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GCTLC Publishing Agreement for Learning Objects

 

1 Overview of Publishing Agreement

This document sets forth the terms and conditions for the inclusion of one or more Learning Objects (henceforth “LO") on the Green Chemistry Teaching and Learning Community (henceforth “GCTLC”) platform, including information regarding copyright, ownership of materials, and the agreement terms (henceforth “Publishing Agreement”). The GCTLC is administered by Beyond Benign, Inc. (www.beyondbenign.org) —a 501C-3 non-profit organization based in the United States dedicated to fostering a green chemistry community that empowers educators to transform chemistry education for a sustainable future. The GCTLC was developed and is hosted and maintained by Skvare LLC (www.skvare.com). All GCTLC registered users who wish to submit a LO to the GCTLC must agree to this publishing agreement before they do so.

 

2 Modification of the Agreement

Beyond Benign, Inc. (henceforth “BB”) maintain the right to modify this Publishing Agreement and may do so at any time by posting modifications on this page. Any modification is effective immediately upon posting unless otherwise stated and shall apply retroactively to LOs already published in the GCTLC. Your continued use of the GCTLC following the posting of any modification signifies your acceptance of that modification. While every attempt will be made to inform users of major updates or changes to this document, it is the sole responsibility of each user to ensure they are up to date on the Publishing Agreement for the GCTLC, and users should regularly visit this page to review the current version.

 

3 General

The library on the GCTLC (henceforth the “Library”) is a community-contributed, searchable database of green chemistry educational resources (called Learning Objects (“LOs”)). LOs can include (but are not limited to) greener alternative lab experiments, in-class activities, lecture slides, lesson summaries, exam questions and answers, assessments, course syllabi, case studies, small resource sets, video tutorials, journal articles, and books. All LOs submitted by registered users of the GCTLC for inclusion in the Library will undergo a simplified peer-review process, similar to that of academic journals and publishers. Registered users must ensure that they have included all requisite information in the submission in order for it to be properly reviewed and considered for publication in the Library, as per the Guidelines for Submission and Review of Learning Objects.

 

There are two types of LOs that can be included in the Library:

  1. Original work submitted to the GCTLC and not published elsewhere.
  2. Work published elsewhere to be referenced or linked to.

 

In the first case, registered users are considered authors or content creators. In the second case, registered users are simply sign-posting to existing content. For both cases, registered users are considered “contributors” of content to the Library. These two types of LOs and their publishing conditions for inclusion on the GCTLC are set forth below.

 

3.1 Original Work Submitted Directly to the GCTLC

Registered users may submit their own original work, whether independently authored or co-authored with other GCTLC users, to the GCTLC library as a LO. By submitting original work to the GCTLC, registered users retain ownership of the work and agree to license it for use on the GCTLC to others by selecting a Creative Commons license during the submission process.  All of the LO licenses used by the GCTLC are non-commercial, as the resources are intended for educational purposes only and for use in schools and educational programs. They cannot be sold or distributed for profit or commercial gain. The LOs licensed under these Creative Commons licenses maintain said licensing in perpetuity. For more information on Creative Commons licenses generally, please refer to the Creative Commons website (https://creativecommons.org/licenses/).

 

Here are the three Creative Commons license options offered to registered users for LOs on the GCTLC:

 

Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial 4.0 International License (CC BY-NC 4.0)

This license allows others to adapt, remix and build upon the work non-commercially. The new work must acknowledge the original work and also be non-commercial in nature, but others don’t have to license the new derivative work on the same terms. See the full legal terms of the license here: https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-nc/4.0/legalcode

 

Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-ShareAlike 4.0 International License

This license allows others to adapt, remix and build upon the work non-commercially provided they credit the original work/authors and license the new creations under the identical terms. See the full legal terms of the license here: https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-nc-sa/4.0/legalcode.

 

Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivatives 4.0 International License

This license is the most restrictive and only allows others to download the work and share it with others as long as they credit the original work/authors. They can’t change the work in any way or use it commercially. See the full legal terms of the license here: https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-nc-nd/4.0/legalcode.

 

In addition to agreeing to abide by the licensing options outlined above, by submitting original work to the GCTLC, registered users also warrant and represent that:

  1. The LO is the original work of the registered user(s) and they have the right(s) to submit it as a LO to the GCTLC.
  2. The submission of the work to the GCTLC does not violate or infringe upon any trademark, copyright, privacy, or publicity rights of any person or entity, nor does it violate any law, statute, ordinance, regulation, or other agreement.
  3. The content of the LO is accurate and complete to the best of the registered user(s)’s knowledge and ability.
  4. The content of the LO does not disclose any confidential or private information of any third party.
  5. The registered user(s), to the best of their ability, has/have included all relevant and necessary information for the LO to be used safely and correctly by other GCTLC registered users and community members.
  6. The registered user(s) has/have properly referenced or acknowledged any cited works in the LO and acquired the appropriate permissions to reproduce or include published content within the LO as required by law or other regulation.
  7. No other license terms apply to their submitted LO that are incompatible with the licensing options listed above.

