lot of money out of it, as he was giving it away for free his damages would be minimal. Should be able to force them to stop selling it for sure though.

Re:Two Ideas (1)

mabhatter654 (561290) | more than 6 years ago | (#20465401)

If it's creative commons licensed, it should be available from their site for free as well. That's the issue with scientific papers being "fee for view" in a nutshell. The publishers are so used to gathering papers from universities that they just gobbled it up and slapped a price tag on it without even looking at the license. It's their "right" as academic publishers to do this. (just like it's a college student's right to put free-to-air shows on pirate bay! after all the TV station didn't charge for it!)

Re:Two Ideas (1)

everphilski (877346) | more than 6 years ago | (#20465607)

Difference here though is that the author has to fill out a license-to-publish which explicitly states they grant OUP the right to charge for their services. Can't publish in the journal without that form.

Re:Two Ideas (3, Funny)

Bazman (4849) | more than 6 years ago | (#20465537)

I'm guessing you've never seen an academic's desk before...

Re:Two Ideas (2, Informative)

JamesP (688957) | more than 6 years ago | (#20465661)

I'm guessing you've never seen an academic's desk before...

Yes, I have... And they didn't have much trouble finding stuff in it.

No surprise. (1)

SatanicPuppy (611928) | more than 6 years ago | (#20465191)

I'm sure they think that the inordinate burden of, you know, putting it on a website, justifies charging everyone 50 bucks to read it.

What really begs the question is, where the hell does that money go, if not to the author of the article? I'm no lawyer, but I know enough to know that it is wildly illegal to make money off of someone else's copyrighted works without their permission. Time for a nice lawsuit.

Re:No surprise. (1)

AFairlyNormalPerson (721898) | more than 6 years ago | (#20465305)

It's fairly normal practice for the author (or the author's institution)
to pay the publisher for publishing the article - not the other way around.
This, however, isn't paying a kickback, like, "yeah my article sucks, but
here's $100 if you publish it anyways". There are so many articles and
publishers own so many journals that they'd probably go broke. It's not
like this is Reader's Digest; the audience is pretty much limited to
academic institutions.

Re:No surprise. (1)

SatanicPuppy (611928) | more than 6 years ago | (#20465447)

The way copyright works is you offer up a certain number of reproductions and a list of formats to which you are granting the rights for publishing...e.g You sell the first and second printing rights to a company, and they have to come and renegotiate if they want to do a third printing. Now, you can give up all your rights...This is not uncommon, especially these days, but the writer in question specifically states that he maintains the copyright on his work.

Now, either he's mistaken, and there is nothing he can do about it, or he does still own the copyright, and is absolutely entitled to his share of the profits.

Can't he sue them (2, Interesting)

kalirion (728907) | more than 6 years ago | (#20465195)

Can't he sue them for copyright infringement?

YEAH! (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#20465201)

YEAH! Lets rise up and help our fellow nerds!!

This is one case where suing is appropriate (1)

QuesarVII (904243) | more than 6 years ago | (#20465211)

Sue them for the money they have made off your copyrighted work. Should be a slam dunk in court.

I would be pretty upset too (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#20465213)


if someone priced something in dollars to a UK researcher for a UK university in the UK

What Tax Dollars? (1)

Khel (34966) | more than 6 years ago | (#20465229)

Your tax dollars do not pay for vetting of the paper. Vetting the paper by peers is what still makes this a valuable service.

Re:What Tax Dollars? (2, Insightful)

kebes (861706) | more than 6 years ago | (#20465707)

Your tax dollars do not pay for vetting of the paper. Vetting the paper by peers is what still makes this a valuable service.
This argument comes up every time there is an open-access debate. So allow me to address it, again.

The authors write the papers, and do not receive any pay from the journal for that. The journal editors then forward the paper to reviewers. The reviewers are volunteers, not paid by the journal. Then the editors forward the paper (if accepted) to a typesetter, and it is published.

The authors and the reviewers are academics, who basically give their time to the journals. Their salaries come from government grants, from university funds (which come from tuition), and to some extent from corporate collaborations.

The salaries of the editors and typesetters are paid by the journal subscription charges. The subscriptions come primarily from academic libraries in universities or government research institutes. (Which are, again, funded by government grants and university funds.)

So, a very large percent of the money flowing into the journal comes from public funds (taxes). Significantly, the peer reviewers are volunteers, with their actual salaries coming largely from public funds. In a very real sense, our tax dollars are indeed paying for vetting the paper. The "valuable service" of which you speak is not performed by the journal, but by the academics (who do not benefit in any way from the toll-access that the journals impose).

Typical Cambridge whinger (1, Informative)

BadAnalogyGuy (945258) | more than 6 years ago | (#20465235)

First, it's not surprising that Rust is befuddled here. He is a Cambridge professor. You might as well ask a Wellesley grad to explain gender roles.

Second, Oxford isn't selling his work. It's selling access to his work. If he published his work anywhere else under the license which he claims, then that work would still be fully accessible, sans $48.

Stick with the chemistry, doc! Understanding the law isn't for you.

Re:Typical Cambridge whinger (3, Insightful)

Creepy Crawler (680178) | more than 6 years ago | (#20465313)

Well, why dont you try reading what the CC (no commercial benefit) means.

What right does Oxford have to copy his work? If they did not work out a deal with him or his university, they, by default use the CC license.

