Re: Green Angels and OA Extremists

From: Stevan Harnad <amsciforum_at_GMAIL.COM>
Date: Tue, 2 Dec 2008 12:18:05 -0500

On Tue, Dec 2, 2008 at 10:47 AM, Michael Eisen <>

      You guys are such suckers...
      Elsevier does not want self archiving to succeed!... 

Eyes wide open: We never asked publishers to support (Green) OA (or
to wish it success), just not to oppose it. And in adopting the Green
policy of formally endorsing immediate self-archiving of the
peer-reviewed final draft by the author, thereby removing the single
biggest obstacle to Green OA and Green OA mandates, Green publishers
have done exactly that: not opposed OA.
      [Elsevier's Green policy on author self-archiving is] 

      a ploy (an apparently successful ploy) on their part to
      diffuse moves towards effective universal open access

      fostering the illusion that we can
      have universal green OA without altering the economics of

How does endorsing immediate Green OA self-archiving "diffuse moves
towards effective universal open access"? 

And why does universal Green OA self-archiving require "altering the
economics of publishing"?

(Don't forget that, unlike you, Mike, I believe -- on a wealth of
evidence and analysis -- that universal Green OA [and hence universal
OA itself] can and will and must precede Gold OA publishing.
Reiterating the belief that it has to happen the other way round for
some unstated reason or other does not strengthen the empirical or
logical case for Gold first!)

      And Stevan...can you please... explain
      how the policy statement from your friends at Elsevier
      does not
      indicate that they are really opposed to real OA.

They may be well be subjectively opposed to it, in their hearts, but
their Green policy on OA self-archiving objectively removes one of
the biggest barriers to "real OA." 

So I would say that Green publishers, in removing this barrier, are
not-opposing OA, and non-Green publishers, not removing this barrier,
are opposing OA.

(The rest -- including the unsuccessful publisher lobbying against
Green OA mandates -- is of no great importance. If all publishers
were, like Elsevier, Green, then the worldwide university community's
dithering on the adoption of Green OA mandates would be all the more
evident -- and readily remediable.)

Stevan Harnad
Received on Wed Dec 03 2008 - 01:53:28 GMT

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