 

Upon publication, the LO will become accessible and searchable within the Library. Note that some LOs may only be visible to other registered users of the GCTLC, depending on the visibility settings established for that LO.

 

3.2 Work Published Elsewhere and Included in the GCTLC

LOs that contain content or information that has been published elsewhere on the internet can be included in the Library provided that a) the content is properly referenced or linked to AND b) inclusion on the GCTLC will not violate any existing copyright, trademark or intellectual property laws, regulations or restrictions for said content. Some examples of these types of resources are provided below. Please note that registered users cannot upload attachments or files for inclusion on the Library that are normally behind a paywall and/or for which the submitting user does not have permission or authorization to publish or share them on the GCTLC. This applies regardless of whether the registered user is the author or owner of the externally published work or not.**

 

Therefore, by submitting content or work to the GCTLC that is published and/or made available elsewhere (whether or not the registered user(s) is/are the original author(s) or owner(s) of the content or work), the registered user(s) represent(s) and warrant(s) that:

  1. If permission is needed to share the work and has been granted, a copy of the permission has been included in the LO submission by the registered user(s) as an attachment (such as an email confirmation or printed/saved document).
  2. All fields in the LO submission form were written by the registered user(s) themselves (e.g., the abstract of a journal article cannot be copied directly into the GCTLC).
  3. The content of the LO is accurate and complete to the best of the registered user(s)’s knowledge and ability.
  4. The registered user(s), to the best of their ability, has/have included all relevant and necessary information for the LO to be used safely, effectively and correctly by other GCTLC registered users and community members.
  5. The registered user(s) has/have properly referenced or acknowledged any cited works in the LO and acquired the appropriate permissions to reproduce or include published content within the LO.

 

Examples of works published elsewhere that may be included in the GCLTC library include (but are not limited to):

  • Links to articles in peer reviewed journals through publishing organizations (e.g., ACS Publications, Royal Society of Chemistry, Elsevier, etc.)
  • Links to online books
  • Links to YouTube, Vimeo or other videos (such as tutorials, demonstrations of experiments, short lessons, etc.)
  • Links to personal, reference, or organizational websites (such as Wordpress sites, reference sites such as Chem21, or websites such as the ACS Institute)

 

3.3 Including Third Party Content in LOs

BB and the Chief Editor of the GCTLC recommend using the American Chemical Society Style Guide for formatting citations and bibliographies. Registered users who wish to reproduce third party content (such as figures and graphs) in their LOs must acquire the appropriate permissions and include all necessary statements to that effect (e.g., “Reproduced with permission from ref. ####” where #### is the number of the reference in the bibliography). Said registered users must also submit copies of these permission forms with the LO. If it is determined that those forms are missing and needed, the registered user(s) who has contributed the LO may be asked to submit them prior to publication.

 

3.4 Conditions of Peer Review of LOs

Following submission of a LO to the GCTLC by (a) registered user(s), a simplified peer-review process will take place to determine if the LO is appropriate for inclusion in the Library (see the Guidelines for Submission and Review of Learning Objects). Note that all LOs submitted to the Library must undergo peer review (including both LOs containing original content authored/created by the submitting registered user(s) and LOs containing content published elsewhere).

 

By submitting a LO to the GCTLC, (a) registered user(s) agree(s) and accept(s) that:

  1. Their submitted LO(s) will undergo a simplified peer-review process, overseen or conducted by the Chief Editor of the GCTLC, to determine appropriateness and relevance to the community.
  2. The views, feedback, and comments of the Chief Editor of the GCTLC and any other reviewers are their own and do not necessarily reflect the views of BB or of Skvare.
  3. While the feedback and comments of reviewers are weighed heavily in the peer-review process, the final decision regarding inclusion of a LO in the Library ultimately rests with the Chief Editor of the GCTLC in conjunction with BB and, if necessary, the GCTLC Leadership Committee/Advisory Group.

 

3.5 Reposting or Publishing GCTLC Content Elsewhere

LOs published in the Library may be adapted, remixed and reposted provided such action adheres to the Creative Commons licensing assigned to those said LOs. Note that at present, the GCTLC does not have any agreements (reciprocal or otherwise) with other publishers to allow registered users to publish the same content in other platforms or with other publishers (including, but not limited to, the American Chemical Society, the Royal Society of Chemistry, Elsevier, Springer Nature, Wiley, ChemRxiv, and Taylor & Francis). Updates will be made to this section if such agreements come into existence in the future.

