Re: Re: Green OA is no threat to grants: Only Gold OA, today, might be

From: Jonathan Eisen <jaeisen_at_UCDAVIS.EDU>
Date: Thu, 25 Jan 2007 11:22:33 -0800

I find the arguments of both sides somewhat interesting and am glad
to be getting better informed about the possible benefits of the
Green OA model. However, I find some of the statements regarding
these possible benefits to be unconvincing at least from the
discussion here. I am open to being convinced otherwise but here are
some of my concerns ...

1. The statement that Green OA can be mandates immediately but Gold
OA cannot is not convincing.

Why not? I believe there are sufficient Gold OA journals in
existence now (well, depending on exactly how you define Gold OA) to
take publications. And if the US, EU and other governments said "In
six months, all government funded research can only be published in
Gold OA journals ..." I do not see how that is different from the
governments saying "In six months, all government funded research
must be available in OA archives of some type"

What is the basis for the idea that authors can be forced to deposit
articles in archives but cannot be forced to publish in Gold OA

2. The idea that Green OA and Gold OA are roughly equivalent in terms
of benefit to society is not convincing.

Yes, Green OA does theoretically make papers available for people to
read. But first of all, to me Gold OA is about more than making
papers available in some archive. It is also about giving the
authors the copyright to their articles, and allowing anyone to make
use of the articles in any way they see fit as long as they keep the
original reference information intact. We are making significant use
of this option in teaching and in public education. Green OA as far
as I know does not allow for this to be done.

3. The idea that going first to Green OA will then likely lead to a
shift to Gold OA is not convincing either.

While I do not want to engender fighting between the gold and green
OA supporters, I think that it is possible that a shift to a Green OA
model will actually prevent, not promote, a Gold OA model. Yes, if
everyone cancels their subscriptions then journals may be forced to
try a Gold OA model. But it is unclear if everyone will cancel
subscriptions if Green OA is mandated. I guess this depends on the
terms of the mandate --- if the mandate says "immediately available
in archives" maybe people will cancel subscriptions. But if the
mandate says "after six months ..." then I think we will not see as
much subscription cancellation as would be needed.

Thus if, as I believe, Gold OA is better, then I am still willing to
fight for it to be required now, rather than doing the two step model
of requiring Green OA first. This is under my assumption from #1
above that Gold OA could be mandated now.
Received on Thu Jan 25 2007 - 21:40:02 GMT

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