Department Blog

Health Sciences Libraries

FASTR: Fair Access to Science & Technology Research Act

February 19th, 2013 by Mary Wood

Legislation introduced to US Congress 14 February 2013

The Fair Access to Science and Technology Research Act was introduced in both houses of Congress on February 14 by a bipartisan team of sponsors.

From Scholarly Kitchen‘s Nick Anderson:

FASTR would require federal agencies that fund $100 million or more of extramural research each year to ensure that funded authors’ final peer-reviewed manuscripts are made publicly available within six months of publication. Furthermore, the articles are to be made available to the public “in formats and under terms that enable productive reuse, including computational analysis by state-of-the-art technologies.”


The Association of American Publishers (AAP), predictably enough, characterizes FASTR as a “different name” for the “same boondoggle” (as FRPAA), calling the proposal “unnecessary and a waste of federal resources.” Equally predictable is the response by the Association of College & Research Libraries, whose president expressed his pleasure at the bill’s introduction and emphasized the importance in particular of its provisions for “greater reuse through open licensing.”

The Library Journal InfoDocket (Gary Price) provides access to the ongoing discussion, including comment/analysis from Peter Jerram, PLOS and from Timothy Vollmer, Creative Commons

BioMed Central Requesting Public Consultation on Open Data

September 26th, 2012 by Deanna Johnson

BioMed Central is proposing to change the copyright license in their open access journals to make published data available for sharing, integration and reuse without legal restrictions, for the benefit of science. Implementation would mean that authors would apply a Creative Commons CC0 public domain waiver to data that is submitted for publication, and a Creative Commons attribution license to the remainder of their article. BioMed Central provides additional information on the BioMed Central blog and the full proposal is published in BMC Research Notes.

If you would like to comment to BioMed Central about their proposal send your feedback by 10th November 2012. You can also add a comment to the BioMed Central Blog.

UCSF Open Access Policy – Academic Senate vote unanimous

May 24th, 2012 by Mary Wood

UCSF News reports : UCSF Implements Policy to Make Research Papers Freely Accessible to Public

“…The UCSF Academic Senate has voted to make electronic versions of current and future scientific articles freely available to the public, helping to reverse decades of practice on the part of medical and scientific journal publishers to restrict access to research results…”

At their Division Meeting on May 21, the UCSF Academic Senate voted and approved the proposed Open Access Policy for UCSF.

“Our primary motivation is to make our research available to anyone who is interested in it, whether they are members of the general public or scientists without costly subscriptions to journals,” said Richard A. Schneider, PhD, chair of the UCSF Academic Senate Committee on Library and Scholarly Communication, who spearheaded the initiative at UCSF. “The decision is a huge step forward in eliminating barriers to scientific research,” he said. “By opening the currently closed system, this policy will fuel innovation and discovery, and give the taxpaying public free access to oversee their investments in research.”

The proposed UCSF policy and related documents

Open Access Movement Finds New Ally in UCSF
Michael Kelley, Library Journal, Digital Shift


Related is the system-wide UC Open Access Policy Proposal by the

University Committee on Library and Scholarly Communication:

UC Open Access Policy Proposal

Librarians, Open Access Advocates Oppose Research Works Act

January 11th, 2012 by Mary Wood

The newly proposed bill Research Works Act (H.R.3699) “has exacerbated tensions between open access advocates and the scholarly publishing industry over the dissemination of  publicly funded scientific and medical research.”  (M.Kelly, 1/9/12)

Incredulous and irate blog posts and editorials are appearing, in direct opposition to the Association of American Publishers (AAP), who are supportive of the bill.


Librarians, Open Access Advocates ‘Vehemently Oppose’ Research Works Act

The Digital Shift Library Journal Blog

Michael Kelly
January 9, 2012

Essentially, the bill seeks to prohibit federal agencies from conditioning their grants to require that articles reporting on publicly funded research be made accessible to the public online,” wrote Heather Joseph, the executive director of the Scholarly Publishing and Academic Resources Coalition (SPARC),

Kevin Smith, the scholarly communications officer at Duke University, took exception on his blog to the assertions made by the publishing industry:

I am stunned by the audacity of the claim that research articles are ‘produced’ by private sector publishers!  I think the producers of these works are sitting at desks and labs scattered around my campus, and thousands of other college and university campuses.  They are not paid by publishers either to do the research or to write their articles.


