Opening access to works in the public domain                          at Yale UniversityJohn ffrench – Director of Visual ...
Opening access to works in the public domain at Yale University                                               http://odai....
Opening access to works in the public domain at Yale University       Restrictions:       Copyright: Yale University fully...
Opening access to works in the public domain at Yale University
Opening access to works in the public domain at Yale University
Opening access to works in the public domain at Yale University
Opening access to works in the public domain at Yale University
Opening access to works in the public domain at Yale University
Opening access to works in the public domain at Yale University
Opening access to works in the public domain at Yale University
Opening access to works in the public domain at Yale University        Deed of Gift:
Opening access to works in the public domain at Yale University
Opening access to works in the public domain at Yale University
Opening access to works in the public domain at Yale University
Opening access to works in the public domain at Yale University
Opening access to works in the public domain at Yale University
Opening access to works in the public domain at Yale University
Opening access to works in the public domain at Yale University                           What are the boons and challenges?
Opening access to works in the public domain at Yale University                                              John.ffrench@...
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MCN 2012 Yale Open Access - John ffrench

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  • My name is John ffrench and I am the Director of Visual Resources at the Yale University Art Gallery. I oversee the imaging department which photographs the collection and also events, exhibitions, etc as well as overseeing the Rights and Reproductions office who deal with the dissemination of images for external requests.
  • As Melissa Fournier stated in her presentation on the climate that lead up to Open Access at Yale, the Art Gallery has been participating on Open Access since 2011. In reality the Gallery began making images available for free back in 2008 when our curators asked that we not charge for image use, or photography, when requests came in from scholars. For a brief period we continued to charge for commercial requests but soon stopped collecting fees for all requests as it was often hard to judge what was commercial vs. scholarly – and often we were asked by curators to waive those fees anyway. In December 2010 the Mellon Foundation held a meeting with several art museum directors and their rights management point people in NYC to discuss the idea of making images available for free for scholarly purposes. It was an interesting meeting to attend as most of the directors were behind the idea of ‘Open Access’ but felt if they went to their board with the idea it would be a hard sell (mostly due to the idea of losing some stream of revenue). A couple notable museum directors were clear that this was not something they would do as they make too much money from images to ever want to stop - I won’t name names, but you can imagine who it might be. The Directors felt that if one of the group were to step up and lead the charge they could more easily join in. Leaving the meeting the Gallery and YCBA felt this was a move they were ready to make and therefor felt ready to move ahead. It is worth noting that in general, campus museums have a greater capacity than their non-academic peers to be more experimental and innovative, in part because they are protected by academic freedom and use metrics of success that go beyond attendance, or income generation.
  • As noted, the Yale Open Access policy it focused on work in the public domain, and works under copyright, or that are on loan to the museum do not fall under this policy. This being said, the Gallery does make images of its copyrighted works available free of charge to requestors, however we do not do this in an automated fashion, instead each request is handled by staff and the requestor is made aware the object rights restrictions may be in place and it is their responsibility to clear permissions.
  • Once Open Access was announced in 2011, it quickly became apparent that a campus committee would be needed to address various issues related to Open Access. Perhaps surprisingly one of the things we needed to initially tackle was what was the definition of Public Domain. With the various collections on campus there were varying copyright laws that needed to be considered and no firm hard line could be easily drawn (at least not without going too far back in time). At the Gallery, and in general at Yale, the determination was that a creation date of 1923 or earlier would be a safe enough rule to put in place, this of course has some grey area as some artist died less than 70 years ago but created works prior to 1923. In those cases we look at the artists and the works to make determinations on how comfortable we feel. Due to costs involved in researching whether copyright was indeed applied for in these early works at times we find it easier to agree to pay Rights usage fees rather than try to assert a public domain claim. Something on campus we are still working through is what defines Publication when it comes to copyright, and other issues are still being addressed by the committee.
  • A second project the Open Access committee worked on was to establish a central site where each institution could point people to for FAQs. Rather than each unit maintaining this on their own site, and risking that language vary we created a central site that can be reviewed and updated with some regularity.
  • Internally we use TMS (The Museum System) for managing our collection records – as does the YCBA. We needed to decide how to mark records in TMS to reflect their copyright status and allow this information to be centrally accessed but also allow for some programatic code to be written against for our online websites. Using the Rights and Reproductions “module” of TMS we record data under the Object Rights Type menu. For objects we felt were under the public domain, using the 1923 creation date as a figure to write code to, our IT department was able to scoop up all records which were in the public domain.
  • For works which are not public domain, we set the ORT to be ‘Not Assigned’ so we have a field to search against for records needing research. As you can see in this slide, we have several ORT categories to select from which all map to a series of image access I will cover shortly.
