Re: "Copyleft" article in New Scientist

From: Fytton Rowland <J.F.Rowland_at_LBORO.AC.UK>
Date: Thu, 31 Jan 2002 15:59:45 +0000

At 03:47 PM 1/31/02 +0000, Stevan harnad wrote:
>It looks to me as if "copyleft" is just a cute label for toll-free access
>in the special case of text (software, music, etc. are all different
>from text). The only thing I'm not sure about is whether "copyleft"
>ensures all the usage rights researchers might want with refereed
>research papers.

While those on this list favour making scholarly articles available free of
charge on the WWW, we do not, I imagine, favour allowing others to take our
free-of-charge material and incorporate it into their for-fee products.
This would be piracy and possibly also plagiarism.

There therefore needs to be a way of indicating that our free material is
not available for republication without the author's permission.
Personally I'd have thought that marking it copyright achieves this -- the
right to make a copy of my work free of charge to read it yourself is fine,
the right to then try to sell copies of it without any reference to me is
not fine. However, that is in the European system where copyright doesn't
have to be registered, and an original text is copyright automatically as
soon as you've written it. I can see that in the US system it might not be
so. If you want to call it copyleft I'm happy [I prefer the left to the
right anytime (8-) ].

Fytton Rowland, M.A., Ph.D., F.I.Inf.Sc., Lecturer,
Deputy Director of Undergraduate Programmes and
Programme Tutor for Publishing with English,
Department of Information Science,
Loughborough University,
Loughborough, Leics LE11 3TU, UK.

Phone +44 (0) 1509 223039 Fax +44 (0) 1509 223053
Received on Thu Jan 31 2002 - 16:21:55 GMT

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