The CC license he chose has "No Commercial Use" clause. They used it for commercial use, thereby making void their usage of the CC for copyright.

They are in violation of Rust's copyright. Hmm... if Rust can prove they did it in spite of CC (no com use), he probably can get treble damages...

Treble damages = $48 * 3 * n

Big number. Good.

Re:Typical Cambridge whinger (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#20465631)

Well, why dont you try reading what the CC (no commercial benefit) means.
Just because he's released the article under CC, does not mean he hasn't also released it to another group under a commercial license.

What right does Oxford have to copy his work? If they did not work out a deal with him or his university, they, by default use the CC license.
I haven't found the specific article in question, but presumably, he submitted it for publication in an OUP journal. This act include assignment of the right (sometimes, not exclusive) to publish the work to the journal.

It is possible for the same work to be released under multiple licenses to multiple parties, and Rust should not be surprised if OUP is exercising their right to charge of the article under the terms of their copyright assignment.

Re:Typical Cambridge whinger (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#20465655)

Treble damages = $48 * 3 * n
where n > 0 (If he is very lucky)

Re:Typical Cambridge whinger (1)

EveryNickIsTaken (1054794) | more than 6 years ago | (#20465315)

Please tell me that you were wearing a top hat and a monocle when you wrote this post.

Re:Typical Cambridge whinger (1)

B_SharpC (698293) | more than 6 years ago | (#20465581)

Spend $20,000 suing them so you can get your $48 back.
 
Taxpayers are supporting your fanny anyhow. We should be suing his fanny.

They are selling the right to *use*, not access (1)

Geof (153857) | more than 6 years ago | (#20465779)

Oxford isn't selling his work. It's selling access to his work.

Examine the screenshot more carefully. They are not selling access to the article (the PDF is available for free). They are selling the right to use it. For $48, they say, you can republish it in a coursepack for use by 100 students. In other words, they appear to be sublicensing the work for a fee.

The scientist claims this is a violation of Oxford University Press's license to publish his work. He may be mistaken if he provided it to them under a different license. Even so, OUP's action is still wrong. This is like posting a sign on a public water fountain, demanding 25 cents from anyone who takes a drink - it may not be illegal, but it sure isn't honest. Unfortunately that's par for the course with copyright: publishers regularly copy public domain materials, then claim copyright themselves.

Stick with the chemistry, doc! Understanding the law isn't for you

Here we have a law that affects everyone in their everyday lives. That law is so complex that thoughtful people who care about it, like this university professor and cocky Slashotters (like you, and I'm not exempt either) get confused about routine matters. We have an unjust law that's virtually impossible to respect.

Simple solution (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#20465237)

1. Place links in multiple places throughout paper to free access site.
2. Make sure Google indexes this free site.
3. Don't profit!

Hold the Sensationalism (0, Flamebait)

ParticleMan911 (688473) | more than 6 years ago | (#20465251)

"demanded $48 from him to access his own scientific paper" Tell the story, leave out the sensationalism. The site didn't demand anything, and don't act like the author expected to automatically download it because he wrote it. If they are selling it without permission, just say so and don't add this nonsense. /. editors should not have posted this rendition of the story.

Re:Hold the Sensationalism (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#20465341)

Ahh yes, because, as we all know, Slashdot Editors are renowned for their restraint in publishing non-sensationalist topics/articles...

You Must Be New Here ;)

-AC

WIthout permission? (1)

posterlogo (943853) | more than 6 years ago | (#20465259)

I've published a couple papers/seen a few through the publication process. Almost all journals either publish free after 1 year/6 months, allow you to post your work (in a slightly altered pre-publication "draft" format) in Pubmed central, or can grant you free access to your own paper on demand.


That he didn't know all this going into it is highly questionable. Most scientists know perfectly well that a condition of publication in most journals is that you grant the journal exclusive copyright on the published form of the paper, but not on the intellectual content within.

I don't agree to pay for research through my taxes (-1, Flamebait)

dada21 (163177) | more than 6 years ago | (#20465297)

I know some "scientists" who have government grants for "research" that I likely pay a part of through my taxes. One of my best friends from High School is a PhD in an earth science, and he's always jumping from grant to grant to grant, and his research is mostly useless from a market perspective.

How about instead of "freeing up" research based on money that is stolen, we just stop the steal-and-pay mentality of government research grants, and let the market economy support what it needs and deny what it doesn't need?

If some poor researcher loses funding, and industry realizes they had something good to say or study, they'll get the money quick enough, plus they can decide who to offer it to and at what price. It is no different than the guy who washes cars: if government paid him to do it, he'd be charging $100 an hour and would forget to use water.

Re:I don't agree to pay for research through my ta (1)

Ramble (940291) | more than 6 years ago | (#20465371)

Without state funded research into relativity (something that appears uselss to the market) we wouldn't have accurate GPS and other accurate measuring systems. Science cannot be judged by the market becuase the market cannot predict what is useful in the realm of the unknown.

Re:I don't agree to pay for research through my ta (1)

dada21 (163177) | more than 6 years ago | (#20465415)

Without state funded research into relativity (something that appears uselss to the market) we wouldn't have accurate GPS and other accurate measuring systems. Science cannot be judged by the market because the market cannot predict what is useful in the realm of the unknown.

And you know this how?

Ground-based GPS has been around as long as triangulation has, it just wasn't a product that consumers wanted when it was available. It wasn't BECAUSE of government research that we have GPS, it was because the market demanded it as the discoveries were made.