  • For works which are under copyright and we know the rights holder we mark the ORT as “Under Copyright” and indicate the date we recorded that information. We also link the Rights holder as a Rights Holder Constituent so that others at the Gallery looking to clear rights for projects have the contact information in a central location. So as to avoid people needing to look at the R&R module each time they are curious to know if rights information is recorded, we also utilize Status Flags in TMS with a flag of “Check Copyright Restrictions”.
  • Where possible we are working to secure Non-Exclusive rights agreements with artist for works in our collection. This is done either via our Deed of Gift, or if we are already contacting an artist we will inquire if we can get a NER agreement. In these cases, such as this Kerry James Marshall work, the artist has given us permission to use the work for Gallery purposes, In this case we mark the ORT but we also link a PDF of the physical document that was signed by the artist (under ORT file name). Much as you can click to see a larger image in TMS, you can select the ORT document in the Media tab and click to open and read the document. This centralizing of rights related documents took some level of buy in at the Gallery as it seemingly created another layer of work of scanning, naming and linking a document to TMS, but in reality having this document centralized in this way saves more time long-term but people not having to hunt down who has the document, or knowing if one even exists.
  • As I stated earlier, when Open Access first came on we swept through our TMS system and marked all the record per-1923 as Public domain, or left them as Not Assigned. Now as we collect new objects, or as existing records are edited in TMS we receive a daily e-mail which tells us what new records, or records with date changes occurred the previous day. Looking at date range the system will automatically flip the switch to ‘Public Domain’ if it meets a set of criteria, or will leave it as ‘Not Assigned’. We can quickly look at these e-mails and determine if a mistake was made, or if there are other records we can touch which programmatically may not have made a determination (eg. If a date range says “around eighteen hundred”, the system cannot easily understand that in an automated fashion however the human eye can easily see that and then go into TMS and flip a switch).
  • As I noted, we have also worked to try and secure rights, or object status information at the time of acquisition. Working with our Registrar’s office we had several fields added to the Deed of Gift form which address Intellectual Property rights. These forms when returned to the registrar are scanned and sent to the Rights department who can then review the information and make ORT decisions in TMS (we at times have to get in touch with the donor if they indicate they hold to the rights to something and are giving us blanket permissions but they are not the artist – people mistakenly assume because they own the object, they own the rights which is npt the case). Often it is easy to make these determinations, but overall the Deed of Gift process helps us find contacts and connections which is a great use.
  • In order to enable some level of automation for the delivery of images, a central group on campus was formed out of the Digital Asset Management Committee (At Yale the Arts Organizations work from a centralized DAM system by Open Text, Media Manager). The Object Rights Type settings we established in TMS map through our DAM to what we call the Content Delivery Service. The CDS looks at the ORT information stored in the DAM and creates derivatives that end users can access. Each number on the left maps to a ORT (we worked to come up with common image access models).
  • Online, the YCBA and YUAG made the initial decision to follow the ARTstor model of image access by offering a screen sized JPG image and then a ¼, 1/2 , or full page Tiff file suitable for scholarly publication. This system also allows us to display only a thumbnail for works under copyright so that interested parties can see works in our collection but we are not providing a large file. At Yale it was decided we would follow the AAMD standards for thumbnails which states a thumbnail as being “up to 250x300 pixels”. Now this unfortunately raised an issue with our legal counsel as the this would preclude that a square object could not be 300 pixels as one end would exceed the 250 number, secondly that language states ‘Up to” but not including so legal counsel and the committee after some discussion determined a thumb would be 249 pixels on the longest dimension. WHY AAMD wrote the language this way we don’t know but trying to get the committee to readdress it may be difficult so for now this is what we work with.
  • In our Media Manager (aka DAM) we can record the CDS number which reads automatically from our CMS, or we can do a manual override of the system as well if we don’t want a particular file to go out for some reason – eg a conservation image. We can also record rights related information to be displayed on our website such as rights holder, photo credit, or rights holder URLs.
  • For the Gallery, and similarly for YCBA, this information is passed on through CDS and our website works from the CDS system. In this case of a copyrighted work, only a thumb is displayed and we also see the rights holder credit information with a hyperlink to the foundation and also to our R&R department. The image itself is not downloadable.
  • For a work such as this teapot which is in the public domain, we display a thumbnail as well but note that the work is in the public domain (the link points to the central page defining Public Domain) and then we offer a download of the file. The Gallery decided rather than offer several different sizes of JPGs or Tiffs that we would offer the largest CDS Tiff which allows for a full page schoalrly print. The thought was that most people would have interest in this and the file was not so large as to choke peoples systems. YCBA did some web metrics and found most of their users were downloading the 20MB tiff and are considering not offering other file sizes for programatic ease. If we have multiple views of an object those files are also available by clicking through the views and then selecting download for the view a user desires. We do not offer any permissions forms with these images however. If users have this need they would need to contact our Rights department for a standard permissions letter. Also if a user has the need for a larger file than online provides they would need to contact the R&R offices.
