VARS Data Use Policy

Important notes regarding data

Data use policy:
MBARI provides these data “as is”, with no warranty, express or implied, of the data quality or consistency. It is provided without support and without obligation on the part of the Monterey Bay Aquarium Research Institute to assist in its use, correction, modification, or enhancement. For use in any publication, authors must obtain written permission from MBARI’s Director of Information and Technology Dissemination Heidi Cullen. (See contact information below.) Authors should acknowledge MBARI as the data source in those publications and provide reprints to the MBARI library. Also, it is generally expected that any science publication relying heavily on information or interpretation from one or more MBARI scientists will acknowledge those scientists, typically by including them as collaborators and co-authors when their contribution has been significant.

MBARI typically embargoes annotation and related data for two years for internal quality control and analysis. In addition, extensions to this period are sometimes granted for specific data sets, which are still undergoing review and analysis for publication. In general most of the annotations and related data older than two years are made available here through the VARS query system, but it should not be assumed that these data are representative of the entire MBARI VARS annotation database.

Quality control:
Due to the nature of ROV video data collection and analysis, identifications of marine organisms may change based on new research findings or technological advances such as higher-resolution camera systems, and biases are introduced as described above. Further, the data provided in MBARI’s video annotation database are continuously undergoing updates to reflect quality control and other improvements.

For these reasons, no specific data sets obtained from the VARS query system should be considered for scientific publication without first obtaining appropriate written verification from MBARI. Please contact us to arrange any necessary data review and distribution.

Heidi Cullen


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