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Inconsistent use of author and creator properties across crosswalks

See original GitHub issue

Hey folks: Ahead of the SSRCW, a few of us got a question about guidance on the author and creator property for those looking to produce new crosswalks. I didn’t quite know the best guidance so I did some looking around since I’ve only been following along with this project’s development.

On the Terms page, both author and creator are listed and defined as:

author: The author of this content or rating. Please note that author is special in that HTML 5 provides a special mechanism for indicating authorship via the rel tag. That is equivalent to this and may be used interchangeably.

creator: The creator/author of this CreativeWork. This is the same as the Author property for CreativeWork.

I find these definitions a bit at odds with one another and this ambiguity is effectively imported into codemeta from How I read it, creator is synonymized with author in the definition of creator, but the definition of author hints at a meaning that’s more consistent with “metadata creator” (“author of this content or rating”).

Looking at the repo and website a bit more, I found:

  • In various issues on this repository, it seems the group is more in favor of an interpretation of author as synonymous with creator, potentially preferring author
  • The Create tool on the website generates JSON with the creator property (but describes the id property as being for the “author”)
  • 16/29 crosswalks provide mappings for for author, 8/29 for creator
  • Some crosswalks have mappings for one and not the other
  • Some crosswalks map the same term in the source to both author and creator

Ultimately, as most people here probably already understand, roles such as “author” and “creator” are super challenging to map cleanly from an arbitrary number of source vocabularies (e.g., in R, “creator” is actually “maintainer” (huh?), in WikiData, “author” is actually a subproperty of “creator”, etc.). Also, some source vocabularies really need to distinguish between author/creator and some do not.

However, I think it’d helpful to:

  • Do a pass over the existing crosswalks for consistency and correctness WRT author and creator
  • Provide guidance in the codemeta docs for the usage of these two properties so authors of new crosswalks know what to do and what not to do

I’d appreciate others’ thoughts on this and could lend a hand with any work that’s decided upon.

Issue Analytics

  • State:open
  • Created 4 years ago
  • Comments:6 (5 by maintainers)

github_iconTop GitHub Comments

cboettigcommented, Oct 22, 2019

+1 for a PR, I believe that would be an appropriate way to welcome further comment and move forward. Matt, thoughts?

On Mon, Oct 21, 2019 at 2:59 PM Bryce Mecum wrote:

Thanks @cboettig and @mbjones Is this a change that’s big enough to need to establish larger group consensus before going ahead? Would a PR be welcome harmonizing these?

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Carl Boettiger

amoebacommented, Mar 5, 2020

Hey @cboettig, @mbjones I’ve taken a look at this and sent over a PR. Have a look.

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