Re: PubScience under threat

From: Stevan Harnad <harnad_at_COGPRINTS.SOTON.AC.UK>
Date: Thu, 28 Jun 2001 13:55:36 +0100

First, it is not at all clear that this will happen. Second, if it
does, it is not clear that it will have an effect on the centralized
archives in question (e.g. PubScience). Third, even if it should have such
an effect on those centralized archives, a much more powerful
alternative, immune to such legislative whims, is already available:
Distributed, Author/Institution Archiving, all linked into a global
virtual archive through OAI interoperability (
Free open-source software for institutions to create such immune
OAI-interoperable archives is available too:

So don't despair: prepare, by distributing and interoperating. -- SH

On Wed, 27 Jun 2001, Declan Butler, Nature wrote:

> Dear Stevan
> This exclusive article...
> Budget proposal casts doubt over physics portal's future
> A powerful congressional committee has passed a budget bill which, if
> enacted, could close down PubScience, a free search service for the physical
> sciences literature, operated by the US Department of Energy (DoE).
> The budget bill, which was passed last week by the House appropriations
> subcommittee for energy and water development and was expected to be
> endorsed by the full appropriations committee, is likely have a chilling
> effect on other government-operated services, including the National Library
> of Medicine's PubMed Central, according to some observers.
> ... and an associated leader...
> Defending tax-funded navigation
> Opinion, Nature
> A congressional committee has erred in its appropriate desire to support
> free enterprise.
> ...will appear in tomorrow's Nature. I've arranged for them to be made
> available on free access now on
> I thought this may be of interest to members of this forum. Please feel free
> to copy this message to others who may be interested in this development.
> Cheers
> Declan

Stevan Harnad
Professor of Cognitive Science
Department of Electronics and phone: +44 23-80 592-582
             Computer Science fax: +44 23-80 592-865
University of Southampton
Highfield, Southampton

NOTE: A complete archive of the ongoing discussion of providing free
access to the refereed journal literature online is available at the
American Scientist September Forum (98 & 99 & 00 & 01):

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Received on Wed Jan 03 2001 - 19:17:43 GMT

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