[OAI-general] Re: The archival status of archived papers
Tue, 3 Dec 2002 01:33:32 +0000
I'm considering adding version control to the files. This is going to be
needed for the oft discussed j-prints (eprints with peer review)
I think for archives like ECS letting the author un-deposit then resubmit is
probably OK, but bad for cogprints. I'm considering adding it as an *option*
which the archive admin can enable/disable.
This is definitely a quality vs. quantity issue. ECS EPrints is already such
a state I don't think it can hurt. Cogprints is another matter.
Suggestions of a perfect(better) solution are more than welcome.
On Mon, Dec 02, 2002 at 07:40:34 +0000, Stevan Harnad wrote:
> On Mon, 2 Dec 2002, J Adrian Pickering wrote:
> > It isn't just a technical issue.
> > If you follow Mark's solution you end up with the risk of people citing
> > papers that don't contain the information they cite anymore.
> Mark suggested that an archived article should be a persisting object,
> with a persisting identifier. That seems reasonable. Now if there have
> been several successive versions of a paper (which the author wants to
> consider as successive versions rather than new papers), then it also
> seems reasonable that the archive should link all the successive
> versions and point to the latest one by default.
> All the prior versions are preserved, and accessible (unless the archive
> has a policy allowing withdrawal -- a policy that should not be
> It is the user's or citer's responsibility to specify which version they
> have used/cited, if there are more than one. That will become part of
> good scholarship, just as spelling the author's name correctly is.
> So we need both unique identifier for a generic paper and a unique
> identifier for a specific draft of that paper.
> > This is particularly likely when the matter being discussed is
> > controversial. A citation strictly refers to a manifestation/version
> > not the generic paper.
> Correct. It refers to a specific draft, usually with a calendar date and
> some other identifying features.
> > If the person making the citation wishes to change the citation to a later
> > version then that is *their* right. The link is *their* link, not the
> > target's. If you have 'published' something then it is in the public domain
> > and you must expect people to cite it (and that version).
> I mostly agree. But this seems to be covered by providing unique version
> identifies; it does not prevent the Archive from defaulting to the most
> recent version -- while offering the earlier versions too.
> It might be making a subtle difference in the view people are taking on
> this whether they are thinking of the Archive as a centralized one
> (rather like a journal) or a distributed institutional one (rather like
> author-provided reprints). It is conceivable that different drafts of a
> paper will be in different archives. Those distributed versions too,
> need to be trackable and integrated. My technical inexpertise leaves me
> unable to propose how to do this, but it is the hardest-case scenario,
> and the one we should aim to cover, eventually. Assuming it will all
> be in one central archive is probably unrealistic (and unnecessary, in the
> spirit of distributed OAI archiving and interoperability).
> To my layman's ear it sounds as if every version of a paper will need a
> unique version identifier, and in addition, there will need to be some
> interoperable ways of integrating different versions as being different
> versions of the same paper. The new scholarship will be, at the gross
> level, concerned only with citing the generic paper (without worrying
> about version fine-tuning), but the careful scholars need to have the
> option of specifying the version too, uniquely, for those cases where
> it matters.
> > I agree that archive items should persist and, therefore, the references to
> > them. The relationship between the versions should be issue to click
> > through too.
> > Regards the 'user' query, they need to be told not to submit so many
> > versions i.e. *think* carefully before submission! This is a matter of
> > policy and governs the degree of 'resistance' there is to making
> > submissions. There needs to be some otherwise the quality level drop.
> It cuts both ways. Yes, authors should not start archiving willy-nilly
> every raw draft and every afterthought. But they should not feel
> constrained in doing corrections and updates whenever they are needed
> too. Authors should know, though, that from the moment they place a draft
> into a public open-access archive, it may be read, cited, and pointed to
> -- that specific draft -- in perpetuum. That is part of what it means
> to have archived something publicly.
> I'm sure scholars will easily get a sense for this, as they have for
> everything else. In the beginning some will fumble and treat the
> archive as labile first drafts or lapidary touch-me-nots, but experience
> and feedback will calibrate everyone's practice and reflexes. The
> Archives just have to make sure they do not pre-judge or short-circuit
> any important options a priori.
> > A/
> > >Stevan Harnad
> > >
> > >On Mon, 2 Dec 2002, Mark Doyle wrote:
> > >
> > > > Greetings,
> > > >
> > > > On Tuesday, November 26, 2002, at 08:27 PM, Stevan Harnad wrote:
> > > >
> > > > > Now it is conceivable that the eprints architecture can be slightly
> > > > > modified, so that the old, suppressed URL for the deleted paper
> > > > > automatically redirects to the new draft if someone tries to access
> > > > > the old one. That I have to let Chris reply about. Here I have merely
> > > > > explained the rationale for not having designed the archive so a paper
> > > > > could be deposited, and then modified willy-nilly under the same URL.
> > > > > For that would not have been an archive at all, and user complaints,
> > > > > about trying to use and cite a moving target, would have far
> > > > > out-numbered
> > > > > depositor complaints about what to do with after-thoughts and
> > > > > successive
> > > > > drafts.
> > > >
> > > > Well, that is one way to look at it. On the other hand, arXiv.org uses
> > > > version numbers and the persistent name/id and URL (say hep-th/0210311
> > > > and http://arXiv.org/abs/hep-th/0210311) always points to the latest
> > > > version
> > > > with links to the earlier versions.
> > > >
> > > > I believe you are advocating a poor design choice here. One cannot
> > > > overemphasize
> > > > the importance of human-friendly persistent names that are easily
> > > > converted
> > > > to URL's for linking and quick location. Patching the system to
> > > > redirect to the
> > > > latest linked version is a hack. Is one actually able to download
> > > > the earlier version (which is what was cited)? Generally, a better
> > > > approach
> > > > is to give a good persistent name to a "work" and not a single
> > > > manifestation
> > > > of that work (whether it be a particular format or a particular
> > > > version) and
> > > > then give a reader a single point of entry into the system that can be
> > > > bookmarked
> > > > or cited reliably which gives a choice of what to download. Cutting off
> > > > access
> > > > to an earlier, citeable version is a mistake. Archives should not
> > > > delete items
> > > > or make them hard to access - rather they should show items in context
> > > > and give easy access to an item's history and versioning with a single
> > > > identifier for the work taken as a whole.
> > > >
> > > > Cheers,
> > > > Mark
> > > >
> > > > Mark Doyle
> > > > Manager, Product Development
> > > > The American Physical Society
> > > >
Christopher Gutteridge -- firstname.lastname@example.org -- +44 (0)23 8059 4833
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