Open Access (the book): Difference between revisions
|Line 1:||Line 1:|
== About the book ==
== About the book ==
* Peter Suber, [http://mitpress.mit.edu/
* The [http://
* I to
<!-- * Some of the
(this )I and to . [:..edu] the .
of the I OA
of the . But
to a for the 'an
In I to the . . (I in and .
Revision as of 14:53, 9 August 2022
- This is the home page for my book, Open Access (MIT Press, 2012). I use it for posting updates and supplements, and linking to reviews, translations, and OA editions. — Peter Suber.
- Suggested short URL for this page = bit.ly/oa-book
About the book
- The book was released in June 2012 and became OA in June 2013. MIT Press itself hosts four OA editions, in PDF, HTML, ePub, and Mobi (Kindle). The same editions are available in DASH (Digital Access to Scholarship at Harvard), and other places around the web. The Internet Archive hosts 12 OA editions, adding ABBYY GZ, Daisy, DjVu, OCLC XISBN JSON, plain text, Single page processed JP2 zip, streaming, and Torrent.
- An inexpensive paperback edition remains available as well.
- The best edition for searching is the streaming edition from the Internet Archive. The search box is at the top of the page, and the hits show up as little flags on the bar at the bottom of the page, showing how many there are and roughly where they're located in the book. Clicking on a search result will jump you to the full text, in full context, including the page number for citation purposes.
- When you search the book for a given topic or name, don't forget to search this wiki page of updates and supplements as well.
- The best edition for cutting and pasting depends on what you need. If you don't know where to find the passage you want to want to cut/paste, then I recommend either the MIT PDF or the Internet Archive PDF. Each displays the full-text in one large file, for searching, but each leaves hard returns in your pasted text. The same is true of the IA plain text edition. If you already know where to find the passage you want to cut/paste, then I recommend the MIT HTML edition. It puts separate chapters into separate files, but will not leave hard returns in your pasted text.
- The best edition for deep linking is also the streaming edition from the Internet Archive. Built on BookReader, it supports deep links to individual pages, and I use this edition below when I link directly to pages and chapters of the book.
- Tech note: There are 12 unpaginated pages in the front of the book, and each one needs a distinct number for the purpose of deep linking. Hence, to deep link to page k of the print edition, use k+12 rather than k in the URL. For example, the deep link to page 5 is http://archive.org/stream/9780262517638OpenAccess/9780262517638_Open_Access#page/n17/mode/2up. Because 5 + 12 = 17, the URL uses /n17/ rather than /n5/. For other examples, see my deep links in the updates and supplements below.
- In addition to deep linking to parts of the book, you can deep link to parts of this book home page.
- To deep link to the updates and supplements for a given chapter of the book, for example chapter 5, the anchor is "ch5". Just add "#" and the anchor to the URL for this web page, for example, http://cyber.law.harvard.edu/hoap/Open_Access_(the_book)#ch5. You could also use the short URL, http://bit.ly/oa-book#ch5.
- To deep link to the updates and supplements for a given page of the book, for example page 5, the anchor is "p5". Just add "#" and the anchor to the URL for this web page, for example, http://cyber.law.harvard.edu/hoap/Open_Access_(the_book)#p5. You could also use the short URL, http://bit.ly/oa-book#p5. When there's more than one top-level update for a given page, the anchors are "p5.1", "p5.2", "p5.3" and so on, in the order in which I added them. If you're unsure of the anchor for a given entry, just look at the page source code.
- Request. If you cite the book and include a URL with your citation, please use the URL for this book home page (long URL or short URL). Then your readers will know about the print and OA editions, the reviews and translations, and the updates and supplements.
- Also see my case study on this book, A living open book, in Hazel Woodward, ed., Ebooks for education: Realising the vision, Ubiquity Press, November 2014, pp. 113-118.
- Also see the home page for my newer book, Knowledge Unbound: Selected Writings on Open Access, 2002–2011, MIT Press, 2016.
- Some people looking for a history of OA come to this book. But I had other purposes in mind here and didn't include much history. I'm pulling together my contributions to the history of OA in another place.
|Choice named Open Access an Outstanding Academic Title for 2013.|
- Stephen Curry, Open Access by Peter Suber, Reciprocal Space, July 5, 2012. "There has been a fairly torrid debate over open access over the last six months (even longer for aficionados). For people who look in only occasionally it must seem like a storm that swirls around the same arguments time and again....Cutting through this noisy argument is Peter Suber’s short book on the topic, which has just been published by MIT Press. In the ten brief chapters of Open Access he works his way through the definitions, the history, the economics and the implications of changes to the landscape of research publishing. The text is thorough, clear and measured....Suber does a wholly admirable job of unpicking the complexities of open access and we’ll get there sooner if more of us are able to engage properly with the matter."
- Rob Harle, Open Access by Peter Suber (MIT Press 2012), Leonardo Reviews, August 2, 2012. "This is a very important book, which, I suggest, is a must read for all scholars and researchers who publish their own work or consult the peer-reviewed published work of others ––in other words, virtually all academics...."
- Louis Kirby, Open Access: Peter Suber's new book, ZettaScience, September 6, 2012. "It comes down to this. I am a taxpayer and a physician. It makes me madder than Hell to have to pay $35.00 to read a single PDF of a journal article when my tax dollars already paid for the research....Peter Suber’s book is terrific. It is short and easily readable in a couple of sittings. That said, he is very thorough and clear at explaining what Open Access is, and why it benefits both the author, the research enterprise and society...."
- John Dupuis, Reading Diary: Open Access by Peter Suber, Confessions of a Science Librarian, September 26, 2012. "Peter Suber’s... Open Access is an important book. You should read it, you should buy (or recommend) a copy for your library. You should buy a hundred boxes and give a copy to every faculty member at your institution. And not just because it’s a blazingly wonderful book — although it mostly is — but because it’s a book that sets the stage for an intelligent, rational, fact-based discussion on the future of scholarly publishing...."
