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An alternative publishing model for academic textbook authors: Open education and writing commons
Moxley, Joe

Alternate titleWriting commons, peer production, and the future of open textbooks
PublishedApril 2012
ConferenceCambridge 2012, April 16-18: Innovation and Impact - Openly Collaborating to Enhance Education
Pages 1-6
CountryUnited Kingdom

Rather than assigning copyright to traditional or even nontraditional publishers for 5 to 15% of royalties, faculty can be their own publishers and own all of their materials – subject to institutional copyright restrictions. Teachers can now play the role of textbook authors, primarily because the Internet provides them with access to an unprecedented global reach. Textbook authors no longer need to work through a major publisher and their extensive networks of sales people. Unlike the past, when materials conditions required textbook authors to find publishers to print and publicize their work, they can now publish their work online and reach significant numbers of readers worldwide. Genres differ, from blogs and vlogs to social websites.

Faculty can enjoy very positive benefits from publishing their work at their own websites or other open-education spaces. Writing Commons exemplifies this process. While the core text of Writing Commons was written by Joe Moxley, a professor of English and director of composition at the University of South Florida, Writing Commons now peer-reviews submissions from faculty who wish to share open-education resources. Using a Creative Commons NC Share Alike 3.0 license, Writing Commons enables contributors to reach a broad audience and to productively challenge the traditional genre of a textbook. By facilitating peer production, Writing Commons exemplifies a new kind of writing textbook, a web-textbook not written by a single author in the “old-school” way but by us, by a crowd of people out there who think we need a new more interactive, more Web 2.0ish-text; one that can be easily edited to meet your needs, and one that is readily available on your phone, PDA, or netbook. Web-textbooks like Writing Commons provide an expansive resource that meets the needs of any college-level writer.

Even before its “launch date,” Writing Commons received between 150 to 200 distinct users a day, thereby demonstrating successful “impact”—one of the traditional measures of the academic reward system. Based on Joomla, an open-source Content Management Tool, Writing Commons can provide analytical information regarding the number of readers for each article.

Keywords academic publishing · academic reward system · copyright · Creative Commons · webtexts

Published atCambridge
Export optionsBibTex · EndNote · Tagged XML · Google Scholar

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