I find it ridiculous that people think that just because government-research paid for SOME discoveries that those same discoveries wouldn't exist in a market economy. Not only would they exist, but we'd have even more research produced as people are challenged to be the first to market with a product.

Re:I don't agree to pay for research through my ta (1)

smallfries (601545) | more than 6 years ago | (#20465485)

It wasn't BECAUSE of government research that we have GPS, it was because the market demanded it as the discoveries were made.

You couldn't be more wrong unless you are somehow counting research performed by the US military as some kind of market force...

Re:I don't agree to pay for research through my ta (1)

Ramble (940291) | more than 6 years ago | (#20465559)

Ground based GPS falls down as soon as you go out of range of the station, satellites don't have this problem. Also, GPS was originally a US military only thing, something that you paid for out of your tax dollars. I don't doubt that some discoveries would have been made if only the market contolled science (not as many most likely) but I don't feel comfortable with one super corporation holding all scientific patents. Obviously you have no understanding of how research works.

Re:I don't agree to pay for research through my ta (1)

MikeBabcock (65886) | more than 6 years ago | (#20465623)

That's only true for the most part of "last-mile" science. 99% of space research so far has been publicly funded and probably would not have happened in the time frame in question had it not been. However, since most of the work is already done, it is now commercially viable to do research on end-user marketable product like space travel and space hotels.

Most companies don't have the budget to do the kinds of research that is funded by government, and if they did, they'd mostly spend it on immediate results. Look at the fall of PARC for a good example of how you're wrong.

Re:I don't agree to pay for research through my ta (1)

asadodetira (664509) | more than 6 years ago | (#20465629)

You make the common mistake of confusing science and technology. I don't blame you, many people do.

Ground-based triangulation (1)

benhocking (724439) | more than 6 years ago | (#20465657)

Historically, ground-based triangulation used local positioning systems and not global positioning systems. Studies have shown that countries that fund basic research out-perform countries that do not in both education and economics. If you want to argue based off ideologies, that's fine, but do realize that you're tilting at windmills and not being pragmatic.

Re:I don't agree to pay for research through my ta (1)

thegnu (557446) | more than 6 years ago | (#20465427)

If some poor researcher loses funding, and industry realizes they had something good to say or study, they'll get the money quick enough, plus they can decide who to offer it to and at what price.
The only issue is that there ARE legitimate research projects that nobody will pay for because they don't have a definite payoff. Or a high probability of working. Now, I agree that the govt grant thing is a little ridiculous as I know someone who essentially studied to be a grant writer, but it's even more extreme than the current implementation to cut all funding.

Does someone have a list of govt funded research we currently take for granted?

Re:I don't agree to pay for research through my ta (1)

SlappyBastard (961143) | more than 6 years ago | (#20465431)

QUOTE: How about instead of "freeing up" research based on money that is stolen, we just stop the steal-and-pay mentality of government research grants, and let the market economy support what it needs and deny what it doesn't need?

I find this funny considering you're posting this comment on the INTERNET of all places.

Research requires patronage. And that patronage will fund a lot of broken and useless crap.

Also, the efficient markets theory isn't true. Companies fund tons of useless, unmarketable crap, too. Look at half the semiconductor and pharm industries.

A lot of research is useless. But you don't always know until you get in there and see what things really do. And people do abuse the system. It doesn't matter what system you use. Every system is prone to abuse because there will always being people looking to abuse the system. All the market does is give capitalist interests an excuse to claim their abuses are profitable and therefore no one should bitch because the consumer gets to foot the bill.

Think about market-driven research itself before thinking it is so great. Some monkey actually sat down and built the actuarial tables and policies that today are screwing up the healthcare system and making sure that even people who have insurance somehow don't get procedures covered. Yep. Market-driven research really did a lot of good there.

Re:I don't agree to pay for research through my ta (1)

dada21 (163177) | more than 6 years ago | (#20465509)

I find this funny considering you're posting this comment on the INTERNET of all places.

I started my first telecom business as a BBS when I was 11 years old. The Internet may have been a government-started entity, but it was the market that provided what we have today. Heck, I had an X.25 network in my house in my teen years before I could get a decent Internet connection -- and X.25 worked wonderfully for interconnection before the market started providing T1s and ISDL to those willing to foot the bill. The government-designed Internet was not an efficient process, and it would have happened naturally soon enough through X.25 or other communication, too. Remember FidoNet? I remember when the nightly dial-ups started to disappear as more large BBSes had X.25 packet networks to connect real-time through. FidoNet was a market-provided network, and it worked fine for a long time.

Research requires patronage. And that patronage will fund a lot of broken and useless crap.

Nothing is useless, all products have markets, however large or small. Yet some "useless crap" today can be a useful treasure tomorrow, based on what each individual needs and is willing to pay for.

Also, the efficient markets theory isn't true. Companies fund tons of useless, unmarketable crap, too. Look at half the semiconductor and pharm industries.

Stepping stones to finding products and services that they can offer. All my research also helps me find a market for my solutions.

A lot of research is useless. But you don't always know until you get in there and see what things really do. And people do abuse the system. It doesn't matter what system you use. Every system is prone to abuse because there will always being people looking to abuse the system. All the market does is give capitalist interests an excuse to claim their abuses are profitable and therefore no one should bitch because the consumer gets to foot the bill.