- Elliott Smith, Open Access, Issues in Science and Technology Librarianship, Fall 2012. "Suber provides clear and concise explanations....Given the recent attempts in Congress to rescind the NIH Public Access Policy, Open Access should be of interest to a broad audience. It is particularly relevant to faculty and administrators at research institutions...."
- Wm. Joseph Thomas, Review of Peter Suber, Open Access, Against the Grain, November 2012, p. 40. "Suber makes the point eloquently that all key players involved in vetting research — authors, editors, and peer reviewers — can consent to OA without losing revenue. Not only that, Suber makes the case that distributing research freely is a public gift with both direct and indirect benefits to all....If the readers of Suber's book will take action on providing access to knowledge as a 'public good,' we can indeed complete the 'peaceful revolution' that Suber envisions."
- Aaron Tay, 5 things I learnt about Open Access after reading Crawford's & Suber's books, Musings about librarianship, January 19, 2013. "Before [reading Suber's book], I had heard about "mandates" that require all researchers at a certain institution to support open access by depositing their work in their institutional repository. But Suber's book in chapter 4, shows how simplistic this thinking is and includes material that is almost 100% new to me....There's also a great discussion on why the word "mandate" might not be the best word, and a very good section "digression on historical timing of Open Access policies" on when and why it might be the right time to try to adopt different mandate types....Suber's book is longer (but still short) and more technical....I loved it....I do wish he could have written a much longer book, as I got the sense that behind every sentence he wrote, lurks a bigger story...."
- T.M. Owen, Open Access by Peter Suber, Choice, February 2013, vol. 50, No. 06, p. 216. "Drawing extensively on his previous online writings, world-renowned open access (OA) expert Suber...presents a well-written, concise explanation of OA. The book appeals to those with all levels of OA knowledge, from novice to expert, but it is especially beneficial for those unfamiliar with the subject....In ten well-organized chapters, the author defines OA, examines the motivation behind OA, presents options for institutional and funders' policies, confronts copyright issues, explains the economics of OA, and predicts what the future might hold. The extensive notes and references that accompany each chapter enhance the value of this important resource. Open Access should be required reading for everyone involved in the publishing cycle — from authors to publishers, including librarians and general readers. Everyone who reads this volume will gain a better understanding and appreciation of OA....Summing Up: Essential...."
- Giridhar Madras, Open Access by Peter Suber, Current Science, February 10, 2013. "This book by Peter Suber builds on his excellent work and articles on open access (OA)....This book is clear in its recommendation....On 16 August 2012, Georgia State University distributed copies of Suber’s book to new faculty and administrators on campus....It is high time that Indian institutions follow the [George State] example."
- Padmanabhan Balaram, Open Access: Tearing Down Barriers, Current Science, February 25, 2013. "Open Access by Peter Suber...is an excellent and easily readable primer on the movement to make the results of scholarly work freely available. The author's preface is engaging, urging readers to plunge on: 'I want busy people to read this book. OA benefits literally everyone, for the same reason that research benefits literally everyone.' Suber is clear 'that the largest obstacle to OA is misunderstanding....' His remedy for misunderstanding ‘is a clear statement of the basics for busy people’. I believe the book will serve this purpose admirably....This is a book that must be read by those busy scientists who publish a lot, read a lot and have had little time to grasp the nuances of the open access movement. It must also be read (and read carefully) by strident advocates, who have little time to allay the fears of those unfamiliar with the issue."
- Brenda Chawner, Open Access, Online Information Review, Vol. 37, No. 1 (2013) pp. 150 - 151. "Suber has been writing about OA concepts and developments since 2001, making him one of the movement's most important champions. Now, in Open Access Suber provides a succinct, readable and well-reasoned discussion of OA concepts and practices....[T]his book is an excellent guide for anyone interested in learning more about open access publishing."
- Kevin Michael Clair, Open Access by Peter Suber, Journal of Academic Librarianship, vol. 39, no. 1, January 2013. "In his latest book, Suber lays out in succinct and engaging fashion the primary reasons why the major players in the scholarly communications space should consider open access in their publishing, peer-reviewing, and library acquisitions work....For libraries just making inroads into the open access world, Open Access is an essential introduction to the topic. For academic librarians who have been working in the scholarly communications space and are familiar with its content, the value of Open Access lies in the concise way in which Suber outlines all of the reasons why the OA movement exists, and how researchers, librarians, and their reading audience can continue to work in order to advance its cause. Open Access is an essential addition to the libraries of anyone interested in the future of scholarly publishing in all of its forms."
- Elizabeth Siler Open Access by Peter Suber, Library Resources & Technical Services, vol. 57, no. 2, 2013. "In Open Access, Peter Suber explains the ins and outs of the OA movement, in a quick and efficient way, to inform the busy researcher....Open Access provides a brief but complete overview of OA publishing...."
- Gary F. Daught, Review: Peter Suber’s Open Access, Omega Alpha | Open Access, June 17, 2013. "This book is a high-quality, thoughtful, and well-written distillation of Suber’s decade-long full-time immersion in the developing open access environment....Suber accomplishes his purpose admirably. In addressing these topics, Suber writes succinctly and with clarity, applying the logic of a philosopher (which he is), the sharpness of a debater, and the cadence of a musician (speaking to his writing style). He anticipates the many sides and questions of his readers, even honest critiques, and he answers them with directness and without polemic. He clearly aims to persuade, but he also wants to bring his readers along with with him."
- Colin Steele, Open access by Peter Suber, Australian Library Journal, September 29, 2013. "While many libraries and librarians will buy Suber’s book, it really needs to become essential reading for administrators and academics, since the system will not quickly change without their understanding of and involvement in the issues. Suber’s pithy comments may help, such as, ‘The deeper problem is that we donate time, labor, and public money to create new knowledge and then hand control over the results to businesses that believe, correctly or incorrectly, that their revenue and survival depend on limiting access to that knowledge’....Suber’s book is an excellent primer....In [the] future, the role of the library will include the facilitation of scholarly publishing to enable the widest dissemination of an institution’s intellectual output. To assist that process, Suber’s book is an essential OA vade mecum."
