Policies on Use of AGN Watch Data

The data collected as a part of the International AGN Watch comprise a unique database for the study of temporal variability in Seyfert galaxies. The participants in this project recognize that in the long run, science will be best served by making the basic data available to all investigators, in the same way that archival data from NASA missions are eventually released to the community. However, the nature of the ground-based AGN Watch is fundamentally different from the corresponding IUE or HST programs in that all of the ground-based data were donated to the joint effort by the various participants; while participants have allowed these data to be used in the AGN Watch, they should not be expected to relinquish all rights to these data.

We have therefore formulated a policy whose intent is (1) to make sure that the individuals who obtained and reduced various data properly receive credit for their work and (2) to promote rather than impede further analysis of the data. This policy was developed with the advice of a small ad hoc committee of participants who are likely to be affected by any decisions on distribution of data; these individuals contributed large amounts of high-quality spectra which cover a large wavelength range, and these data have not been fully exploited at this time.

This policy is not comprehensive and does not cover all contingencies, and in many cases users of the data will have to exercise their own judgment. The underlying principles are (1) all astronomers should have access to the original data after some reasonable interval, and (2) those who contributed data should receive credit, in the form of co-authorships of scientific papers, on a ``first-use'' basis (i.e., the first time the data are used in a refereed publication).

The policy on distribution and use of AGN Watch data is as follows:

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Updated 18 August 1997