The consumer who foots the bill is the same individual who AGREED to foot the bill. Today, taxpayers foot the bill -- taxpayers who do NOT agree to foot each particular expenditure. Consumers spending = voluntary, government taxes = theft. How hard is that to understand?

Think about market-driven research itself before thinking it is so great. Some monkey actually sat down and built the actuarial tables and policies that today are screwing up the healthcare system and making sure that even people who have insurance somehow don't get procedures covered. Yep. Market-driven research really did a lot of good there.

Sorry, my friend, but it was not the market that created the health care problem. The biggest destroyer of cheap and excellent health care in the United States was, guess who? Government, starting with the HMO Act of 1973 [lewrockwell.com] .

My apologies (1)

SlappyBastard (961143) | more than 6 years ago | (#20465711)

You're just a right-wing nut. I should have known better.

Who was President in 1973? What party was he from?

BTW, the market did cause the healthcare crisis. There is an economic phenomenon called "cost disease" that occurs when a skill that can only turn out so much efficiency (such as surgery) fails to keep up with the broader market (which, at large, is in fact efficient and therefore surpasses its inefficient sections). It is no mistake that medicine became a problem around the time that efficiency took off.

Re:My apologies (1)

dada21 (163177) | more than 6 years ago | (#20465833)

You're just a right-wing nut. I should have known better.

No, I don't like the right-wing. Right and Left are both wings of the same side of the coin: authoritarians. I'm on the other side of the coin, anti-authoritarian.

Who was President in 1973? What party was he from?

Doesn't matter, both parties conspire to reduce freedom, increase taxation, and use both to support their friends and cronies.

BTW, the market did cause the healthcare crisis. There is an economic phenomenon called "cost disease" that occurs when a skill that can only turn out so much efficiency (such as surgery) fails to keep up with the broader market (which, at large, is in fact efficient and therefore surpasses its inefficient sections). It is no mistake that medicine became a problem around the time that efficiency took off.

If you look carefully at the health care system, you see the obvious causes for the crises: reduced supply of doctors, and a high cost to pay for services.

BOTH of these problems are caused by Congressional force.

1. Congress, the AMA, and the ADA artificially place a cap on new doctors licensed. This reduces the supply of doctors, which increases cost. Low supply + high demand = high price. In a market economy, people could become doctors, putting added competition in the market.

2. The high cost of services comes from two factors: a. the government's money flow into the industry (acquired through theft), and the laws legislating criminal response to what a market economy would provide for. For example, rather than having doctors hold liability insurance, the market economy would let each individual acquire their own liability insurance for each medical treatment based on what they need and what they can afford. This is currently ILLEGAL to get. This way, you would pay for the insurance you need, per treatment, based on the doctor's history with your insurer. Tort lawyers would hate this. This is called negative outcome insurance [lewrockwell.com] , and you are a criminal if you try to acquire it.

libertarian nutjobs (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#20465861)

always talk like this, theres no place for gubment, all they need is their weapons and a compound to defend. why people continue to engage these simpletons expecting reasonable debate is one of life's many mysteries.

Re:I don't agree to pay for research through my ta (3, Insightful)

Alioth (221270) | more than 6 years ago | (#20465461)

With that kind of attitude, we would still all be living in caves.

Research into quantum physics would have seemed useless with no market value when it was started. However, 50 years later, without that research, there would have been no transistors. How big is the semiconductor market today? 50 years before it even existed, no capitalist could have forseen the use of the research. There is a very good case for researching things that may have no market value for decades.

Re:I don't agree to pay for research through my ta (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#20465471)

I really want to see you say that when you get hit by an 'incurable' disease. Hmm... who's trying to develop cures for those corner cases?

Re:I don't agree to pay for research through my ta (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#20465611)

I really want to see you say that when you get hit by an 'incurable' disease. Hmm... who's trying to develop cures for those corner cases?

The money spent today trying to find a cure, through government grants, is money stolen that could be used by millions to make their lives better TODAY. A small fraction of people will eventually be "saved" by a government cure, but millions of lives will be harmed in small increments to try to make that discovery.

No thanks.

Re:I don't agree to pay for research through my ta (1)

blahplusplus (757119) | more than 6 years ago | (#20465493)

"How about instead of "freeing up" research based on money that is stolen, we just stop the steal-and-pay mentality of government research grants, and let the market economy support what it needs and deny what it doesn't need?"

Because the market knows the price of everything, but the VALUE of nothing. The market is not some panacea. NASA and other space agencies would never have existed becauase the "market perspective" would never get involved in projects who's risk is high and whose return on investment scopes are beyond small minded petty capitalist human lifetimes.

Re:I don't agree to pay for research through my ta (1)

Proteus (1926) | more than 6 years ago | (#20465547)

If some poor researcher loses funding, and industry realizes they had something good to say or study, they'll get the money quick enough, plus they can decide who to offer it to and at what price. It is no different than the guy who washes cars: if government paid him to do it, he'd be charging $100 an hour and would forget to use water.
It's true that the government grant system is poorly-managed, and that we pay a lot more than we should in many circumstances. However, research isn't only valuable as a "marketable materials" pursuit.

If we didn't have government grants, no pure research would ever be done, and the only stuff we'd be discovering would have direct marketable value. That sounds great until you realize that much of the "valuable" research that's been done depended on earlier research that didn't have any obvious value.

