Re: Poynder on OA in Europe

From: Stevan Harnad <>
Date: Sun, 18 Mar 2007 17:51:10 +0000

Barry Mahon wrote:

> Why is anybody surprised [that the EC capitulated to the publishing
> industry lobby and failed to mandate Green OA]? The EC support for R&D
> is an economic activity, it is designed to create economic development,
> jobs, etc.

Since when is the publishing industry research's R&D dimension? The vast
R&D industries are research's R&D dimension. Research publishing is
merely a small service industry in comparison to them: A flea on the
tail of the dog.

> The political justification for the vast amounts the EC has spent and is
> spending of the various Framework programmes is that they will keep the
> EU ahead in the technical/economic game. Any 'guarantee' of OA by the EC
> would send commercial partners running for cover. My own recollection
> of the programmes is that commercial partners in EU projects were very
> reluctant to publish anything, at least until they had patents and other
> cover in place.

OA is about mandating free online access to *published* research
findings, not to unpublished research findings!

Neither researchers who want to use and build further research on one
another's published research findings, nor the R&D industry that wants
to apply the further research that researchers build on one another's
published research findings in order to generate products, services,
jobs, economic development, etc. can do so if researchers cannot *access*
one another's published research findings.

Barry Mahon (not for the first time) completely misses the point.
OA is not about blocking patents on unpublished research, it is about
unblocking access to published research.

Stevan Harnad
Received on Sun Mar 18 2007 - 18:30:07 GMT

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