“The November 2023 Open Science Roundup is dedicated to the ‘Year of Open Science’ as we review significant developments in the Open Science movement. This month, we also feature insights from André Brasil, a researcher at the Centre for Science and Technology Studies (CWTS), on trailblazing initiatives for Open Access.”
“In this September edition of the ISC Open Science Roundup, Heather Joseph explores the pivotal role of Open Science in achieving this universal access to information, while Moumita Koley provides the latest news and opportunities to keep you updated with everything happening in the world of Open Science.”
“The Digital Library of Georgia has made its 3 millionth digitized and full-text-searchable historic newspaper page available freely online.
The title page of the first edition of the May 22, 1917, issue of the Atlanta Georgian reports on the destruction caused by the Great Atlanta Fire of 1917 and the city’s effort to control the damage.
This issue marks the 3 millionth page digitized by the Digital Library of Georgia.
The newspaper circulated daily from 1906 to 1939, was the first Hearst-owned newspaper in the South, and is the most prominent example of sensationalist yellow journalism in Georgia. In its first year of publication, the paper infamously printed stories intended to inflame racial tensions that contributed to the start of the Atlanta Race Massacre of 1906….”
“A desire of the Living with Machines project (and indeed an AHRC ‘gold standard’) is to release as many of the newspapers we digitised as we can (subject to copyright) in forms that other researchers can access and interrogate. The digitisation process undertaken jointly by the British Library and FindMyPast for Living with Machines has resulted in a series of newspaper images and related automatically transcribed (OCR) text, which have been released in various ways. …”
“Many of us probably share the following intuitions: to keep up with the ever-growing amount of literature, researchers have to specialize more and more; this reduces the potentially fruitful exchange between specialist bubbles. And: a growing number of political, economic, and societal decisions are made based on science. However, science gives guidance only; it does not make decisions for us. Given the participatory nature of democratic societies, we all need to understand what science generally – not only science from one’s own field of expertise – actually tells us about climate change, future energy systems, COVID-19, multiresistant bacteria, loss of biodiversity, etc.
But would researchers or stakeholders read the original papers in fields beyond their own expertise? Many wouldn’t – and they’d miss the information. The value of press releases, newspapers, and popular science magazines, on the other hand, is limited . These aim at being comprehensible to broader audiences and, to this end, refrain from presenting the full complexity and limitations of the actual findings.
The conceptual gap between these types of document is usually large. An article that falls within that gap, however, might offer an appropriate balance of simplicity and complexity for researchers with different specializations, policymakers, decision-makers, funders, early career scientists, journalists, educated generalists – in short, for those less likely to read the original research but who have an in-depth interest in the science presented.
I’d therefore like to suggest that this gap is a place in its own right that deserves additional coverage….”
“The online database Trove may go offline in the middle of the year without additional funding.
Trove, which is owned and operated by the National Library of Australia (NLA), is a free resource which provides access to billions of digital documents, images, media and records of physical documents. It also contains millions of digitised Australian newspaper pages and issues.
Trove receives around 22 million hits per year, and is widely used by both academic researchers and members of the public.
So what does it cost to run an archive like it?…
According to the Sydney Morning Herald, the NLA requires $7-$10 million per year to keep Trove running in its current form….”
“In many ways, the erasure of the alternative weekly, whose print and online journalism included matters such as nightlife listings as well as deep investigative work, isn’t unusual. Historians have long warned about the decay of digital news archives, which are increasingly falling victim to mishandling, indifference, bankruptcies and technical failures.
But some of the Hook’s founding journalists suspect the archive didn’t simply expire from natural causes. They think someone paid to kill it.
Their evidence, while circumstantial, is intriguing. There’s the mystery buyer who purchased the Hook archive from its longtime custodian a few months before it went dark. There’s the reluctance of people involved in that sale to say much about it….”
“Later today, the House of Commons will vote to approve Bill C-18, the Online News Act, sending it to the Senate just prior to breaking for the holidays. While Canadian Heritage Minister Pablo Rodriguez and media lobbyists will no doubt celebrate the milestone, it should not go unremarked that the legislative process for this bill has been an utter embarrassment with an already bad bill made far worse. The government cut off debate at second reading, actively excluded dozens of potential witnesses, expanded the bill to hundreds of broadcasters that may not even produce news, denigrated online news services as “not real news”, and shrugged off violations of international copyright law. All the while, it acknowledged that mandated payments for links are the foundation of the bill with officials stating that individual Facebook posts accompanied by a link to a news story would be caught by the law. As for the purported financial benefits, the government’s own estimates are less than half those of the Parliamentary Budget Officer, who also concluded that more than 75% of the revenues will go to broadcasters such as Bell, Rogers, and the CBC. The end result is a bill that will undermine competition and pose a threat to freedom of expression, while potentially leading Facebook to block news sharing in Canada and Google to cancel dozens of existing agreements with Canadian news outlets….”
