Stevan Harnad's misconception 3

From: Velterop, Jan, Springer UK <Jan.Velterop_at_SPRINGER.COM>
Date: Wed, 28 Feb 2007 18:03:18 +0100

Misconception: Publishers think protecting their risks outweighs the
benefits of OA.

Stevan Harnad mentions two risks that publishers face. The risk of
self-archiving mandates to undermine subscription income and the risk of
authors/institutions/funders not willing to pay enough for OA
publishing. Perhaps unlike some tenured scientists, publishers are used
to living with risk. And there are more than Stevan mentions. For
instance the risk of not engaging in OA at all.

When Stevan talks about the 'benefits of OA' he means the benefits of OA
to the formally published, peer-reviewed and certified literature. OA to
research results themselves is easy enough. Authors can just post their
work on n'importe quel web server.

Outfits that are asked to arrange this formal publication process are
known as 'publishers'. The benefits of OA are the benefits of access to
the formal literature. Without 'publishers', no formal literature. The
risk to publishers *is* the risk to the benefits of OA.

Jan Velterop

> -----Original Message-----
> From: SPARC Open Access Forum []
> On Behalf Of Stevan Harnad
> Sent: 28 February 2007 04:09
> To: SPARC Open Access Forum
> Subject: [SOAF] Reply to Jan Velterop, and a Challenge to
> "OA" Publishers Who Oppose Mandating OA via Self-Archiving
> ** Cross-Posted **
> Now both forms of OA represent some possible risk to
> publishers' revenue
> streams:
> With Green OA, there is the risk that the authors' free online
> versions will make subscription revenue decline, possibly
> unsustainably.
> With Gold OA, there is the risk that either subscription
> revenue will
> decline unsustainably or author/institution publication
> charges will
> not generate enough revenue to cover expenses (or make a profit).
> So let us not deny the possibility that OA in either form may
> represent some risk to publishers' revenues and to their
> current way of doing business. The real question is whether
> or not that risk, and the possibility of having to adapt to
> it by changing the way publishers do business, outweighs the
> vast and certain benefits of OA to research, researchers,
> universities, research institutions, research funders, the
> R&D industry and the tax-paying public.
Received on Wed Feb 28 2007 - 19:15:18 GMT

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