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Tuesday, May 05, 2009

More on the Heidelberg misconceptions

Stevan Harnad, Heidelberg Humanities Hocus Pocus, Open Access Archivangelism, May 4, 2009.  Excerpt:

Yet another declaration/petition/statement/manifesto concerning OA has been drafted, this time...full of...anti-OA canards and nonsequiturs: The Heidelberg Appeal ("Heidelberger Appel"), launched by the German text critic, Roland Reuss.

(These misunderstandings are intentional when promulgated by publishers lobbying against OA [e.g., the "DC Principles," the "Prism Coalition" and the "Brussels Declaration"] but not in the case of scholars waxing righteously indignant about their rights without first coming to a clear understanding of what is really at issue, as in the case of Herr Reuss.)

An article in the 2 May 2009 Zuercher Zeitung seems to catch and correct a few of the ambiguities and absurdities of Reuss's singularly wrong-headed argument, but far from all of them.

Someone still has to state, loud and clear (and in German!), that Herr Reuss (and the signatories he has managed to inspire to follow him in his failure to grasp what is actually at issue) is:

  1. conflating consumer piracy of authors' non-give-away texts (largely books) with author give-aways of their own journal articles (which is what Open Access is about);
  2. conflating Open Access with Google book scanning;
  3. conflating "Gratis" Open Access (free online access), which is what all the Green Open Access Self-Archiving and self-archiving mandates are, with "Libre" (free online access PLUS re-use rights), which only some Gold OA journals are providing, and again, in accordance with the wishes and agreement of the author....

Comment.  Also see our past posts on the Heidelberg Appeal.  I should add that I've been tagging much more Heidelberg news and comment for OATP than I've been blogging here at OAN.  I'm using the tag, oa.heidelberg_appeal. If you're interested, see the Connotea tag library for oa.heidelberg_appeal.