For example, if Michael Faraday hadn't figured out the principles of electro-magnetic radiation -- something he did just because he was curious, and which had no obvious practical value in 1831 -- we would not have had a generators, radios, and a myriad other things (like transformers) that make modern life possible.

Re:I don't agree to pay for research through my ta (2, Insightful)

asadodetira (664509) | more than 6 years ago | (#20465563)

"his research is mostly useless from a market perspective".

That's why research is peer-reviewed y scientists and not marketers. If the market was to decide what's worthy of researching, only narrow areas of immediate commercial interest will be funded. Basic research such as math that's useful to do other research is not immediately useful market-wise, but necessary for overall progress of human knowledge.

Re:I don't agree to pay for research through my ta (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#20465571)

Because if we let the market drive fundamental research our society will end up exactly as depicted in Mike Judge's movie "Idiocracy". All of the greatest minds of science will focus on drugs to treat erectile dysfunction and nothing else.

There already is a very strong profit motivation in private pharmaceutical research leaving research into treating diseases that don't affect the G7 nations as much as third world nations more or less ignored.

But that said, it's probably just fine with some people if all research was directed towards improving the lives of only those who can pay. Fair is fair, right? You were lucky enough to be born into a family who can afford to pay, so screw everyone else. That's the American way! Yee-Haw!

Not "Free Market" Nonsense Again (3, Insightful)

asphaltjesus (978804) | more than 6 years ago | (#20465641)

let the market economy support what it needs and deny what it doesn't need?

That's already the case in the pharmaceuticals industry. Supposedly independent academic research has long ago been purchased by drug manufacturers in exchange for the Dean showing a great bottom line.

Has the cost of medicine in general gone down?

Is there more access to the medical system?

What about drugs that cure diseases in countries that can't afford to pay? Do they get the same amount of research as erectile disfunction and mood disorder research?

Please abandon this kind of thinking. A market-like system creates as many problems as the one it replaces. Only it's more virulent, harms consumers a multitude of ways and benefits a very, very select few. As Microsoft and AT&T have proven, even regulation doesn't shut down a monopoly.

Re:Not "Free Market" Nonsense Again (1)

sholden (12227) | more than 6 years ago | (#20465869)

What about drugs that cure diseases in countries that can't afford to pay? Do they get the same amount of research as erectile disfunction and mood disorder research?

That's pretty much irrelevant. Do they get the less research than they would under some alternative system is what matters?

You could just ban all medical research tomorrow, and bingo those diseases now get the same amount of research as erectile disfunction and mood disorders. That's a good thing, right?

shortshighted greed in action (1)

Scrameustache (459504) | more than 6 years ago | (#20465715)

let the market economy support what it needs and deny what it doesn't need?
Because there is no money to be made into curing diseases, only in providing lifelong treatments.

Re:I don't agree to pay for research through my ta (1)

ljw1004 (764174) | more than 6 years ago | (#20465777)

It's because in the "free market" of nation-states, the successful ones were those that invested in science. The ones which didn't invest were left behind. It's straightforward free market economics and survival of the fittest (nation).

Re:I don't agree to pay for research through my ta (1)

king-manic (409855) | more than 6 years ago | (#20465813)

I know some "scientists" who have government grants for "research" that I likely pay a part of through my taxes. One of my best friends from High School is a PhD in an earth science, and he's always jumping from grant to grant to grant, and his research is mostly useless from a market perspective.

How about instead of "freeing up" research based on money that is stolen, we just stop the steal-and-pay mentality of government research grants, and let the market economy support what it needs and deny what it doesn't need?

If some poor researcher loses funding, and industry realizes they had something good to say or study, they'll get the money quick enough, plus they can decide who to offer it to and at what price. It is no different than the guy who washes cars: if government paid him to do it, he'd be charging $100 an hour and would forget to use water.


There is so much research that is not financially interesting in the near term that such "market driven" funding would result in the wholesale collapse of basic research. Your basically asking that all non-near term profitable research stop because industry does almost nothing and funds only things they expect to be profitable in the near term (10 years). Things such as the entire field of astronomy, most of biology, the majority of physics, the majority of almost all science is not profitable in the near term.

Contrary to what you think most scientists and grants do not pay $100/h to do menial tasks. They pay a Post grad student peanuts to do skilled work or a PHD to supervise work for just about what a guy with 8 years of schooling should be paid. I think your idea of government bloat is a bit skewed with the realities of academia.

Made With The Cheapest Communist Labor (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#20465325)

Impeach Bush With a Chinese DDOS FP!

Losers.

Next time, send them a copy. (1)

seebs (15766) | more than 6 years ago | (#20465361)

Always keep a copy of your work before sending one off to the publisher. :)

What surprises me .... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#20465363)

is that they charge him in dollars, while the currency in England is pounds?

I guess the almighty dollar is just ubiquitous. Or is it that they like paying less and less for their access over there?

google works with them as well (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#20465375)

Search any more-interesting scientific subject on google and you'll get tens and tens of PDF links with excerpts. When you enter them they ask you money. How come they rank #1..#100 in google and with the nice PDF link? These days it's almost impossible to find anything related to a scientific concept on google that does not take you to a pay-link. Thank you google.

