Decision reached: SuSanA is making its publications open access

  • muench
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Decision reached: SuSanA is making its publications open access

I have a question to you all: When is SuSanA going to move to open access for its publications?

So far, they are under a different kind of licence (at the time when this was set up, people were not yet familiar with the "open access" concept).

On all SuSanA publications and in the Imprint of the SuSanA website it says (for example in the SuSanA vision document):

© Sustainable Sanitation Alliance
All SuSanA materials are freely available following the open-source concept for capacity development and non-profit use, so long as proper acknowledgement of the source is made when used. Users should always give credit in citations to the original author, source and copyright holder.


In my opinion now, this is no longer good enough and a bit old-fashioned now.
May I humbly suggest that we re-think this?

Maybe we could change it to:

All SuSanA materials are available under the open access licence CC-BY.


What do you think?

Regards,
Elisabeth

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  • WikiDocJames
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Re: When is SuSanA going to move to open access for its publications?

Yes either CC BY or CC BY SA. I like the later one as it requires those who reuse your materials to also keep what they produce open access. CC BY however is what much of the publishing world uses.

The Gates Foundation is happy with either of these two.

James Heilman
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  • Marijn Zandee
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Re: When is SuSanA going to move to open access for its publications?

Dear Elizabeth,

To be honest, I think the former description is much more clear to most people. If you change to one of the new acronyms, I think you need to put at least a small note explaining what it is. Otherwise most people would probably ignore it.

Regards

Marijn

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  • muench
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Re: When is SuSanA going to move to open access for its publications?

Hi Marijn,

Good point, although I think the general reader never really reads the fine print about copyright anyway. And those looking for a copyright statement (because they want to move the stuff to Wikipedia) know exactly what the accronyms mean. :-)

What we could do is to put a hyperlink behind the CC-BY which could e.g. go to this page (like in the example of Energypedia which I commented on here ):

www.creativecommons.org/licenses/by-sa/3.0/

Which means:

You are free to:
Share — copy and redistribute the material in any medium or format
Adapt — remix, transform, and build upon the material for any purpose, even commercially.


So this is the big difference to what we had before, I have highlighted below what indicates that our current copyright statement is not open access:

© Sustainable Sanitation Alliance
All SuSanA materials are freely available following the open-source concept for capacity development and non-profit use, so long as proper acknowledgement of the source is made when used. Users should always give credit in citations to the original author, source and copyright holder.


I also think the second sentence is superfluous as it's just a repeat of the first sentence.

Let me take an example: If we decided that all SuSanA publications should be open access (I think for the vision document this is a no brainer), then also the working group factsheets would in future encouraged to be open access. Of course the final decision would be up to the authors.

Take this factsheet that Working Group 11 (groundwater) recently published under the SuSanA banner:
forum.susana.org/forum/categories/64-wg-...f-sanitation-systems

If it was open access then we could now go ahead and see which of its content could be used to enrich the Wikipedia page on groundwater and copy it directly across (without the need to paraphrase, which is the alternative option):
en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Groundwater

I have in the background already spoken to Andrea and Leif about it. Andrea said that her employer, BGR, might not allow the photos to be open access. I have asked Leif if the schematics could be made open access (as they are his schematics) but he hasn't responded yet.

I wonder if it's possible that the document is under an open access licence but the photos inside of the documents are not (to alleviate the fears of BGR). Or perhaps BGR could make an exception for certain photos. Actually in this particular factsheet there are only 3 photos and none of them I would necessarily want for the Wikipedia article, but I am just using this as an example.

An exmaple of the kind of schematic that is in this factsheet and that could be useful for the Wikipedia article is this one:



My proposal would therefore be:
  • The licence arrangement of the SuSanA vision document is changed to CC-BY (=open access).
  • The authors of the working group factsheets are contacted and asked if they would agree to changing the licence agreement for their factsheet to CC-BY. Even if only some of the working group factsheets are opened up, this would already be a step in the right direction.
If ADB (Asian Development Bank) can make all their publications open access (also retrospectively!) - see my post here - then why can't SuSanA?

