Re: Pascal's Wager and Open Access (OA)

From: J.F.B.Rowland <J.F.Rowland_at_LBORO.AC.UK>
Date: Mon, 6 Dec 2004 12:49:57 -0000

Sally happens to be British, but the fears among American scholars about
Government domination of scientific communication are real. As an
Englishman, I find these fears odd, but there is an long-established
individualist philosophy in the USA that regards all governments - even the
most democratic of them - as inherently undesirable and potentially
authoritarian. I find the domination of scientific publishing by a small
number of large publishing companies an even greater danger, but that view
of mine probably reflects the different philosophical tradition that I come
from. Perhaps we can agree that a healthy scientific community requires that
there be a diversity of outlets for published research (that is, many
separate, independent publishers) and plenty of copies in existence of any
one particular article (the LOCKSS approach). If those conditions are met I
see no danger in mandating deposition in PubMed Central, even though it is
publicly owned and operated by NIH. One the other hand, mandatory
deposition in institutional repositories, each one operated by an
independent university, but all networked together by means of the OAI-PMH,
might be more reassuring to Americans.

Fytton Rowland, Loughborough University, UK.

----- Original Message -----
From: "Stevan Harnad" <>
Sent: Sunday, December 05, 2004 2:53 PM
Subject: Pascal's Wager and Open Access (OA)

> On Sun, 5 Dec 2004, Sally Morris (ALPSP) wrote:
> > I am sure members of this list are all aware of the US Government's
> > all too recent attempts (a) to censor what type of articles
> > publishers can publish and (b) to censor the countries from where
> > authors' work may be edited
Received on Mon Dec 06 2004 - 12:49:57 GMT

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