- Benjamin Caraco, Peter Suber, Open Access, Lectures, Les comptes rendus, October 1, 2013. Also here. "[Suber's] écrits, activités et engagements font de lui l’un des spécialistes les plus respectés et écoutés sur la question du libre accès. Dans son dernier livre, Open Access,...il propose une introduction raisonnée au libre accès dans un langage clair, alliant la pédagogie au pragmatisme." In Google's English: "[Suber's] writings, activities and commitments made him one of the most respected and listened to on the issue of open access experts. In his latest book, Open Access,...[he] offers a reasoned introduction to free access in clear language, combining pedagogy [with] pragmatism."
- Brad Reid, Peter Suber, Open Access, Computing Reviews, October 29, 2013. "Anyone in the computing, publishing, archiving, and library worlds will find [this book] informative, interesting, and nontechnical....This is a compact presentation of the interesting and important topic of OA."
- David R. Stewart, Peter Suber, Open Access, Theological Librarianship, 7, 1 (January 2014) pp. 72-74. "It is very easy to imagine a book on this urgent topic that is too complex, too long, too combative, and deathly boring. Happily, Suber’s Open Access is none of these things. He has an almost perfect instinct for what his readers are eager to know, and he frames his content in useful examples and in the context of the real-world challenges common to the academy. Likewise, he clearly has a great deal of respect for the issues libraries and librarians must contend with in these times of transition. Open Access is highly recommended for anyone who wants to understand better how academic publishing is changing, whether from a library acquisitions or a publishing perspective."
- Paul Uhlir, "Peter Suber, Open Access" (review not online), Issues in Science and Technology, Spring 2014, pp. 92-94. "Peter Suber’s book Open Access provides an easy-to-read compendium of answers to many questions and blows up some of the canards that have been flying around the ether. Suber is one of the gurus of the open access (OA) movement....In summary, Suber dispels the arguments against open publishing of publicly funded research results and makes a cogent case for the new models."
- Marian De Saxe, "Peter Suber, Open Access" (review not online), Media International Australia, February 2014. "Peter Suber...is...the ideal person to provide an insider's expert overview and summary of this form of publishing while mounting a persuasive argument in favour of the extensive advantages to be gained from adopting formal open access policies....The strength of this book lies in the clarity with which Suber highlights an extremely complex publishing and access environment....[T]his book provides a thorough grounding in the youthful history and practical state-of-play of open access publishing."
- Hubertus Kohle, Peter Suber, Open Access, Kunstform, May 2014. "Zunächst gilt es, die knappe Einführung in ein Gebiet anzuzeigen, das zu den wichtigsten, umstrittensten und gleichzeitig scheinbar nebensächlichsten des aktuellen Wissenschaftsbetriebes gehört. Der Autor, Peter Suber, gilt als einer der besten Kenner des durchaus komplexen Gegenstandes. Er liefert eine konzise, leicht in einem knappen halben Tag zu lesende Darstellung, die ganz auf den Vergleich Online- gegen Druck-Publikation abstellt."
- Gordana Ljubanović, Peter Suber, Open Access, National Library of Serbia Herald, n.d. but circa December 2014. [The review is long and positive. Unfortunately I can't pick a good excerpt to post here because the review is in Serbian, which I don't read, and because Google's English translation is weak.]
- Jean Bernatchez, Peter Suber, Qu’est-ce que l’accès ouvert? Lectures, Les comptes rendus, March 15, 2017. Bref, le livre est un incontournable pour se familiariser avec l’accès ouvert. Il est heureux qu’il soit désormais disponible en français....Peter Suber propose une synthèse du phénomène accessible (sur tous les plans) et qui rend justice aux acteurs concernés, à leurs arguments favorables ou défavorables. Il est certes un militant de la cause, mais il ne verse pas dans l’exagération. Il ne souhaite pas la disparition du modèle traditionnel de l’édition scientifique, mais il insiste néanmoins sur la promotion du bien commun, avant tout, et sur sa traduction dans le monde de l’édition scientifique par l’accès ouvert.
- Pablo Markin, The Continued Relevance of Peter Suber’s (2012) Book on Open Access, Open Science, June 18, 2017. Few formats fit better Marshall MacLuhan’s dictum that “the medium is the message” than Open Access does. Peter Suber’s book Open Access published in 2012 by the MIT Press intends to be an authoritative source of reference on the notion of open access, its historical roots, its variegated models, policies proffered in its support, its possible scope, its copyright implications, its economic foundations and consequent limitations....As this book has been translated into multiple other languages, such as Chinese Polish and French, it has become a standard source for arguments in favor and against Open Access....Despite the elapsed time from the date of its publication, the digital supplement for this book provides further materials in respect to the effect Open Access is likely to have....[I]n the intervening years this publication has hardly lost any of its relevance as a sustained and up-to-date compendium of thoroughly researched scholarship on Open Access and reasons for its emergence.
Unless noted otherwise, all these translations are OA or have OA editions.
- Arabic, QScience division of the Qatar Foundation, October 2015. Thanks to Tahseen Al-Khateeb for doing the translation, and to Christopher Leonard, Alwaleed Alkhaja, Fakhri Saleh, Jameela Jassim for their editorial help. There is both a print and OA edition.
- Chinese, China Ocean Press, January 2015. Thanks to Li Wu for doing the translation. Unfortunately China Ocean Press does not plan to issue an OA edition.
- French, OpenEdition Press, October 2016. Thanks to Marie Lebert for doing the translation, and to Helen Tomlinson and Solenne Louis for revising it. There is both a print and OA edition.
- Polish, University of Warsaw press, October 13, 2014. Thanks to the Interdyscyplinarne Centrum Modelowania Matematycznego i Komputerowego Uniwersytetu Warszawskiego (Interdisciplinary Center for Mathematical and Computational Modelling at the University of Warsaw), the Platforma Otwartej Nauki (Open Science Platform), Wydawnictwa Uniwersytetu Warszawskiego (University of Warsaw Press), and the team of translators: Roman Bogacewicz, Maciej Chojnowski, Wojciech Fenrich, Joanna Kielan, Andrzej Leśniak, Krzysztof Siewicz, Michał Starczewski, and Jakub Szprot.