“The EU Directive on Copyright in the Digital Single Market contains two spectacularly bad ideas. One is the upload filter of Article 17, which will wreak havoc not just on creativity in the EU, but also on freedom of speech there, as algorithms block perfectly legal material. The other concerns the “snippet tax” of Article 15, more formally known as ancillary copyright..
Just as the impetus for the upload filter came from the music and film industries, so the lobbying for Article 15 came from newspaper publishers. The logic behind their demand, such as it was, seemed to be that Google was making money from ads on its pages that had some links to newspaper sites. That ignored two inconvenient facts. First, that Google’s dedicated news site, Google News, had precisely zero ads on its pages. And secondly, the pages on the main Google search engine that did have ads, had many other search hits alongside links to newspapers. And those links to newspaper sites send a considerable flow of traffic, that publishers have repeatedly shown they are desperate to have….”
Abstract: The company Altmetric is often used to collect mentions of research in online news stories, yet there have been concerns about the quality of this data. This study investigates these concerns. Using a manual content analysis of 400 news stories as a comparison method, we analyzed the precision and recall with which Altmetric identified mentions of research in 8 news outlets. We also used logistic regression to identify the characteristics of research mentions that influence their likelihood of being successfully identified. We find that, for a predefined set of outlets, Altmetric’s news mention data were relatively accurate (F-score = 0.80), with very high precision (0.95) and acceptable recall (0.70), although recall is below 0.50 for some news outlets. Altmetric is more likely to successfully identify mentions of research that include a hyperlink to the research item, an author name, and/or the title of a publication venue. This data source appears to be less reliable for mentions of research that provide little or no bibliometric information, as well as for identifying mentions of scholarly monographs, conference presentations, dissertations, and non-English research articles. Our findings suggest that, with caveats, scholars can use Altmetric news mention data as a relatively reliable source to identify research mentions across a range of outlets with high precision and acceptable recall, offering scholars the potential to conserve resources during data collection. Our study does not, however, offer an assessment of completeness or accuracy of Altmetric news data overall.
“Last week, Authors Alliance submitted a comment to the U.S. Copyright Office, responding to its new study about establishing a new press publishers’ right in the United States which would require news aggregators to pay licensing fees as part of their aggregation of headlines, ledes, and short phrases of news articles. Our comment, made in the second round of comments on this study, also responded to an initial round of comments from other stakeholders. Authors Alliance opposes a new press publishers’ right because it is contrary to the interests of our members and small press publications and moreover is inconsistent with longstanding principles of copyright law. …”
“The Howard University Moorland-Spingarn Research Center (MSRC) received a $2 million grant from the Jonathan Logan Family Foundation to support the preservation and digitization of the Black Press Archives, a newspaper collection of titles by Black journalists, editors and publishers. MSRC worked in partnership with the Center for Journalism and Democracy to secure this critical gift, and the center will be committing additional funds to the project to ensure a significant number of publications in the Black Press Archives are available in an online repository for worldwide research….”
“After the publication shut down, owner Stephen Mindich wanted the public to be able to access back issues of the Phoenix. The complete run of the newspaper from 1973 to 2013 was donated to Northeastern University’s special collections. The family signed copyright over the university.
Librarians led a crowdsourcing project to create a digital index of all the articles and authors, which was helpful for historians and others in their research, said Giordana Mecagni, head of special collections and university archivist. Northeastern had inquired about digitizing the collection, but it was cost prohibitive.
As it turns out, the Internet Archive owned the master microfilm for the Phoenix and it put the full collection online in a separate collection: The Boston Phoenix 1973-2013. Initially, the back issues were only available for one patron to check out at a time through Controlled Digital Lending. Once Northeastern learned about the digitized collection, it extended rights to the Archive to allow the Phoenix to be downloaded without controls….”
“The thing about a lot of the news behind paywalls is that it doesn’t stay behind paywalls. It gets syndicated, sometimes to paywall-free sources. Most stories, even those paywalled, have a paragraph or so of content. To find these articles elsewhere, you could easily copy a phrase and then look for it in Google News. Or you could make a couple of bookmarklets and have a one-click, instant search for different case scenarios.
In this article we’re going for the latter option: two bookmarklets that will help you get to articles you can’t access otherwise. They won’t work 100% of the time, but I think you’ll be surprised at how short some of those paywalls are….”
“We’re putting together a webinar to talk about exactly this issue. How can scholars and publishers and librarians, so sort of this three-legged stool, how can we work together to find new models for creating and disseminating and preserving content that works for all of these communities? We’re going to have representatives from PLoS come and talk about their new business model exploring Community Action Publishing which is similar in some ways to the MIT Press Direct to Open Model. And then we’re also going to talk about the Global Press Archive which is a collaboration between CRL and Eastview which is similar to a Direct to Open publishing model but for newspaper content. So, those are some things that we’re doing later this month but that’s something that we want to build on in the future. ”