kpearson wrote:Should every new project be required to state on its website what it intends to do with the project results during and after the project?
Personally, I think this is a great idea, and I look for information like this when looking at projects.
One thing to consider is that a project may close if it inadvertently infringes on a patent or intellectual property. In that case, the people may not be able to release or use any information, and my be under a non-disclosure agreement about the situation. While I would like to know what happens to data when a project closes, sometimes that is just not possible. (Still, in that case, the admins could say, "We are closing for reasons we are legally bound to not discuss." That would at least be something.)
It is also possible that the methods were found to be faulty late into the project. This can happen, especially in a highly experimental area. If the methods are completely inaccurate and the data unsalvageable, the admins may simply decide to close a project quietly in order to salvage their own professional standing. It's not the best reaction, but it happens.
Further, some projects are very small, and run by only a few people. (SZTAKI and Orbit@Home come to mind.) If there is a personal crisis, the individual may have too much to deal with to care. Again, this is not good, but if a project I ran suddenly had an announcement, "Our only programmer's spouse/child just passed away. The project is halting indefinitely." I would be very forgiving. Still, we have the issue of communication here.
I don't know if any of this really clarifies the issue... Reasons for closing can vary greatly, and the situation should be kept in context.
It always seems to boil down to communication, at some level or another.