Regards,
Elisabeth

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  • joeturner
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Re: When is SuSanA going to move to open access for its publications?

FWIW, I think there is a problem with trying to change copyright licences in retrospect.

If this was to change, I'd have thought the simplest thing is to keep the existing files (albeit whilst noting this is imperfect) and to change the parameters for any future publications.

Also (I think) that if one issues a pdf under CC-BY, users can extract images for reuse - which might not be the best quality available. It might be better to add those images individually to a library where they can be found and used.
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  • muench
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Re: When is SuSanA going to move to open access for its publications?

I do think it can be done retrospectively - isn't it was ADB has just announced here for their publications?:
forum.susana.org/forum/categories/166-de...-cc-by-licence#12203

MANILA, PHILIPPINES – The Asian Development Bank (ADB) has made all its economic and development research on Asia and the Pacific available under open access, a principle that promotes unrestricted online access to scholarly research so that it can be more widely distributed and used.

[...]
The open access website was launched today with more than 2,000 publications from ADB’s current publications and archive. It will eventually include the complete back catalog of ADB research—well over 5,000 publications — dating back to 1966, the year ADB was established.


And yes, the images would not be cut and past from the pdf file but ideally they would be put into our flickr photo database ( www.flickr.com/photos/gtzecosan/collections/ ), from there into Wikimedia Commons (they are already in there): en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Wikimedia_Commons or
commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/Category:File...on_Alliance_(SuSanA)

Inserting a photo into a Wikipedia article is fast and easy when the photo is already in Wikimedia Commons (all 10,000+ of our photos were transferred to Wikimedia Commons end of last year which is great; and more will be added in batches about every half a year).

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  • joeturner
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Re: When is SuSanA going to move to open access for its publications?

OK, well it can be done, but one would need the permission of those who wrote the original document and/or holders of the copyright.

I'm guessing the Gates Foundation can do it because they regain full copyright.
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  • muench
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Re: When is SuSanA going to move to open access for its publications?

Well, in any case it wouldn't be so hard to ask the authors because we only have 13 SuSanA factsheets ( www.susana.org/en/resources/library/details/1229 ) and one vision document ( www.susana.org/en/resources/library/details/267 ).

Oh yes, and 86 case studies ( www.susana.org/en/resources/case-studies ). But why would any of the authors of the case studies not agree to making it open access? Don't we want this information to be shared and re-adapted as widely as possible?

Technically, the copyright holder of these factsheets and case studies seems to be SuSanA in any case (see the little disclaimer that I mentioned above). So this should mean that the copyright holder can agree to changing the licence retrospectively, like you said and like ADB has done.

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  • Marijn Zandee
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Re: When is SuSanA going to move to open access for its publications?

Dear Elisabeth,

I am fully on board with open access.I agree that in the old version the second sentence was technically redundant. However, I could also see how people think it is a good idea to gently remind people of acknowledgements.

I would suggest something like:

"All SuSanA materials are available under open access license (CC-BY).
Feel free to use any of the information, but acknowledge this document as the source."

The CC-BY bit, could me made to be the hyperlink. As long as the link is static and will not break if a version 4.0 comes out.

Regards

Marijn

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  • JKMakowka
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Re: When is SuSanA going to move to open access for its publications?

As for pictures under a separate non open access license: it is possible to state something like "all content, unless otherwise explicitly noticed, is available under the CC-by" and have a separate copyright notice in the caption of the photos.
But obviously having them available as open access too would be much preferable.

Krischan Makowka
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  • WikiDocJames
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Re: When is SuSanA going to move to open access for its publications?

We at Wikipedia years ago changed the license we use from GDFL to CC BY SA. We had a very large vote and with greater than 66% the license for all the text was changed. I am happy to put Elisabeth in touch with a lawyer at the "Creative Commons" if your group is wanting further guidance.

J

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  • F H Mughal
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Re: When is SuSanA going to move to open access for its publications?

ADB's version is as follows:

ADB encourages printing or copying information exclusively for personal and noncommercial use with proper acknowledgment of ADB. Users are restricted from reselling, redistributing, or creating derivative works for commercial purposes without the express, written consent of ADB.

F H Mughal

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