Replying to @acrymble's post:
I think this is a really great topic for us to be considering. I'm involved in two different ways of citing contributors to a project, so I'll add this as fuel for thought--
At projects at the Center for Digital Research in the Humanities, we use our project About pages to list the roles that everyone in a project contributes to. This includes roles that change over time (for example, I'm listed twice on the Cody Archive staff page, first as a research editor and then as project manager). This sort of credit page, I believe, is similar across various CDRH projects.
The second area where I'm having to think through these issues is with an article I'm co-authoring with some collaborators. During the fall 2011 semester, I was enrolled in the digital humanities seminar with Prof. William G. Thomas, and one of the projects we had in the class was to build an iOS application. Towards the end of the course we decided as a group that we wanted to author an article about our experience (which is currently in progress). However, not everyone in the seminar had an interest or the time to contribute to a written piece -- so, I'm working with three others to draft the essay. However, we also did not want to leave out our fellow seminar colleagues -- they obviously contributed to the iOS app and, thus, deserve credit for their contributions (even if they are not part of the essay side). So, what we have done is to list the four of us as authors alphabetically, and we cite our colleagues (alphabetically) in the footnotes as contributors to the project. We have made it clear to them that they can cite this on their C.V.'s even though their names may not appear on the byline. In this case, it's more about acknowledgements rather than authorship.
My other thought on this (which I think follows other conventions) is to take a "science-y" approach and list everybody. What I would envision here is listing the author(s) that do the most writing first then follow with the rest of the contributors alphabetically. But that's for published projects. I think it's slightly more complicated with digital projects that have continual evolution and, by extension, revolving collaborators (people come and go, collaborators take on new roles, etc). Listing everyone on the Cody About page, for example, would become unwieldy to place on a C.V.
I do like the general themes of the International Committee of Medical Journal Editors you cite above. So, authorship for digital projects could follow similar themes and lay these out clearly in a project narrative (as Bethany notes above). Using their model, we might think about:
- Defining authorship around 1) substantial quality intellectual content; 2) the contribution of data, analysis, or interpretation; 3) public responsibility for the quality of the project. The acquisition of funding is a contribution, but perhaps not authorship credit.
- Authorship and credit should be clearly established at the beginning of a project. The principals of a project should be generous in their shared credit and inclusion.
- Contributors not listed as authors have to claim their own stake and responsibility in a project. They perhaps cannot speak about the project as a whole (say, to the public or to a hiring committee) but can discuss their role(s) within the project.
- There should be a sense of shared knowledge production that should be conveyed in credit, no matter the rank, status, or contribution of an individual.
Anyways, these are some quick and dirty thoughts. There are a lot of other issues to think about (should digital centers represent large, multi-group projects?) but hopefully I've added a little food for thought. This is a topic I think about often, so I'll be closely watching FairCite and the discussions that continue around it.