- Spanish, Universidad Autónoma del Estado de México, August 17, 2015. Thanks to Remedios Melero for doing the translation, and to Indrajit Banerjee, Dominique Babini, and Eduardo Aguado for their lengthy new introduction. There is both a print and OA edition.
- Forthcoming. Translations are under way into Czech, German, Greek, Japanese, Romanian, and Russian. I'll link to them here as they become available. I welcome other translations.
About the updates and supplements
- I add updates and supplements in real time, as I find relevant new studies and evidence. Consider these supplements to be continuously updated "public footnotes" for the assertions they annotate. For more on this concept, see my 2012 article, The Idea of an Open-Access Evidence Rack (perma.cc link).
- To find corrections, as opposed to other kinds of updates, search this page for the word "correction". All the hits except for this entry will be corrections.
- I use perma.cc links and Wayback Machine (WM) links to prevent link rot.
- In October 2019 I started doing this for the sources in every new update or supplement. As I find time, I add these links retroactively to earlier entries.
- When the original link is dead, and I can find a copy in the WM, then I use a WM link. I don't double-down by preserving WM links with perma.cc links. When the original link is still alive, I protect it with a perma.cc link and include both the original and the perma.cc link.
- If you notice any dead links, please let me know. I'll do my best to find live links, and keep them alive through perma.cc or WM.
- After 10 years of adding updates and supplements, I decided to slow down — without stopping (June 2022).
Text, updates, and supplements
- Some of these notes didn't fit into the book. The book is deliberately short and I was already over my wordcount. Others were too late to put in the book. They cite publications or developments that hadn't occurred by the time my text was final in the spring of 2011.
- The first print edition used an "all rights reserved" statement and a CC-BY license icon, which caused confusion. The digital editions clarified the book's copyright status, and the clarification appeared in future print editions. Basically, the book incorporates some material that I previously published in the SPARC Open Access Newsletter under a CC-BY license and a copyright owned by SPARC. That material remains CC-BY. The all-rights-reserved copyright on the first print edition applied only to new parts of the book, and even those parts shifted to a CC-BY-NC license on June 17, 2013, one year after the book was published.
- In April 2019, MIT Press shifted the CC-BY-NC parts of the book to CC-BY. The whole book has been CC-BY ever since.
- Note that all the updates and supplements are CC-BY, and have been from the start.
|Read the OA text:|
Updates and supplements for the Preface:
- At p. ix, I say, "OA benefits nonresearchers by accelerating research and all the goods that depend on research, such as new medicines, useful technologies, solved problems, informed decisions, improved policies, and beautiful understanding." Add these notes.
- On OA for improved policies:
- See Michael Gough and Steven Milloy, The Case for Public Access to Federally Funded Research Data, Cato Institute, February 2, 2000 (perma.cc link): "The government and its scientists appear to be as prone to mistakes as anyone else. Requiring the government 'to show its work' [by opening open access to data arising from publicly-funded research] opens up the regulatory process. Moreover, it ensures that federal regulations are based on sound science and reduces doubts about the need for federal intervention. Whether one supports or opposes regulatory action, we should all acknowledge that independent review of scientific data and methodology can serve only to strengthen the scientific foundations of public policy."
- See Brian Head and co-authors, Are policy-makers interested in social research? Exploring the sources and uses of valued information among public servants in Australia, Policy and Society, June 2014 (perma.cc link). Australian policy-makers agreed that academic research was useful for policy-making. For example, 39% agreed that "Academic research alters or transforms how policy makers think about issues and choices" and 42% agreed that "Academic research is used to shape and inform the design and implementation of policies and programs." Interestingly, surveyed academics thought these propositions were true more often than policy-makers themselves. Most relevant here, however, is the result cited by the authors in a blog post summarizing the study (June 13, 2014) (perma.cc link): "The main reasons provided by policy-makers for the [relatively] low uptake of academic research were the perception that academic research is not available when needed, is difficult to access, or is not being translated in a user-friendly form for policy-makers." It's hard to avoid the conclusion that academic research would be even more useful for policy-making if it were OA.
- More on OA for improved policies: See Samantha Vilkins and Will Grant, Types of evidence cited in Australian Government publications, October 10, 2017 (perma.cc link): "The study also found a possible increased chance for academic research to be cited [in policy documents] if it was open access."
- More on OA for improved policies: See Fernando Hoces de la Guardia, Sean Grant, and Edward Miguel, A Framework for Open Policy Analysis, a preprint from he Berkeley Initiative for Transparency in the Social Sciences (BITSS), April 5, 2018 (perma.cc link): "In this paper we have argued that policy analysis can address the threat of its own credibility crisis by adopting solutions from the open science movement."
- More on OA for improved policies: See Marialuisa Taddia, Good Citations, The Law Society Gazette, April 16, 2018 (perma.cc link). Law professors have always influenced law and policy, and today open access amplifies their influence. "More academic journals are making their content freely available online through ‘open access’, making the dissemination of scholarly articles quicker and wider. [Jon Yorke, law professor at Birmingham City University] points to an academic paper he co-authored in 2013 on the EU and the abolition of the death penalty as ‘the most downloaded article in the Pace International Law Review’, with over 2,000 downloads by governments, institutions and non-governmental organisations. ‘With open access of journals globally, policy-makers can have at their fingertips instant access to the quality of material which they are required to [use to] form intricate arguments. It definitely helps them and they do listen to legal academics in that way,’ Yorke adds...."
- More on OA for improved policies: See David Rose and Chris Tyler, Seven insights for communicating research to busy policymakers, LSE Blog, April 7, 2020 (perma.cc link): "MPs and Peers tended not to search for evidence in academic papers, but their staff and House Library staff do. Staff talked about their frustration at finding paywalls that restricted them from accessing information. Open access is crucial." Or as I paraphrased this conclusion in a tweet: "Legislators are more likely to draft evidence-based policies if they and their staffers have #openaccess to the evidence."
