Open Access News

News from the open access movement

Saturday, April 26, 2003

Gerry McKiernan, TheScientificWorld: An Integrated, Scholarly Knowledge Network, Library Hi Tech News, 19, 2 (March 2002) pp. 21-29. Unfortunately, neither the text nor an abstract is free online.

Zetoc (the British Library table of content service) is running a second user survey. The results of last year's user survey are now online.

JISC is hoping to fund someone "to undertake a synthesis and analysis of the joint JISC and National Science Foundation (NSF) International Digital Library Initiative Projects (DLI)." Proposals are due by May 28.

Lee van Orsdel and Kathleen Born, Big Chill on the Big Deal? Library Journal, April 15, 2003. A very good survey of the reasons why the STM journal market is dysfunctional. It also points to some open-access alternatives, such as BMC, BioOne, Project Euclid, and DSpace. The article also contains nine tables of eye-opening data.

Herbert van de Sompel has been awarded the Frederick G. Kilgour Award for Research in Library and Information Technology for 2003. He was cited both for his work on contextual linking (creating SFX, helping to standardize OpenURL) and on the Open Archives Initiative. The Kilgour Award is sponsored by OCLC and LITA. Congratulations, Herbert!

Summaries of talks at the NINCH town meeting, Digital Publishing: The Rights Issues (NY, February 22), are now online.

The May issue of Walt Crawford's Cites & Insights is now online. In this issue Walt has a section on Scholarly Article Access, where he summarizes his mixed feelings about open-access and reviews some recent articles on the subject. Among those he reviews are my Removing the Barriers to Research, David Prosser's proposal for converting traditional journals, and John Willinsky's analysis of open-access publishing by professional societies.

Tuesday, April 22, 2003

The Ohio legislature is considering a bill that would prohibit state agencies from publishing any electronic information that is provided by two or more commercial publishers, even if the information was generated with taxpayer support and even if (or perhaps I should say, especially if) the commercial publishers charge fees for accessing the information and the state agencies provide it free of charge. The bill has nine co-sponsors, all Republicans. According to Mary Alice Baish of the American Association of Law Libraries, the bill was drafted by the Americal Legislative Exchange Council, a national organization of conservative state legislators. Similar bills have been introduced in a handful of other states but so far defeated in each one. I quote, and second, these words of Baish: "This bill threatens the right of residents in Ohio from accessing state government information, created with their tax dollars, at no cost through the Internet. It is an abhorrent model that must be stopped short. Please get involved, especially if you have members in Ohio who can respond immediately to this serious threat." (Thanks to Scholcomm and C-FIT.)

Monday, April 21, 2003

STM - the International Association of Scientific, Technical and Medical Publishers, is holding its Spring 2003 conference on the subject of Universal access to STM information: by evolution or revolution?

The Council of Science Editors 46th Annual Meeting 3-6 May 2003, Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, includes a keynote speech by Stevan Harnad entitled Author/Institution Self-Archiving and the Future of Peer-Reviewed Journals.

More on the fate of ERIC....In the April 21 issue of Information Today, Barbara Quint summarizes the latest developments. The plan for reorganizing the Department of Education (DOE), which runs ERIC, calls for abolishing the 16 ERIC clearinghouses, the 10 adjunct clearinghouses, the ERIC Processing and Reference Facility, and the ERIC Document Reproduction Service. The DOE would hire an independent contractor to take their place and centralize the operation. The new operation will perform most but not all all the services of the current ERIC, which has stirred ERIC defenders to try to modify the plan. ERIC currently gets about 70 million hits per month.

More on the state-level DMCAs....The EFF has issued a press release denouncing them. Excerpt: "The product of stealth lobbying efforts by the Motion Picture Association of America (MPAA), these new measures are aimed at criminalizing the possession of what the MPAA calls 'unlawful communication and access devices,' but which are so broad that they could ban critical security and privacy tools online as well as restrict what machines you can connect to the cable, satellite, and Internet lines in your home."

Sunday, April 20, 2003

Version 48 of Charles Bailey's Scholarly Electronic Publishing Bibliography is now online. The new edition cites more than 1850 books, articles, and other sources on electronic scholarly publishing.