  • A new tool we are about to launch will allow us to review and edit/alter many of the fields I have discussed today. In one interface a user can look at all new DAM ingests and mark the files with anything from IPTC data, CDS access, rank, primary, etc. This tool will also allow you to retrieve information from a TMS object package and make DAM related settings there as well (if a file is in TMS but not the DAM the screen greys out). For YUAG we only house our studio quality images in the DAM today, but on our website we display studio as well as i.d images (those taken by curators or registrars which may not be visually pleasing but give the viewer a sense of the obejct)
  • While Open Access is a great thing to provide, and the feedback we’ve gotten from clients is great there are of course challenges to implementing this policy. First you can see from this presentation that there is a lot of initial leg-work that needs to take place to enable the process. Over time this will slow down as our collection is culled through however. With Open Access we’ve seen a rise in requests for images from our collection. From when open access was announced to now we’ve seen just over a 40% increase in number of requests. Happily for our intents of the policy, the majority (about 80%) of the the request are stated to be for a scholarly nature – with online immediate access this information will not be track able as we do not require users to create accounts or fill out user information to gain access to files. The fear many may have of the shower curtains being made from our files has not been a reality (that we know of) but the thought also is where is the harm in that. If people wake up each day and one of the first things they see is a work from our collection isnt’t that a good thing? Yes, we did give up some revenue stream by going to Open Access but the add-benefits we receive in our view outweigh the income we lost (and it is worth noting that most museums operate in a cost-recovery situation anyway vs. a cost profit model – one could read some of Simon Tanner’s reports to learn more on this). We do still maintain some 3 rd party relationships with companies such as Art Resources, Scala, ARTstor, etc and while many of the files they provide are in the public domain we did not feel it was logical to call all those files back as often people working with companies like that are looking more for a specific type of image (subject) than a specific work from OUR collection. The broader visibility we receive from companies like this is more important to us. Yes, we do still receive a percentage of sale from works in the public domain, and this is something we are grappling with how to handle moving forward. While it may be easy to say, “”Sure, your Yale and this is easy for you to do, but we are small and poor” I would say that this Oepn Access model is actually scalable to any institution. Works in the Public Domain should be made readily available. When only 5-10% of our collections are hanging on our walls at any given time (if we are lucky) online access and also free access should be something we all strive for.
  • I thank you for your time and interest. If you have any questions about the policy or procedures we employ at the Gallery please feel free to get in touch with me. Additionally all of the software code we create to enable these processes is information we freely share. AT this time we do not have a website set up where one can freely grab that information, but we are happy to share, or discuss or backend processes. Thank you.
  • MCN 2012 Yale Open Access - John ffrench

    1. 1. Opening access to works in the public domain at Yale UniversityJohn ffrench – Director of Visual Resources Museum Computer Network, Seattle WashingtonYale University Art Gallery Saturday November 11th, 2012 - 10:30am - 12:00pm
    2. 2. Opening access to works in the public domain at Yale University http://odai.yale.edu/open-access-collections
    3. 3. Opening access to works in the public domain at Yale University Restrictions: Copyright: Yale University fully supports the protection of intellectual property and is committed to complying with and strictly adhering to all applicable copyright law. Privacy: Yale University respects the right to privacy of individuals and groups and is committed to complying with and strictly adhering to all applicable legal requirements in protecting that privacy. Donor Restriction: Yale University is committed to strictly adhering to provisions embodied in agreements with donors of collections.
    4. 4. Opening access to works in the public domain at Yale University
    5. 5. Opening access to works in the public domain at Yale University
    6. 6. Opening access to works in the public domain at Yale University
    7. 7. Opening access to works in the public domain at Yale University
    8. 8. Opening access to works in the public domain at Yale University
    9. 9. Opening access to works in the public domain at Yale University
    10. 10. Opening access to works in the public domain at Yale University
    11. 11. Opening access to works in the public domain at Yale University Deed of Gift:
    12. 12. Opening access to works in the public domain at Yale University
    13. 13. Opening access to works in the public domain at Yale University
    14. 14. Opening access to works in the public domain at Yale University
    15. 15. Opening access to works in the public domain at Yale University
    16. 16. Opening access to works in the public domain at Yale University
    17. 17. Opening access to works in the public domain at Yale University
    18. 18. Opening access to works in the public domain at Yale University What are the boons and challenges?
    19. 19. Opening access to works in the public domain at Yale University John.ffrench@yale.eduJohn ffrench – Director of Visual Resources Museum Computer Network, Seattle WashingtonYale University Art Gallery Saturday November 11th, 2012 - 10:30am - 12:00pm

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