- More on OA for improved policies: See Michael Taylor, An altmetric attention advantage for open access books in the humanities and social sciences, Scientometrics, October 10, 2020 (perma.cc link): "Both OA books and chapters have...higher rates of social impact in policy documents."
- Stefan Reichmann et al., ON-MERRIT D5.1 Scoping Report: Open Science Outputs in Policy-Making and Public Participation, May 31, 2021. Cutting against some of the studies above, the authors conclude that "policymakers prefer receiving information through personal networks rather than academic publications. The reviewed literature suggests that the availability of information in the form of academic publications and other research outputs is of secondary concern." But they also conclude that "improved infrastructure for sharing scientific outputs could have a positive impact on the use of evidence in policy making."
- On OA for improved policies:
Chapter 1: What Is Open Access?
|Read the OA text:|
Updates and supplements for Chapter 1:
- For updates to Section 1 in general, including real-time updates, see the following tag libraries from the Open Access Tracking Project:
- At p. 4, I offer my definition of OA: "Open access (OA) literature is digital, online, free of charge, and free of most copyright and licensing restrictions." Add this note.
- I can't remember when I first offered this definition. But it was at least by June 21, 2004, when I put it in my Open Access Overview. In some later publications I said "needless" instead of "most".
- At p. 5, I say, "Copyright can...be a significant access barrier." Add this note.
- See Lea Shaver, Copyright and Inequality, preprint, December 22, 2014. "The majority of the world’s people experience copyright law not as a boon to consumer choice, but as a barrier to acquiring knowledge and taking part in cultural life."
- At p. 5, I say, "Even...authors [who don't sell their work and want to share it as widely as possible]...tend to transfer their copyrights to intermediaries —publishers— who want to sell their work. As a result, users may be hampered in their research by barriers erected to serve intermediaries rather than authors." Add this note.
- See my July 2011 interview with Richard Poynder: "OA doesn’t merely share knowledge. It accelerates research by helping authors and readers find one another. It’s compatible with intermediaries but not with intermediaries who erect access barriers to keep authors and readers apart."
- At p. 6, I introduce the term "toll access (TA)" for "work that is not open access, or that is available only for a price." Add this note:
- That was the most common term for non-OA work in 2012. But if I were writing the book today (say, 2018 or later), I'd use "paywalled" instead. It's more common now, and (slightly) more self-explanatory. This update also applies to p. 176, where "toll access" appears in the glossary.
- At p. 7, I introduce the Budapest Open Access Initiative and its definition of OA. Add this note.
- See the ten-year anniversary statement from the BOAI, which reaffirmed the original definition of OA and made recommendations for the next ten years, Ten years on from the Budapest Open Access Initiative: setting the default to open, September 12, 2012.
- At p. 7, I quote from the Budapest Open Access Initiative definition of OA: "...without financial, legal, or technical barriers other than those inseparatable from gaining access to the internet itself." Add this note.
- At pp. 8-9, I say, "[T]he major obstacles are not technical, legal, or economic, but cultural." Add this note.
- For more on this claim, see the updates to p. 167 below.
- At p. 10, I refer to the first two scholarly journals, both launched in 1665. Add this note.
- How quickly did journals multiply after 1665? See Derek de Solla Price, Science Since Babylon, enlarged edition, Yale University Press, 1975, all of Chapter 8 ("Diseases of Science"), especially pp. 163-164: The first journals were "followed rapidly by some three or four similar journals published by other national academies in Europe. Thereafter, as the need increased, so did the number of journals, reaching a total of about one hundred by the beginning of the nineteenth century, one thousand by the middle, and some ten thousand by 1900. According to the World List of Scientific Periodicals, a tome larger than any family Bible, we are now well on the way to the next milestone of a hundred thousand such journals." Also see p. 169: "The most remarkable conclusion obtained from the data just considered is that the number of journals has grown exponentially rather than linearly. Instead of there being just so many new periodicals per year, the number has doubled every so many years. The constant involved is actually about fifteen years for a doubling, corresponding to a power of ten in fifty years and a factor of one thousand in a century and a half. In the three hundred years which separate us from the mid-seventeenth century, this represents a factor of one million."
- At p. 12, I say that the custom for scholars to write articles for impact rather than money "is a payment structure we need for good research itself, not just for good access to that research." Add these notes.
- See David William Hedding, Payouts push professors towards predatory journals, Nature News, January 15, 2019. "[S]ubsidies corrode the quality of scholarship in South Africa. China went through the same cycle — paying researchers per paper and seeing poor-quality publications soar. Its leading academies and universities are now rowing back from the practice."
- See Gayathri Vaidyanathanm, Indian payment-for-papers proposal rattles scientists, Nature News, February 15, 2019. "Indian scientists are criticizing a government proposal to pay graduate students who publish in select journals. They fear that it could degrade the quality of research and lead to an increase in scientific misconduct, by incentivizing publishing rather than good science....A pay-to-publish scheme will exacerbate [the] problems [of retracted articles], says [Mukund] Thattai. Incentives for publishing could push some scientists to engage in fraud and plagiarism, says he says. 'This is an absolute incentive to game the system.' "
- At p. 13, I refer to researcher productivity. If I were writing the book again, I'd add a section (here or hereabouts) on how OA increases researcher productivity.
- See Ronald Larsen and Howard Wactlar, Lost in Information, National Science Foundation, June 17, 2003. "Substantial improvements in scholarly productivity are already apparent [from the rises of digital libraries]. Digital resources have demonstrated the potential to advance scholarly productivity, easily doubling research output in many fields within the next decade....This report details the nature of the federal investment required to sustain the pace of progress....[T]he next phase of digital library research should focus on...[i]mproving availability, accessibility and, thereby, productivity."
- Stevan Harnad, On Maximizing Journal Article Access, Usage and Impact, Haworth Press, April 21, 2005. "Researchers are employed and salaried, and their research is funded, so as to maximize the usage and impact of their research output, thereby maximizing the progress and productivity of research itself....And of course the progress and productivity of researchers and research itself are enhanced [by open-access self-archiving]."
