[Rd] authorship and citation

Adrian Dușa dusa.adrian at unibuc.ro
Tue Oct 6 22:58:54 CEST 2015

Hi Gabriel,

On Tue, Oct 6, 2015 at 10:59 PM, Gabriel Becker <gmbecker at ucdavis.edu>

> [...]
> At the very least, this is seems to be a flagrant violation of the
> *spirit* of the CRAN policy, which AFAIK is intended to enforce
> acknowledgement of the contributions of all copyright holders in the
> package. The fact that you are trying to bypass the policy by suggesting
> users use an unofficial citation which would not comply with the policy
> while maintaining an official one which complies, but which you don't want
> users to see  is probably a suggestion that you shouldn't do that.

But that is the very point: I read the CRAN policies twice, and there is no
official guideline on how to compile the citation.
Regarding the Source packages, the policies mention:

The ownership of copyright and intellectual property rights of all
components of the package must be clear and unambiguous (including from the
authors specification in the DESCRIPTION file). Where code is copied (or
derived) from the work of others (including from R itself), care must be
taken that any copyright/license statements are preserved and authorship is
not misrepresented.
Preferably, an ‘Authors at R’ would be used with ‘ctb’ roles for the authors
of such code. Alternatively, the ‘Author’ field should list these authors
as contributors.

Where copyrights are held by an entity other than the package authors, this
should preferably be indicated via ‘cph’ roles in the ‘Authors at R’ field, or
using a ‘Copyright’ field (if necessary referring to an inst/COPYRIGHTS

Trademarks must be respected.

Now, that requirement is already met: the former author is still in the
authors' list. So the contribution of the former author is duly
acknowledged, but the fundamental issue of my question related to the
citation file, for which the CRAN policies doesn't offer any other

If the spirit of the CRAN policies is to enforce citing each and every one
of the authors, then I don't understand why the citation from package Rcmdr
meets this spirit, while my suggestion doesn't.

I apologize for pushing this topic to the limit, but I haven't got an
answer to this question yet...

Best wishes,

PS: @Thierry: I did take a look at RODBC, but the citation information is
generated automatically upon package installation (no other special file on

Adrian Dusa
University of Bucharest
Romanian Social Data Archive
Soseaua Panduri nr.90
050663 Bucharest sector 5

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