Re: Open Choice of various flavours

From: Heather Morrison <heatherm_at_ELN.BC.CA>
Date: Mon, 26 Jun 2006 16:58:46 -0700

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On 25-Jun-06, at 11:59 AM, Jan Velterop wrote:

> Mandates to pay publishers their asking price? Has he ever heard of
> the notions of competition and negotiation? Stevan will not have
> actually read what has been proposed, at least by the publisher I
> represent; I do not speak for others. It's this: "We propose that a
> modified S. 2695 require open access, immediately upon publication,
> of journal articles resulting from federally funded research, that
> their publication with open access be supported financially by
> ^—article processing charges^“, and that these charges be required to
> be paid out of overheads on federal research grants."
> This is about a principle; not about an 'asking price', but that
> may be a tad too subtle for Stevan. Note the words 'require open
> access, immediately upon publication" in the proposed modification
> (see also Stevan's point 4).

I would interpret this suggested change as tantamount to a
requirement to pay publishers' asking price. In scholarly
publishing, there is pressue to publish in the most prestigious
journal possible; the scholarly journals market has not been
operating on a competitive basis for decades, and there is no reason
to think that it will begin to do so with this kind of mandate.

There are many ways of providing open access; the mandate for OA is
sufficient, it is not necessary to specify the means.

If, however, there is a desire to specify any particular means, my
recommendation would be, at minimum, one copy in an institutional

Why? Security purposes. As we move to an electronic-only realm, it
would be very easy to have access to a very large percentage of our
research results under the control of people in one or two other
countries. This is all well and good as long as our research is in
friendly hands, in friendly countries. Neither of these can be
guaranteed, in the long term. Publications change hands; countries
change leadership.

The best way to guarantee ongoing access to the work of our own
researchers, is to make sure we ourselves keep a copy - in an
institutional repository.

Heather Morrison
Received on Tue Jun 27 2006 - 10:41:02 BST

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