 

3.6 Access to LOs and Associated Content

Registered users agree and accept that, once published, any content they upload to the GCTLC Library as part of a LO submission will become freely available in open-access format either to all other registered users on the GCTLC or to the general public (i.e., anonymous visitors to the GCTLC). This may include access to users who are students. It is therefore important to understand that the GCTLC does not distinguish user roles or types when making content available to the community, and as such students may be able to gain access to exam questions and answers, assessments, and other material published on the GCTLC. Registered users are encouraged to consider this carefully when designing and uploading their LOs to the GCTLC.

Registered users submitting LOs to the Library also accept and acknowledge that any associated information or downloadable content contained within LOs that is normally restricted in visibility may become available to anonymous visitors by mistake or through unintentional or unexpected breach of data, theft, functional issues or technical errors, or through other unforeseen circumstances. BB as well as Skvare LLC cannot be held liable for such unintentional or unexpected issues and users accept all associated risks of uploading their LOs to the Library, as per the Terms and Conditions of Use of the GCTLC.

 

3.7 Editing LOs on the GCTLC

Once a LO is published in the Library, the registered user(s) who submitted the LO has/have the ability to go back in and edit their published LO at any time. However, any such edits are required to undergo a second peer review. As soon as a registered user edits their published LO, the LO will be automatically moved back into the peer review process and, once resubmitted, will be sent to the Chief Editor for a second round of peer review.

 

3.8 Withdrawing LOs from the GCTLC

Registered users have the right and ability to withdraw their LO(s) from the Library at any time, including prior to, during, and after the peer review process/once published.

Furthermore, the Chief Editor of the GCTLC, BB and Skvare LLC reserve the right to retract or remove any LO from the Library at any time, for any reason, without requiring notification to or prior permission from the registered user(s) who contributed the content to the Library.  For example, if any LO is found to violate the terms of this Publishing Agreement, access to it may be disabled. Removal from the Library may also occur if required by law or if a copyright infringement has been identified (please refer to the Terms and Conditions of Use for the GCTLC for more details).

By using the GCTLC, users acknowledge and agree that BB and Skvare LLC cannot guarantee access to and/or hosting of content (including LOs) that is published through the GCTLC platform.

 

3.9 Reporting of Copyright Infringements or Other Issues Related to LOs

Registered users on the GCLTC can report any copyright, trademark, or intellectual property infringements or violations through the GCTLC’s online reporting form (see the Terms and Conditions of Use document for more details).

If the Chief Editor of the GCTLC or BB receive notice that a Learning Object or other content posted to or through the GCTLC may infringe the rights of thirds parties, including their intellectual property rights, the Chief Editor of the GCTLC and/or BB reserve the right (in their sole discretion) to disclose information about the user who has posted the material to those third parties, in order for them to contact the user directly regarding their concerns. In addition, while every attempt will be made to prevent any copyright, trademark or intellectual property infringements through the submission and review process for LOs, BB cannot be held responsible or accountable for said infringements and, if necessary, will take any and all necessary immediate action to rectify said infringements.

 

4 Limitations and Liability

While every effort is made to review and ensure the quality and safety of the content contained in LOs through the peer-review process, the Chief Editor of the GCTLC, BB and all associated peer reviewers cannot be held responsible for any errors or issues (including copyright issues) with resources published on the Library, nor can they fully ensure the safety or appropriate use of the resources by others, including for the audience level indicated. As such, by submitting any original work (as defined above) to the GCTLC platform, (a) registered users accept(s) full responsibility for the accuracy of the information included in their LO(s), including all outlined safety hazards and recommended personal protective equipment and safety precautions. Said registered user(s) also agree(s) to update the LO(s) in the Library as needed and/or when new information becomes available.

For resources submitted for inclusion in the Library that are NOT original work and are published elsewhere, the submitting registered user(s) warrant(s) that they have ensured to the best of their ability the accuracy and reliability of the information included in the external resource(s). BB and the Chief Editor for the GCTLC are not responsible for ensuring LOs are up to date, including (but not limited to) ensuring links are working, and summaries or abstracts are up to date. BB and the Chief Editor for the GCTLC also cannot guarantee the accuracy, quality or completeness of information available through external resources referenced through LOs in the Library, nor will they be held liable for any issues around safety, hazard identification, and/or use and/or distribution of the external resource. While peer reviewers of the LOs will do their best to ensure the rules, regulations and requirements of this Publishing Agreement are being followed, it is ultimately up to the registered user(s) submitting the LO(s) to ensure that inclusion of the LO(s) in the GCTLC does not violate this Publishing Agreement. Any LO(s) found to be in violation of this Publishing Agreement may need to be removed from the Library.

