Re: Self-Archiving and Journal Subscriptions: Critique of PRC Study

From: Peter Banks <>
Date: Mon, 14 May 2007 17:57:58 EDT

On 5/13/07 9:50 AM, "Stevan Harnad" <> wrote:

> (1) If/when mandated Green OA self-archiving ever makes
> subscriptions unsustainable, journals will switch to Gold OA
> publishing (which is another desirable outcome, over and above
> 100% Green OA, though not nearly as urgent):

The possibility approaches zero that journals threatened by Green
OA will convert to Gold OA--nor would it be "desirable" if they
did. The future of publishing requires true innovation, and
innovation requires some return on investment, something Gold OA
has yet to show it can produce.

Moreover, for society journals, to convert to Gold OA would often
be to betray their missions. Medical and scientific societies
exist to find cures for diseases, to improve treatments, and to
increase public awareness and understanding. Journals are one,
but only one, strategy for achieving these aims. Societies also
further their aims through the training of scientists and
clinicians, the awarding of research grants, the creation of
public awareness and education programs, and many other
activities. To the extent that societies fund such programs
through net income from publications, as long as subscriptions
are not unduly expensive nor embargoes excessively long, they are
serving their constituents and the public optimally.

It is really past time for OA advocates talk to someone other
their fellow travelers and to stop talking about "the" shift to
OA or "a" shift to OA. Yes, publishing is undergoing rapid
transformation....but not in any significant sense toward Gold
OA. The fact that no major U.S. society publication has moved to
OA or is even considering such a move suggests that the community
of volunteer scientists, researchers, and clinicians who govern
societies and direct journals has largely rejected the Gold OA

Peter Banks
Banks Publishing
Publications Consulting and Services
(703) 591-6544
CELL (703) 254-8862
FAX (703) 383-0765
Received on Tue May 15 2007 - 02:56:17 BST

This archive was generated by hypermail 2.3.0 : Fri Dec 10 2010 - 19:48:55 GMT