Not Surprising (1)

phobos13013 (813040) | more than 6 years ago | (#20465405)

Well, academia of all places is expected to create this kind of controversy. Access to research paper is one of the most restricted information sources there is! Mostly because there really isnt a market share for people wanting to read about Health Effects Engineering [sciencedirect.com] or some other random technical issue. Meanwhile, the whole world is interested in illegally sharing the new Transformers movie, regardless of its quality.

Also, the fact that it was released under the CC license, does this limit his legal ability to sue? Is there case law to support the CC license as a legally-binding rule internationally?

You always have the option of submitting your paper to the PLoS [plos.org] if it follows the applicable guidelines.

Ever heard of (1)

Bootle (816136) | more than 6 years ago | (#20465469)

http://www.arxiv.org/ [arxiv.org] ?

Story Overblown (2, Informative)

nodrogluap (165820) | more than 6 years ago | (#20465475)

You can access the article from the OUP web site for free (CC-NL with attribution), and additionally it is available from PubMed Central at the NIH. I don't know how we got that popup asking him for money to use it in a classroom, but it is probably just a mistake. Of course, there's nothing stopping someone from asking you to pay for something that's free, if you're a sucker. Once again, the whole article is right there to read, with the CC license right at the top. BTW, OUP has both Open Access and non-open access journals, so I can see how a common document delivery system could get screwed up. Not that it should, but you could see how. Hopefully they will correct it, I've published Open Access and non-Open Access papers with OUP and they are pretty responsive on both the technical and editorial sides.

Nothing except... copyright law? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#20465601)

Of course, there's nothing stopping someone from asking you to pay for something that's free, if you're a sucker.

In this case, the "something that's free" was released under a Creative Commons license with the "No Commercial Use" clause. OUP asking you to pay for it constitutes commercial use of the work on OUP's part, and is a violation of the license. Therefore, OUP making and distributing copies of the work is criminal copyright infringement.

IANAL but if he sues them he should be able to win easily in court.

Publish in PLOS (2, Informative)

GAATTC (870216) | more than 6 years ago | (#20465479)

One way to completely avoid the issue of commercial scientific publishers is to publish in an open access journal such as one of the Public Library of Science http://www.plos.org/ [plos.org] journals.

The open access model works as follows: "Open Access: Everything we publish is freely available online for you to read, download, copy, distribute, and use (with attribution) any way you wish." Pretty straight forward.

As an author you pay a small amount to support the publication of the journal - often smaller than the cost for color pages at a commercial journal, and then your work is freely available. These are high quality journals and are one important part of the free future of scientific publishing. The more people who make this choice, the more pressure there will be on the traditional journals to open up their content if they want to survive.

Full Text, only $48 dollars or 5 mod points (4, Interesting)

Creepy Crawler (680178) | more than 6 years ago | (#20465483)


OUP wants me to pay for my own Open Access article

I have been dismayed (previous post: "Open Access") at the lack of commitment to OA by mainstream (primarily toll-access (TA)) publishers and have described this as a "systemic failure" of the industry. Here is another unacceptable lack of clarity and commitment from an Open Access journal from a major publisher. I had been investigating OUP's site for another reason (PRISM: Open Letter to Oxford University Press) and since I had published with them thought I would have a look at papers I had written ("I" and "my" include co-authors). This is what I found (screenshot):

The Image in the blog entry stating $48 cost [imageshack.us]

The electronic article is accompanied by a sidebar with "request permissions". I followed this and the result is shown above. The journal wishes to charge me 48 USD to:

        * USE MY OWN ARTICLE
        * ON WHICH I HOLD COPYRIGHT
        * FOR NON-COMMERCIAL PURPOSES (TEACHING)

The journal is therefore

        * SELLING MY INTELLECTUAL PROPERTY
        * WITHOUT MY PERMISSION
        * AGAINST THE TERMS OF THE LICENCE (NO COMMERCIAL USE)

I am lost for words... ... the only charitable conclusion I can draw is that the publisher ritually attaches the awful Rightslink page to every article automatically and that this is a genuine mistake. I have found such "genuine mistakes" with other publishers in their hybrid journals (i.e. where only some of the papers are OA, the majority being toll-access TA). But this is a fully OA journal - all papers are OA - I assume CC-NC. There is no excuse for including the Rightslink page on ANY OA paper, let alone every one on a journal.

If this is - as I desperately hope - a genuine mistake then my criticism might seem harsh. But it is actually part of the systemic failure of the industry to promote Open Access. And I hope that OUP can and will clarify and rectify the position. If, however, it is deliberate and that the publisher actually intends to charge readers and users for Open Access articles I shall reserve comment.

This is not a trivial point. The normal reader of a journal who wishes to re-use material has to navigate copyright constraints and restrictions on an all-too-frequent basis. Such a reader, especially if they were relatively unaware of Open Access could easily pay the journal for "permission to use an Open Access article for teaching". (Note that other charges are higher - to include my own article in a book I write would cost nearly 350 USD).

It is all indicative of an industry that simply isn't trying hard enough.
RECOMMENDATION:

OPEN ACCESS ARTICLES ON PUBLISHERS' WEB PAGES SHOULD NEVER BE ACCOMPANIED BY RIGHTSLINK OR OTHER PERMISSION MATERIAL. INSTEAD THE PUBLISHER SHOULD PRO-ACTIVELY POINT OUT THE NATURE OF OA AND ENSURE THAT THE READER AND RE-USER IS FULLY AWARE OF THEIR RIGHTS.