 

4.1 Display of Licenses

It is the sole responsibility of the registered user(s) submitting the LO(s) to ensure all pertinent information is displayed for their submitted and published LO(s) and to contact the Chief Editor or the administrators of the GCTLC if any such pertinent information is incorrect or missing. Similarly, it is the sole responsibility of registered users to determine what permission(s), if any, they may need in order to include materials in or use materials from the Library and, if necessary, to obtain such permission(s).

BB and Skvare LLC endeavor to provide information about the copyright status of LOs in the Library and to identify any other terms and conditions that may apply to the use of such materials. However, BB and Skvare LLC offer no guarantee or assurance that all pertinent information will be provided or that the information provided is correct in each circumstance.

 

4.2 Copyright of Content on the GCTLC

Except for LOs and other user-generated content on the GCTLC (which are made available through the GCTLC pursuant to the terms of this Publishing Agreement and the Terms and Conditions of Use), all text, metadata, user interfaces and visual interfaces (including graphics, photographs, sounds, music, and artwork), trademarks, logos, computer code, and any and all compilations thereof (collectively, “GCTLC Content”), including but not limited to the design, structure, selection, coordination, expression, “look and feel,” and arrangement of GCTLC Content, is owned, controlled, or licensed by or to BB, and is protected by trade dress, copyright, and trademark laws, and is subject to various other intellectual property law protections. Except as expressly provided in this Publishing Agreement and/or the Terms and Conditions of Use or agreed upon in writing with BB, registered users of and anonymous visitors to the GCTLC are prohibited from copying, reproducing, modifying, distributing, displaying, performing, or transmitting any of the GCTLC Content for any purpose, and nothing otherwise stated or implied in the GCTLC platform confers on said registered users or anonymous visitors any license or right to do so.

 

4.3 Links to Third Party Sites

Regardless of the type of LO submitted to the GCTLC (whether original content or published elsewhere), LOs may link to third party sites that are not under the control of or owned by BB or Skvare LLC. Links from the GCTLC are provided as a convenience and/or for informational purposes only; they do not indicate endorsement, sponsorship of, or affiliation with the third party or content of the linked website, including any advertisements that may be posted. BB and Skvare LLC have no control over and bear no responsibility for the accuracy, legality, or content of the externally linked sites. Privacy policies and practices for such linked sites may differ from the Terms and Conditions of Use for the GCTLC (and privacy policies contained therein). Registered users are solely responsible for the proper function, spelling and use of said links within their submitted and published LOs, and are urged to read the privacy policies and terms and conditions of such sites before sharing the links in their submitted and published LOs. Registered users agree to present any links in their LOs in a manner that does not convey the impression that BB and/or Skvare LLC endorse(s), whether expressly or implicitly, any products, services, or opinions provided through said links or websites.

 

5 Violation of this Agreement - Termination

If any registered user(s) is/are found to be in violation of this Publishing Agreement or other agreements or guidelines which may be associated with this Publishing Agreement, BB, the Chief Editor for the GCTLC, and/or Skvare LLC have the right to take any number of responsive actions, including (but not limited to):

 

  • Removal of any LO from the Library that is found to be in violation of this agreement or the Terms and Conditions of Use.
  • Removal of privileges related to submission and/or review of LOs in the Library for said registered user(s).
  • Suspension of said registered user(s)’s account(s).
  • Termination of said registered user(s)’s account(s).

 

Please note that it is BB’s policy to terminate the accounts of GCTLC users who repeatedly violate the copyrights, trademark rights, or other rights of third parties.

If BB takes any legal action against a registered user as a result of the registered user’s violation of this Publishing Agreement, BB will be entitled to recover from said registered user, and said registered user agrees to pay, all reasonable attorneys’ fees and costs of such action, in addition to any other relief granted. The registered user agrees that BB, the Chief Editor for the GCTLC, and Skvare LLC will not be liable to said registered user or to any third party for termination of the registered user’s access to the GCTLC platform, including loss of data. The disclaimer of warranties, the limitation of liability, and the jurisdiction and applicable law provisions will survive any termination.

 

**Special exemptions may be permissible depending on the document/published work and any licenses associated with its use, distribution and/or adaptation.  To determine if a LO can be exempt, please consult with the Chief Editor at chief_editor@gctlc.org.