- Stevan Harnad, Promoting open access to research, The Hindu, November 1, 2006. "And now we can see both why researchers give away their articles and why it is so important that all their potential users should be able to access and use them. Because all access-barriers are barriers to research progress and its benefits (as well as to the advancement of researchers' careers and productivity)....There is no need, however, for developing countries to wait for the developed countries to mandate self-archiving. Developing countries have even more to gain...because currently both their access and their impact is disproportionately low, relative to their actual and potential research productivity."
- See Ian Rowlands and Rene Olivieri, Overcoming the barriers to research productivity: A case study in immunology and microbiology, Publishing Research Consortium, 2006, p. 28: "By a very large majority (90%) and by general agreement (no differences are evident between the four sub-populations), researchers agree that desktop access to journal full text has enabled them to become more effective researchers (Fig 15)." Note that "this report was commissioned by the publishing industry" (p. 7) and is generally critical of open access.
- See Beverly Brown, Cynthia Found, and Merle McConnell, Federal Science eLibrary Pilot: Seamless, equitable desktop access for Canadian government researchers, The Electronic Library, 2007. "[R]esearchers...provided with seamless, equitable access to an expanded core of electronic journals in science, technology and medicine (STM)...reported significantly reduced time finding and verifying information. Time saved was redirected into critical activities such as research, laboratory activities, manuscript preparation, peer review activities and professional reading. Participants found that increased desktop access had a very positive impact on their ability to do their work."
- Richard K. Johnson and Judy Luther, The E-only Tipping Point for Journals: What’s Ahead in the Print-to-Electronic Transition Zone, Association of Research Libraries, December 5, 2007. Quoting an unnamed librarian from their interviews: "For many if not most campus users of journals, electronic access is a productivity enhancer."
- Peter Binfield, New Academic Editor Interview - Niyaz Ahmed, Public Library of Science blog, November 18, 2008. "Developing countries are in great need of Open Access. The fruits of the scientific and technological revolution are not reaching them because they have to pay to receive the content. In an Indian case scenario, while the library budgets are dwindling, internet access has become affordable for masses, thanks to our technology driven economy. And that is where OA comes to enhance research productivity as well as the pace of discovery."
- See Alessandro Iaria, Carlo Schwarz, and Fabian Waldinger, Frontier Knowledge and Scientific Production: Evidence from the Collapse of International Science, Quarterly Journal of Economics, July 1, 2017 (perma.cc link). Here's my paraphrase of their fascinating argument: WWI reduced the flow of new scientific knowledge into Germany, Austria-Hungary, Ottoman Empire, and Bulgaria. This was not just from violent disruption, which also affected Allied countries, but also from a deliberate scientific boycott of the Central Powers by the Allies. Compared to pre-War years, researchers in the Central Powers had less access to research from other countries, and roughly unchanged access to research from their own countries. This resulted in a decline in their productivity, as reflected in several measures including a drop in international prizes, a drop in patent applications, and a drop in the similarity of journal-article titles (measured by algorithm), suggesting a drop in cooperation. This is a new kind of evidence that science is international. It's also indirect support for one of the common arguments for OA, otherwise difficult to document empirically, namely, that enhancing access to research enhances researcher productivity.
- At p. 15, I say that "OA benefits authors as well as readers." Add these notes.
- See the supplements below (also for p. 15) on the OA citation advantage.
- See Sarah Werning: "The second best part of science is knowing, just for a little while, something nobody else knows. The best part is sharing it with someone." Quoted by Mike Taylor in December 2012 (perma.cc link).
- See Richard Sever, co-founder of bioRxiv and medRxiv, quoted in SPARC's celebration of the 30th anniversary of arXiv (perma.cc link): "Altruism is great, especially when there's something in it for you as well. And authors realize that if they put their work out there [make it OA], it's really good for the community as a whole, it's also really good for them."
- At p. 15, I refer to "the well-documented phenomenon that OA articles are cited more often than non-OA articles...and that journals converting to OA see a rise in their submissions and citation impact." See the documentation in note 6 at pp. 178-179. Add these notes.
- For a comprehensive annotated bibliography of studies up to 2013, including studies that do and do not support the OA citation advantage, see Steve Hitchcock, The effect of open access and downloads ('hits') on citation impact: a bibliography of studies, OpCit Project (perma.cc link).
- SPARC Europe continued Hitchcock's bibliography in its Open Access Citation Advantage Service (perma.cc link), but stopped updating it in 2016.
- The closest thing to the Hitchcock and SPARC lists, and still updating today, is the Open Access Citation Advantage collection from ScienceOpen, which launched in February 2018.
- See Stefan Busch's summary of the experience of BioMed Central, March 26 2011: "Typically...2 or 3 years after a journal converts from TA to OA, i.e. when the impact factor...is based on two years' worth of OA, the IF tends to go up significantly."
- For evidence that the OA advantage also applies to open data, or to articles whose underlying data is open, see Heather Piwowar and Todd Vision, Data reuse and the open data citation advantage, PeerJ, October 1, 2013 (perma.cc link): "After accounting for other factors affecting citation rate, we find a robust citation benefit from open data, although a smaller one than previously reported. We conclude there is a direct effect of third-party data reuse that persists for years beyond the time when researchers have published most of the papers reusing their own data."
- Also see Giovanni Colavizza et al., The citation advantage of linking publications to research data, arXiv, October 3, 2019 (perma.cc link): "We find that, following mandated publisher policies, data availability statements have become common by now, yet statements containing a link to a repository are still just a fraction of the total. We also find that articles with these statements, in particular, can have up to 25.36% higher citation impact on average." This article was later published in PLOS ONE, April 22, 2020 (perma.cc link).