Stop Making Sense (Scholarly Publishing Edition)

ACRLog (ACRL Blog)
Association of College and Research Librarians

Maura Smale
January 6, 2012

Yesterday I was flabbergasted to read about the Research Works Act (hat tip to @CopyrightLibn and @RepoRat), legislation which is strongly supported by the Association of American Publishers. As described on the AAP website:

The Research Works Act will prohibit federal agencies from unauthorized free public dissemination of journal articles that report on research which, to some degree, has been federally-funded but is produced and published by private sector publishers receiving no such funding. It would also prevent non-government authors from being required to agree to such free distribution of these works. Additionally, it would preempt federal agencies’ planned funding, development and back-office administration of their own electronic repositories for such works, which would duplicate existing copyright-protected systems and unfairly compete with established university, society and commercial publishers.

I recommend reading the AAP’s statement in full — it’s truly head-spinning…


Research Bought, Then Paid For

New York Times, Op-Ed Contributor

January 10, 2012

The [NIH] policy has been quite unpopular with a powerful publishing cartels that are hellbent on denying US taxpayers access to and benefits from research they paid to produce…

This is the latest salvo in a continuing battle between the publishers of biomedical research journals like Cell, Science and The New England Journal of Medicine, which are seeking to protect a valuable franchise, and researchers, librarians and patient advocacy groups seeking to provide open access to publicly funded research. goes Creative Commons

November 10th, 2011 by Mary Wood

Creative Commons news from one of Bernadette‘s obscure listservs: goes Creative Commons: 50 great images that are now yours
Evan Hansen, November 7, 2011

Raw File: exposing the wired world, one photo at a time photographers have the enviable job of shooting the coolest stuff and most intriguing people in the technology world.   Now we’re giving away many of those photos to you, the public, for free.

Beginning today, we’re releasing all staff-produced photos under a Creative Commons CC Attribution-Noncommercial license (CC BY-NC) and making them available in high-res format on a newly launched public Flickr stream.

Photo: Jim Merithew/


The Creative Commons turns 10 years old next year, and the simple idea of releasing content with “some rights reserved” has revolutionized online sharing and fueled a thriving remix culture. Like many other sites across the web, we’ve benefited from CC-licensed photos at for years — thank you, sharers! It seems only fitting, and long overdue, to start sharing ourselves.

Placing our photos under CC BY-NC license means that designated images are free for all to republish, with minor restrictions.

To tell what’s fair game or not, look for the CC logo in the photo credit on stories before using an image, or pull pictures from our Flickr stream, which we’ll be updating continually.”

Flickr’s Creative Commons:
Many Flickr users have chosen to offer their work under a Creative Commons license, and you can browse or search through content under each type of license.

To explore the digital image databases available via the UC Davis Libraries, see the Digital Images Subject Guide created by Subject Specialist Daniel Goldstein

Check required permissions and/or citation methods for proprietary or copyrighted images.

Open Access Week 2010 Speaker Series at UC Davis

October 6th, 2010 by Deanna Johnson

Open Access Week ( (October 18-22) is an international event promoting open access: the idea that scholarly research should be freely and openly available to all. For Open Access Week 2010, the UC Davis Libraries are sponsoring a speaker series featuring renowned experts in open access issues. Please join us for these free lectures about the future of scholarly communication. See for further talk descriptions. Questions? Please contact Phoebe Ayers, or 530-752-9948.

OA week 2010 speakers

Catherine Mitchell and Patricia Cruse (California Digital Library)

“CDL Scholarly Publishing and Data Curation Services: Tools to Help You Manage Your Research at UC Davis”

  • Monday, October 18, 10am-12pm
  • Location: Shields Library, 2nd floor Library Instruction Room

Looking to expand the visibility of your work? Interested in reaching new communities with your research? Wondering how you are going to meet NSF’s new data management requirement? Come learn about exciting initiatives coming out of the California Digital Library that can help you achieve all these goals and more. See: and

Dr. Jonathan Eisen (PLoS Biology, UCD Genomics)

“What is ‘Open Access’ Publishing in Scientific Research?”

  • Thursday, October 21, 10am-11am
  • Location: Shields Library, 1st floor Library Instruction Lab

Dr. Jonathan Eisen is an evolutionary biologist and genomics researcher at UC Davis, focused on microorganisms. Dr. Eisen is also an active blogger ( and also the Academic Editor in Chief of PLoS Biology, one of the most pre-eminent open access journals. He will speak about PLoS and the importance of open access in scientific publication. See:

Marta Brunner (Open Humanities Press, UCLA Libraries)

“The Open Humanities Press and the Development of New Publishing Opportunities in the Humanities”

  • Thursday, October 21, 1pm-3pm
  • Location: 126 Voorhies

Marta Brunner shares her experience on the Steering Group at the Open Humanities Press (OHP), an international publishing collective in critical and cultural theory. Brunner, who is also a UCLA librarian, will discuss the opportunities and challenges Open Access models bring to humanities scholars in the context of the broader crisis in humanities publishing. See

John Wilbanks (Science Commons)