After all, the author has paid for this...

This entry was posted on Monday, September 3rd, 2007 at 6:43 pm and is filed under open issues. You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0 feed. You can leave a response, or trackback from your own site.

Re:Full Text, only $48 dollars or 5 mod points (1)

Creepy Crawler (680178) | more than 6 years ago | (#20465829)

Ok...

Here's the Oxford website in question: Here [oxfordjournals.org]

Try clicking on full text. You get full text without rightslink garbage.

If you look through the source for copyright.com (as seen in image), it's related to a javascript and is onclick a certain element that is NOT in the site.

After reading this, it seems an honest mistake.

Scholar.google does have 3 other sources for this document.

Ingenta DOES require payment [ingentaconnect.com] in the line of $36.97 to view this. Hmm.

The Document Is Free, What Is He On About? (3, Informative)

_bug_ (112702) | more than 6 years ago | (#20465499)

The page on OUP's website that the Rust is on about is located here [oxfordjournals.org] . As you can plainly see on the right-hand of the screen this document is available, FOR FREE, in PDF format. In fact, here's a direct link to said PDF on OUP's website [oxfordjournals.org] .

What Rust's complaint is about is the "Request Permissions" link under the "Services" menu on the left-side of the page. It apparently opens to a third party website [copyright.com] which OUP, it appears, uses to calculate charges for different uses of papers published through OUP.

My guess here is a bit of poor programming for the OUP website. The document is clearly CC and it's free to download, but the copyright.com website doesn't appear to know this, so it's providing pricing on publishing the article. Maybe OUP needs to look into this matter, but the fact remains that the paper is online, freely accessible through OUP to anyone, and clearly listed as being released under CC licensing.

Rust is really making a lot of fuss over nothing.

Re:The Document Is Free, What Is He On About? (1)

maubp (303462) | more than 6 years ago | (#20465635)

I agree that this a big fuss over nothing - the slashdot title doesn't help either.

If you read the footer of the "quick quote" page (cropped in the article screen shot), it even tells you that the quote is for commerial use, and that because this is an open access CC article it doesn't need to be licenced for non-commerial use.

The third party www.copyright.com site could be a lot more up front about this of course!

who owns research (1)

b17bmbr (608864) | more than 6 years ago | (#20465523)

If I work at a university and do research there, they pay the costs, etc., then does my research belong to me? It's my understanding that PhD dissertations belong to the university. And, does the same hold true at companies as well? If they are footing the bill, then do you really "own" it?

I am certainly not a lawyer, but it seems to me at least that if you do independent research, then it belongs to you. I guess the same holds true for code as well. How many profs had to sign NDA's or other copyright arrangements. Certainly, some research requires enormous capital investment and can't be conducted independently.

Nominative determinism strikes again (1)

Colin Smith (2679) | more than 6 years ago | (#20465533)

Be careful what you name your children.

Though in this case it's the family name.
 

Price quoted is for commerial use only! (2, Insightful)

maubp (303462) | more than 6 years ago | (#20465539)

Citation:
Holliday et al. (2007) MACiE (Mechanism, Annotation and Classification in Enzymes): novel tools for searching catalytic mechanisms. Nucleic Acids Research, 35, Database issue D515-D520. DOI link [doi.org]

He's right that clicking on the right and getting a quick quote for reproducing the entire article as part of a course pack (print and/or electric) is non zero... BUT, producing a course pack doesn't allways equate to non-commerial in my mind.

It might part of university course, in which case Peter Murray-Rust seems justified in taking calling this non-commerial (and therefore free under the CC licence used).

However, the course-pack could be part of a commercial training course for members of the pharma industry - in which case the end user would have to pay the copyright holders.

The bottom of the quick quote page even EXPLAINS this (cropped in his screen shot):

If the item you are seeking permission to re-use is labeled OPEN ACCESS ARTICLE then please note that non-commercial reuse of it is according to the terms and conditions of the Creative Commons license. Permission only needs to be obtained for commercial use and can be done via Rightslink. If you have any queries about re-use of content published as part of the Oxford Open program, please contact journals.permissions@oxfordjournals.org.

What's the big fuss about?

Re:Price quoted is for commerial use only! (2, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#20465765)

The fuss is that the author never licensed the website to distribute commercially under *any* terms, let alone for a fee. Only the copyright holder can authorize that, and unless the author has signed the copyright over to the website, negotions for commercial use need to occur with *him*.

Taxes? (1, Troll)

PhreakOfTime (588141) | more than 6 years ago | (#20465597)

isn't it time to say enough is enough, and demand free access to the research we pay for through our taxes?

Wrong. Most of you're taxes pay for the interest on the national debt. Everything beyond that is 'paid for' through deficit financing. Mostly by selling US bonds to china as a result of the trade imbalance.

while I support the argument of open access to information, your methodologies leave much to be desired. Paying taxes doesnt give you a 'right' to anything. Anymore than paying a gas tax gives you a 'right' to go as fast as you want on public roads.

He is paying not for his paper but for.. (1)

JackMeyhoff (1070484) | more than 6 years ago | (#20465665)

.. the SERVICE :)

Cambridge produces the establishment (3, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#20465677)

Look, Prof. Rust, I hate to break this to you, but you are representing one of the two universities which pretty much singlehandedly produce the lawyers, politicians and civil servants of this country. All productive work that you do goes ultimately toward bolstering the establishment. And the establishment likes the kind of crap exploitative behaviour displayed by publishers.

