Open Access News

News from the open access movement

Sunday, June 08, 2008

Closing the gap between scholar interest and scholar action

Stevan Harnad, OA Primer for the Perplexed: II, Open Access Archivangelism, June 8, 2008.

Summary:  There are two forms of OA: free access online, and free access plus re-use licenses of various kinds. The first is provisionally called "OA1" and the second "OA2". These are place-holders pending better terms to be proposed shortly. Green OA self-archiving can in principle provide either OA1 or OA2. All authors [of peer-reviewed journal articles] want OA1 (i.e., all authors want their published articles freely accessible online). Nevertheless, most authors still think it is not possible to make their articles freely accessible online (for at least 34 reasons, each of them leading to Zeno's Paralysis, all of them groundless, the most frequent ones being that authors think it would violate copyright, bypass peer review, or entail a lot of work on their part). So although all peer-reviewed journal article authors (and definitely not not true of all book authors, software authors, music authors, video authors) do want their work to be freely accessible to all would-be users, not just those who can afford the access tolls, most (85%) of them still don't make their articles freely accessible online (by self-archiving them). That is why Green OA self-archiving mandates by researchers' universities and funders are needed: To cure refereed journal article authors of the 34 unfounded phobias of Zeno's Paralysis.