Open Access News

News from the open access movement

Sunday, October 07, 2007

Librarians optimistic about OA

The LITA Blog has some notes on a discussion moderated by Gregg Silvis on libraries in 2023, apparently at the LITA Forum 2007 (Denver, October 4-7, 2007).  Excerpt:

The first question Silvis posed to the participants was, What if there were 100,000,000 books available for free in full text?

First the group critiqued NetLibrary’s business model, then brainstormed about a “killer app” that would make ebooks enjoyable to read. Some folks seemed more comfortable than others with the idea of a device that could be directly implanted into the optic nerve....

Whatever happens with ebooks, everyone agreed that maintaining equity of access will continue to be an important and central concern for libraries, and that our role as a place for people to connect will continue to be one of our mainstays.

Next, Silvis asked, What if copyright legislation were rewritten to more reasonably reflect real world practices?

We know we’re supposed to come to a complete stop at a stop sign, to obey the speed limit, and thinking back on the prohibition era, to abstain completely from alcohol unless given a written prescription by a doctor (nice graphic, Gregg), but, well, you know how it is....

The conversation then turned to scholarly publishing, peer review, and one of my favorite topics, open access. There seemed to be a shared sense of optimism in the room about the future of scholarly publishing; specifically it was said that open access journals are developing a strong peer review infrastructure. That’s good news for those of us who won’t be up for tenure for a few years yet and who’d like to see all publicly funded research and scholarship be made freely available to everyone....