Re: Author Publication Charge Debate

From: Stevan Harnad <>
Date: Mon, 9 Feb 2004 18:23:15 +0000

On Mon, 9 Feb 2004, Suhail A. R. wrote:

> [S]upporting OA journals, defeats the purpose of self archiving.
> We cannot support both.

But why on earth not? Is the following not an executable algorithm?

    Unified Dual Open-Access-Provision Policy:

    BOAI-2 ("gold"): Publish your article in a suitable open-access
            journal whenever one exists [and if you can afford it].

    BOAI-1 ("green"): Otherwise, publish your article in a suitable
            toll-access journal and also self-archive it.

>sh> let the author (i) continue publishing in TA journals, (ii) continue
>sh> spending his money to purchase access to TA articles (by other authors)
>sh> *and* (iii) provide OA to his own articles (for other authors) by
>sh> self-archiving them. If those other authors do the same, that just might
>sh> start saving this author some of the money he is spending to purchase
>sh> TA articles. Forget about the spectre of unaffordable OA publication
>sh> charges: They are counterfactual conjectures at this time, and there
>sh> are good reasons to believe they will never happen.
> I completely agree with you here.

But isn't this precisely the same as the above?

> At the same time we must make sure that TA survives by giving them ideas
> to survive the arrival of OA journals. One of these is embargoed access.

It is perfectly alright for a "green" TA journal (i.e., one which
officially endorses *immediate* author self-archiving) to wait a year
before providing direct toll-free access to all of its contents. It's even
alright for a green TA journal not to provide direct toll-free access to
its contents at all (and instead leave all OA provision to its authors, through

I just hope that what you are recommending here now -- by way of "giving
publishers ideas" as to an immediate "remedy" for some hypothetical
future malady -- is not that instead of adopting a "green" policy of
endorsing immediate self-archiving by their authors, TA journals should
instead endorse only *emargoed* self-archiving by their authors --
delayed by a year! That would not just be the tail shaking the dog,
but shaking it right off!

Stevan Harnad
Received on Mon Feb 09 2004 - 18:23:15 GMT

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