If you don't like it - and I wish more scientists and mathematicians didn't - you would distance yourself from Oxbridge, and do what religious dissenters had to do prior to C20: set up their own Universities. Sound daft? Early C19 France's post-revolutionary applied bent brought work from Laplace, Legendre, Galois, Cauchy, et al. publishing in Liouville's Journal de Mathematiques - where the founder was also a prominent author; Germany supplied us with Gauss, Dirichlet, Jacobi, et al. publishing in Crelle's Journal, a lovechild of Crelle and Abel's relationship with the new abstract mathematics; where was Cambridge? Well, Woodhouse's attempts to advance on tutoring of Newton's fluxions by introducing Lagrange's algebra was a miserable failure, the most advanced mathematical textbook was a translation of Lacroix that preceded Cauchy's work at the Ecole in the 1820s, Frend was back to poking fun at the concept of negative numbers (400 years too late, buddy!) for the lack of physical association - and that was before he was thrown out for being OMG a unitarian. Despite De Morgan's "science of symbols" trying to drag Cambridge kicking and screaming to C19 Continental levels of progress (and, hell, the of abstract symbolism was well ranted about by Leibniz 100 years prior), he similarly received the boot for being an OMG heretic!

The sad thing is that in the first half of C19, England was the backward exception; today, the spirit of revolutionising society by broadening participation in scientific advancement is absent from pretty much the whole of Europe. But I repeat myself. If the best academics, following Laplace, would poke their "spirit of the infinitesimal" into the power-lustful eyes of the contemporary Napoleons, sacrificing a little research time to strengthen the power of the productive as opposed to the administrative, we'd see some progress. (N.B. yes, US readers, I know, putting control in the hands of the workers is socialism and in the hands of the owners of the presses is capitalism blah blah. Whatever. The cold war's over, enough of the witch trials already.)

And no, putting your faith in a profit-making entity like Google is not the answer, for the businessman giveth and the businessman taketh away; though I expect Google will court academics looking for a less oppressive way to manage the peer review and publishing process.

When in Rome...DMCA takedown time (1)

Xanthvar (1046980) | more than 6 years ago | (#20465727)

He should do what IP abusers do in a case like this... send a DMCA take down notice to the ISP, for the site.

I am guessing that the Oxford University Press's website is pretty large, and that the ISP may the university, so he may need to go up stream with the takedown request. They only have a matter of hours to take action once they have received the notice ( a certified letter drawn up by a lawyer, not an email from the author).

IANAL, but it would probably be a good way to get someone's attention, and can be referred to in a court of law, if he chooses to take action. Further more, one might be able to extrapolate, that he could DEMAND the server and financial logs, and then take legal action against all of those people.

This would be great, if he took this to court, and LOST, as it would set a precedent, which could then be used against the RIAA.

If only the world worked that way.

Here's to dreaming :)

Re:When in Rome...DMCA takedown time (1)

DrSkwid (118965) | more than 6 years ago | (#20465827)

> DMCA take down notice to the ISP, for the site.

I know there's the "special relationship" but the US and the UK are different countries with different laws. We don't have a DMCA here.

It's not copyright abuse... (1)

DimGeo (694000) | more than 6 years ago | (#20465757)

... Remember kids, it's theft! Send the dang pirates to jail!

so the real issue is (2, Insightful)

darth_linux (778182) | more than 6 years ago | (#20465767)

does private ownership of intellectual property hinder scientific research? Should publicly funded science be required to release findings using creative commons (or other such) license? Does it bother us that a large chunk of DNA research IP is help by private parties?

Diagnosis: Valium deficiency (2, Informative)

DynaSoar (714234) | more than 6 years ago | (#20465847)

Nucleic Acids Research is an open journal, which charges the authors a publication fee. It's supposed to be free for reading by their own statement. Thus, this is not some special case of open access submission to a regular journal. The charges window is from OA's regular, pay-for-access journals. It's obviously a simple mistake by OA's web site. Write email to AO's admin for access at openaccess@oxfordjournals.org and let them know, then give them adequate time to fix it. Journals, even open access, even web-based, are not fast action organizations and OA is, in my experience, one of the slower ones.

As for a claim of "my" article from one of a dozen or so authors (the complaint being about 6th or 8th among them) as well as the complaint about not being able to read it (you've got a copy, don't you?) instead of the more accurate "charge being applied to OUR open access article on THEIR open access journal web site", criminy, take a trank and some deep breaths. You're having a tantrum and it's making you spout extravagant and incorrect claims. It took me all of 5 minutes, including reading the blog posts, to find the contact point for OA's open access admin. Contact the right people and let them fix it.

FWIW, NIH has been working to get any publication supported by NIH funding to be made available for free (at least to US sites, as having been supported by US tax money) via National Library of Medicine's PubMed (nee MEDLINE), no matter what journal it's in. NASA has had good luck making their stuff available through their own channels since they won't sign over copyright to journals because they're publicly supported, and NIH is following their example through their own distribution system. And that's working with copyright snatching pay-for journals. Open access journals are already open, and I haven't had this problem with non-OA open pubs, so it's obvious this is simply a bug in the OA system. It happens. They're not evil ogres out to steal "your" pub.

It might go faster if the first author made the contact with OA, but I doubt it since I doubt they intended for this to happen.
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