Here is my overall perspective on what is needed in this line of research:
Analysis of what might actually be permitted (or forbidden) under CC licenses. With any legal matter, there is the question of what the writer of the law / license intended and how others might reasonably interpret the words. Specific areas that need attention include:
- permission for re-enclosure for profit, whether accidental or purposive. CC licenses do not imply that works need to be free of charge. The licenses forbid adding DRM to a work, but they do not forbid paywalls before one gets to the work (this is probably impossible, given that most of us have to go through a paywall of some kind to access the internet per se). From my perspective this is a signficant danger, one that could be a huge setback for the open access movement. For example, if commercial medical publishers moved to CC-BY open access then changed course and decided to release these works as toll access only (CC-BY does not preclude this), and then lobby to remove funding for PubMedCentral and other publicly owned open access archives, then it is feasible that massive amounts of works made OA via CC-BY could very quickly revert to toll access, with no recourse available to authors or their funders. This is the primary reason I argue against CC-BY as a default.
- author moral rights are stronger under CC BY attribute than automatic copyright. What are the implications for scholarship? I argue that at minimum this is the opposite of the intention of BOAI.
- What kinds of re-use of scholarly works would actually be desirable and useful for scholarship, and what are the conditions where this would make sense to the authors? Translation is one example - there are obvious advantages to scholarship to making this as easy as possible, but obviously dangers to authors' reputations if poor translations are attributed to the author. There is probably some middle ground. For example, automated translation services are available even for many works not CC licensed for reuse. This does not appear to be contentious, perhaps because the translation services are not portraying the results as authorized versions.
Academically appropriate comments are welcome - by which I mean, state who you are and where you are coming from. For example if you are affiliated with an organization that has a vested interest in or commitment to a particular CC license, this affiliation should be stated in your comment.