[open-science] SPARC author addendum uses CC-NC licence and now all hybrid publishers have followed

Thomas Kluyver takowl at gmail.com
Mon Dec 12 16:50:44 UTC 2011

On 12 December 2011 15:27, Heather Morrison <heatherm at eln.bc.ca> wrote:

> Commercial use for the 99%
> Commercial use for socially responsible companies and individual
> entrepreneurs
> Commercial use EXCEPT companies that lobby for more restrictive copyright
> laws
> Free use for students and teachers (this should not be called commercial
> use, because education should not be commercial - the fact that we are
> heading in this direction does not make it a good direction)
> Free and unrestricted use, with respect. If you wish to use data about an
> endangered species to protect the species, go for it. On the other hand, if
> you wish to use the data to harm the species, we should be able to sue. Not
> just the author, either - anyone.

I respect the sentiment behind these ideas, but I don't think it's
reasonable to try to encode them in a legal document. How do you define a
'socially responsible' company, for example? You'll just end up with
loopholes that can be easily exploited by the very organisations you're
trying to keep out.

The last one also sounds dangerously close to "you can only use my data if
I like what you're doing". A key part of open access in science has to be
the right to tear data apart to find faults, whether the author likes it or
not. And let's not try to implement conservation legislation through the
medium of copyright - both are complex enough issues without entangling the

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