- Also see Garret Christensen et al., A study of the impact of data sharing on article citations using journal policies as a natural experiment, PLOS ONE, December 18, 2019 (perma.cc link): "The two main results, taken together, indicate that it is not sufficient for scientific journals merely to announce a data sharing requirement....Without diligent enforcement, a toothless journal data policy appears to produce the same result as no policy at all; few authors post their data. But even if de jure journal policy does not guarantee data sharing, our results indicate that public data sharing can eventually yield private benefits for scholars, in the form of enhanced citations, which provide meaningful de facto incentives to share scientific data."
- Also see Giovanni Colavizza et al., The citation advantage of linking publications to research data, PLOS ONE, April 22, 2020 (perma.cc link): "We [found] an association between articles that include statements that link to data in a repository and up to 25.36% (± 1.07%) higher citation impact on average, using a citation prediction model."
- Also see Liwei Zhang and Liang Ma, Does open data boost journal impact: evidence from Chinese economics, Scientometrics, February 14, 2021 (perma.cc link): "Our results show that open data has significantly increased the citations of journal articles....Our findings suggest that journals can leverage [journal-level policies requiring open data] to develop reputation and amplify academic impacts."
- For evidence that the OA advantage also applies to OA books, see the November 2017 white paper from Springer Nature, The OA Effect: How Does Open Access Affect the Usage of Scholarly Books? "We found that Springer Nature OA books perform better than non-OA books published by Springer Nature in all three categories that we assessed: Downloads...Citations...[and] Online mentions."
- The OA citation advantage for books also applies when non-OA but more affordable reprints emerge, even when the reprints infringe copyright. See Barbara Biasi and Petra Moser, Effects of Copyrights on Science, SSRN, December 26, 2018 (perma.cc link): "The Book Republication Program (BRP) allowed US publishers to violate German-owned copyrights....[W]e find that this change led to a substantial increase in citations to affected books. Intensity regressions show that this increase was driven by reductions in the price of books. A geographic analysis of library holdings and citations suggests that lower prices for BRP books allowed a new group of researchers at less affluent institutions to use these books in their own research."
- Also see Michael Taylor, An altmetric attention advantage for open access books in the humanities and social sciences, Scientometrics, October 10, 2020 (perma.cc link): "Both OA books and chapters have significantly higher use on social networks, higher coverage in the mass media and blogs, and evidence of higher rates of social impact in policy documents. OA chapters have higher rates of coverage on Wikipedia than their non-OA equivalents, and are more likely to be shared on Mendeley."
- For evidence that the OA advantage also applies to articles whose preprints were OA, see Stylianos Serghiou and John Ioannidis, Altmetric Scores, Citations, and Publication of Studies Posted as Preprints, Journal of the American Medical Association, January 23, 2018 (perma.cc link): "The sample of 776 published articles with preprints was matched to 3647 published articles without preprints. Published articles with preprints had significantly higher Altmetric scores than published articles without preprints (median, 9.5 [IQR, 3.1 to 35.3] vs 3.5 [IQR, 0.8 to 12.2], respectively; between-group difference, 4 [IQR, 0 to 15]; P < .001) and received more citations (median, 4 [IQR, 1 to 10] vs 3 [IQR, 1 to 7]; between-group difference, 1 [IQR, −1 to 5]; P < .001)."
- Also see Darwin Y. Fu and Jacob J. Hughey, Meta-Research: Releasing a preprint is associated with more attention and citations for the peer-reviewed article, eLife, December 6, 2019 (perma.cc link): "[W]e found that articles with a preprint had, on average, a 49% higher Altmetric Attention Score and 36% more citations than articles without a preprint. These associations were independent of several other article- and author-level variables (such as scientific subfield and number of authors), and were unrelated to journal-level variables such as access model and Impact Factor."
- Also see Nicholas Fraser et al., The relationship between bioRxiv preprints, citations and altmetrics, Quantitative Science Studies, June 25, 2020: "bioRxiv-deposited journal articles had sizably higher citation and altmetric counts compared to nondeposited articles."
- Also see Boya Xie et al., Is preprint the future of science? A thirty year journey of online preprint services, arXiv, February 20, 2021 (perma.cc link): "[We find] that papers with preprints have more citations in any year regardless whether they have a published version. On average of all years, a journal or conference paper with a preprint version (P-JC) has median citation of 14.8, while a non-preprint counterpart (JC-only) receives 2.6 citations, which results in 12.2 citation difference (five times more). All preprints (P-all), regardless whether they have been published in journal/conference, have 0.7 more citations than papers without a preprint version (JC-only)."
- For evidence that the OA advantage shows up in altmetrics, not just in citation counts, see Daniel Torres-Salinas et al., Open Access and Altmetrics in the pandemic age: Forescast analysis on COVID-19 literature, bioRxiv, April 26, 2020 (perma.cc link): "OA publications tend to receive the largest share of social media attention as measured by the Altmetric Attention Score." Also see the 2018 Serghiou and Ionnadis study cited above.
- Also see Jessica G.Y. Luc et al., Does Tweeting Improve Citations? Annals of Thoracic Surgery, June 3, 2020 (perma.cc link): "One-year follow-up of this...prospective randomized trial importantly demonstrates that tweeting results in significantly more article citations over time, highlighting the durable scholarly impact of social media activity."
- Also see Tahereh Dehdarirad, Could early tweet counts predict later citation counts? A gender study in Life Sciences and Biomedicine (2014–2016), PLoS ONE, November 2, 2020 (perma.cc link). An article's tweet count weakly predicts or boosts its later citation count, and the correlation is stronger for women authors than men authors.
- See Éric Archambault et al., Research Impact of Paywalled versus Open Access Papers, n.d. but captured by the Wayback Machine on August 7, 2016: "Publishing in paywalled journals without green archiving is never an effective impact maximization strategy....In total, and for all these fields, publishing in paywalled journals with no additional green archiving always yields below average citedness....Publishing in paywalled journals is the least impactful strategy overall, and the least impactful in 16 out of 22 fields....On average, open access papers produce a 50% higher research impact than strictly paywalled papers....In all these fields, fostering open access (without distinguishing between gold and green) is always a better research impact maximization strategy than relying on strictly paywalled papers....Having a green copy of a paper is the most impactful research communication strategy overall and the best strategy in 19 fields out of 22....Green is nearly always more effective than relying strictly on gold (20 out of 22 fields)....Gold is the best strategy in biology and biomedical research and very close to green in clinical medicine (likely a reflection of the NIH and Wellcome Trust OA mandates)....Gold has the least impact in six fields."
