Support of articles that are in public domain

Describe the issue or problem
We have a journal with issues that date to the mid 19th century where do not provide a license because they are in the public domain. Currently it is difficult to override the default license for these articles with nothing. Additionally, we would like to be able to indicate that these are in the public domain.

Steps to reproduce the problem

  1. Set up a journal and pick a default license
  2. Create a few articles and issues
  3. Delete the default copyright and license information for some of the articles
  4. Publish

Expected behavior doesn’t meet needs
As designed, when there is no information in those fields then the defaults are used.

As a workaround I’ve been manually editing the database entries to get around the form behavior. However, if an editor goes back to update any metadata, add errata, etc., then the default license and copyright is added back to the publication.

It would be nice if there was a checkbox to indicate that the publication is in the public domain and there is no license. In the template there could then be a “this work is in the public domain” message where the license information typically goes.

Hi @IOPNdev,

I wonder if another possible workaround to this is to make use of CC’s public domain declaration in the license URL field: - that way you could label it as public domain?

PKP Team

Thanks for the recommendation, @rcgillis! I had looked at the cc-0 but hadn’t seen this. I definitely think that the pdm mark could be part of the solution, but the template will still render the license information like this:

But if the pdm was added to the list of recognized Creative Commons urls so the pdm graphic could be displayed and the “Copyright (c) year name” could be omitted that would be an ideal solution from our standpoint.

Hi @IOPNdev,

Yes - I agree. I think that PDM is more appropriate in cases where the work is already in the public domain and CC0 is more appropriate in instances where copyright is being waived. The more appropriate use of the PDM is elaborated further on the CC site:

I see what you mean, though - I tested this too and got the same result. However, I removed the copyright holder and copyright year (which I think defaults to the year in determined in the settings if you leave it blank:

And you just see a link to the license (which you can see is linking out to the PDM). But this is a misnomer, because the PDM is not actually a license like the other CC-licenses (although there is a similar legal deed, similar to the CC licenses)

This was tested using 3.3.0-13, by the way (not sure what version you’re operating from).

The use of alternate licenses is something that is being discussed: Add Traditional Knowledge Labels in OJS · Issue #6690 · pkp/pkp-lib · GitHub (granted, this is a bit of a different/specific context though).

I’ll let some of our other developers and community members weigh in here, but I think you’re on to something!

PKP Team

Thanks, @rcgillis, that would be great!

I’m also working with 3.3.0-13 with the default theme, and I was seeing a similar result to yours when I removed the copyright holder/year and then hit preview. But when you publish the default information is added back in for any field that is left blank, and so the view template uses the “Copyright (c) year holder” formula again.