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ARL Opposes STM Model Licenses, Recommends Creative Commons as Alternative

image © Journal of Cell Biology

ARL, along with almost 60 other organizations, joined in a letter opposing model licenses recently released by the International Association of Scientific, Technical & Medical Publishers (STM). The letter’s signatories are calling for STM to recommend to its member publishers that they work within the Creative Commons framework instead of offering their own customized open access licenses, which increase confusion and decrease interoperability with existing open licenses.

Creative Commons (CC) licenses are the de facto global standard for open content licensing and have been adopted by a broad-based community, including providers of open access publishing, government data and public sector information, educational resources, and creative content. These CC licenses have been developed and refined in a transparent manner by a diverse range of legal experts from around the world. Authors and users of research content should have straightforward, easy-to-understand legal tools to promote sharing and increase access to scholarly and scientific research. CC licenses also meet many funding requirements to enable unrestricted re-use of the licensed work as long as there is appropriate attribution.

The full letter can be found on the Public Library of Science (PLOS) website and other organizations are encouraged to sign the letter there.

The Association of Research Libraries (ARL) is a nonprofit organization of 125 research libraries in the US and Canada. ARL’s mission is to influence the changing environment of scholarly communication and the public policies that affect research libraries and the diverse communities they serve. ARL pursues this mission by advancing the goals of its member research libraries, providing leadership in public and information policy to the scholarly and higher education communities, fostering the exchange of ideas and expertise, facilitating the emergence of new roles for research libraries, and shaping a future environment that leverages its interests with those of allied organizations. ARL is on the web at http://www.arl.org/.