“The Unreasonable Impact of Open Access”

  • Friday, October 22, 11am-12pm
  • Location: Kemper Hall 1065

John Wilbanks is the head of the Science Commons project at Creative Commons, which aims to lower the barriers to research and sharing data and to develop tools to make open, web-based science easier. Wilbanks will talk about how free sharing of data and research helps improve scientific research, how open systems can improve quality measurement, and the impact of moving away from journal articles as the core form of knowledge transmission. See:

DOI’s for you and me…

June 22nd, 2010 by

 Some researchers may need the DOI for articles in their bibliographies.

going to: and finding the GuestQuery area is one way to get a DOI or you can go directly to GuestQuery by going to:

Once there you will need the name of the journal (important, necessary, useful) and then other information. General seaches with minimal information will not produce any group of results. The minimal information I used in one trial was the journal title, the first author’s last name, the volume number, and the first page number. Do NOT give up trying a search until you have put in a bit more information then Single Citation Matcher requires in PubMed.

On another hand — using the Single Citation Matcher requires in PubMed and then using the “Medline” display is another and perhaps easier way to find DOI’s.

By the way – from:
“The Digital Object Identifier (DOI®) System is for identifying content objects in the digital environment. DOI® names are assigned to any entity for use on digital networks. They are used to provide current information, including where they (or information about them) can be found on the Internet. Information about a digital object may change over time, including where to find it, but its DOI name will not change.”

There is a lot more information, background and tools at:

AND – if you have a DOI – find what it is at:

For additional help – contact a librarian at UC Davis:

Resources for music and video online: legal downloading and streaming alternatives

October 21st, 2009 by

In a recent post on the DMCA-info listserve, Jan Carmikle, the UC Davis Designated Agent for Digital Millennium Copyright Act notices, sent out a welcomed listing of both legal download sites and alternatives to legal downloading, namely streaming.
The compilation of resources provided by Educause is in response to the The Higher Education Opportunity Act which requires all colleges and universities to offer legal alternatives to unauthorized downloading.

The collection of resources is available on the Educause website:

Note: the site is continuously updated.

Legal downloading & streaming alternatives for music, games & video

Legal downloading & streaming alternatives for music, games & video

The Educause site includes a diverse assortment of legal alternatives to downloading, including streaming music, streaming video, online games, along with some legal P2P file sharing sites.
The streaming video sites include classic and contemporary award winning films such as those found at The Criterion Collection: online cinematheque, along with a lengthy listing of sites providing streaming access to popular TV and movie titles from commercial producers/vendors from Disney to Zune…
Many of these sites do have online stores for purchase of related products.

Looking for Educational Videos or Podcasts?

It takes a little wading around to find educational resources but they are there, though definitely buried. After keyword searching and scrolling through the channels, collections and ‘recently added’  lists, I came up with the following educational shows on Hulu:

Milestones in Science & Engineering:

The Nobel Prize (short clips):
Wired Science:

Hulu links out to some of the commercial sites, providing short clips as is the case with the TLC Discovery Health show (short clips): Big Medicine

Downloading Video and Audio Podcasts for Players or to view on your computer:

Higher Education Video and Audio Podcasts are available through iTunes (UC Davis on iTunesU) and Zune (higher education section) both requiring software downloads…but well worth it.

A favorite among the many streaming video sites is Hulu which offers an assortment of TV and video content through its channels and collections and some may be of interest to educators.
For example, in the Hulu Collections you’ll find President Obama’s speeches: and related TV and video collections.

Other Hulu services include the Publishing and design tools from their Hulu Labs:

Keep up on issues of copyright and the Digital Millennium Copyright Act in action:

Subscribe to one of the UC Davis listserves: Copyright-info and DMCA-info.
Find out more about the Digital Millennium Copyright Act (DMCA) at the UC Davis Innovation Access: connecting research to the market.

About the image:

The original family snapshot was cropped and edited using the built-in image editor on the free Flickr site. We used the pro features in the embedded Picnik editor (additional fonts, icons, images to overlay your photos). Subscription to the pro version provides access to the stand-alone Picnik editing site and allows the users to pull images from a variety of photo sites across the web at a cost of $24.00 for the annual subscription. Even the free Flickr accounts can be linked to the free Picnik editor via the ‘edit’ button; pro Picnik subscriptions can be linked through a login when in Flickr or Picnik. Both options allow for an arsenal of online quick editing features. To access the editor, log into your free or pro Flickr account, then click the edit button directly above any of the pictures you have uploaded.
View a larger version of the Picnik embellished image using the Halloween ghosts, copyright symbol, arrows, black and white view, item focus in blue and, my favorite, the editable lightening rod.

Posted by: Bernadette Daly Swanson