Open Access News

News from the open access movement

Saturday, March 17, 2007

Harnad and Kurtz

Stevan Harnad, Don't Count Your (Golden) Chickens Before Your (Green) Eggs Are Laid, Open Access Archivangelism, March 15, 2007.  Excerpt:

Michael Kurtz writes:

  Research is growing. (True, but that is independent of OA.) 

  Publication costs are not a large percentage of total research costs. (True, but publication costs are already being paid in full, today, by subscription fees; any new publication charges today hence mean additional funds redirected from research -- or from elsewhere -- to double-pay, unless the existing subscription fees are redirected toward paying the publication charges.)

  OA enhances research progress. (True)

  Author publication charges are not new (in some fields). (True, but new OA publication charges, today, would be new, and additional, unless their payment was redirected from subscription savings.)

  Mandated Green OA could cause subscription collapse. (Possibly, but if it did, that would simultaneously release the subscription savings to be redirected to pay for Gold OA publication charges [probably reduced to just the cost of peer review]; and meanwhile we would already have 100% [Green] OA, either way.)

  In some fields, Central Repositories (CRs) like Arxiv have a larger Green OA percentage of total research output than Institutional Repositories (IRs). (A few fields do provide Green OA, unmandated, today, but most don't; that's why we need mandates; IRs that mandate Green reach 100% OA within about two years; institutions and funders mandate; "fields" do not; institutions wish to record, showcase, and maximize the impact of their own research output; "fields" do not; CRs can harvest from IRs; the locus of deposit for mandates should be researchers' own IRs.) ...