- See Heather Piwowar et al., The state of OA: a large-scale analysis of the prevalence and impact of Open Access articles, PeerJ, February 13, 2018 (perma.cc link): "Comparing the average relative citation impact of different access categories, the OACA [Open Access Citation Advantage] is corroborated: Papers hidden behind a paywall were cited 10% below world average (ARC [Average Relative Citation] = 0.90), while those that are freely available obtain, on average, 18% more citations than what is expected (ARC = 1.18). However, citation impact differs between the different manners in which papers are made available for free: those that are only available as Green OA (ARC = 1.33) and Hybrid OA papers (ARC = 1.31) are cited the most with an impact of more than 30% above expectations, those available as Bronze are cited 22% above world average, while papers published as Gold OA obtain an ARC of 0.83. This constitutes an average relative citation impact of 17% below world average and 9% below that of articles hidden behind a paywall. Figure 5 below describes these findings."
- See Mirjam Curno and Stephanie Oeben, Scientific Excellence at Scale: Open Access journals have a clear citation advantage over subscription journals, Frontiers, July 11, 2018 (perma.cc link): "In general and across the last three years, Open Access journals receive on average 7% more citations than subscription journals (Figure 3). Interestingly, Open Access journals published by traditional subscription publishers are generally achieving more impact within the same publisher."
- See Dan Pollock and Ann Michael, Evaluating Quality in Open Access Journals, DeltaThink, August 2018 (perma.cc link): "While the proportion of fully OA journals is growing over time, the proportion of higher-performing fully OA journals [measured by journal impact factor] is growing faster than the average performers....The data show that an increasing number of fully OA publications are attaining higher impact factors at faster rates than their subscription and hybrid counterparts....There is nothing preventing an OA journal from being 'high quality', and based on this data, a fully OA journal’s Impact Factor now appears more likely to be above average for its field." Also see the later article by the same authors, Open access mythbusting: Testing two prevailing assumptions about the effects of open access adoption, Learned Publishing, January 24, 2019. "An increasing number of fully OA publications are attaining higher Journal Impact Factors at faster rates than their subscription and hybrid counterparts."
- See Yang Li et al., Will open access increase journal CiteScores? An empirical investigation over multiple disciplines, PLoS ONE, August 30, 2018 (perma.cc link): "This paper empirically studies the effect of Open Access on journal CiteScores. We have found that the general effect is positive but not uniform across different types of journals. In particular, we investigate two types of heterogeneous treatment effect: (1) the differential treatment effect among journals grouped by academic field, publisher, and tier; and (2) differential treatment effects of Open Access as a function of propensity to be treated. The results are robust to a number of sensitivity checks and falsification tests. Our findings shed new light on Open Access effect on journals and can help stakeholders of journals in the decision of adopting the Open Access policy." Also see the summary in the LSE Impact Blog on October 30, 2018 (perma.cc link), emphasizing the effects of a journal flip or conversion to OA.
- See K.C. Kazikdas, M. Tanik, and A. Ural, Changing trends in otorhinolaryngology publishing, ACTA Otorhinolaryngologica Italica, March 25, 2019 (perma.cc link): "The aim of this study is to compare the changes in impact factors and citation numbers of Open Access (OA) vs subscription-based (SB) journals between 1999 and 2016....There was a statistical difference as the proportion of OA Journals were not equal to the proportion of SB Journals throughout the years 1999 and 2016, and it showed the tendency to increase greater compared to SB Journals (p < 0.01). Although the overall level of impact factors of SB journals was generally high, by comparing two regression models, it was obvious that the level of increase of the impact factors of OA journals were significantly higher (p < 0.01)."
- See Cui Huang et al., The effect of “open access” on journal impact factors: A causal analysis of medical journals, Physica A: Statistical Mechanics and its Applications, November 1, 2019 (perma.cc link): "OA enhances JIFs." As I put it in a tweet about this article, "OA journals can play the JIF game and win, even if it's better not to play at all."
- See Nuria Bautista-Puig et al., Do journals flipping to gold open access show an OA citation or publication advantage?, Scientometrics, June 13, 2020 (perma.cc link): "[We found] robust evidence...that flipping journals tend to have an OA Citation Advantage compared to non Gold-OA journals, and that this advantage is already visible a few years after the switch. It corroborates the conclusions from a series of previous studies on OA flipping....Whether this citation advantage also occurs in relation to non-OA journals in general, excluding hybrid OA serials, remains to be assessed in a follow-up study....[We found] no statistically significant evidence that journals switching to OA increase their publication output faster than non Gold-OA journals do. Therefore, there is no solid evidence for an OA Publication Advantage, nor for an OA Publication Disadvantage."
- See Yi Xiang Zhan et al., Evaluation of articles in metabolism research on the basis of their citations, Biochemia Medica, December 15, 2020 (perma.cc link): In a study of metabolism journals with high and low citation rates, "most of [the open-access journals] were ranked in the top 25% for citation rate, and none were ranked in the bottom 25%. This suggests that publishing in an open access journal that provide better access to articles can increase the citation rate."
- See New research from Springer Nature confirms value in ‘Going for Gold’, Springer Nature, October 27, 2021 (perma.cc link). Both green and gold OA show the advantage, but gold significantly more than green. The advantage extends beyond citations to downloads and altmetric scores. "Gold OA articles achieve greater impact compared to subscription articles with earlier versions available e.g. via Green OA routes. On average, the latter type only achieves 1.07 times higher citations than non-OA articles, compared with 1.64 times higher achieved by Gold OA articles....Gold OA articles achieve far greater attention and awareness with nearly five times higher Altmetric Attention Scores compared to non-OA articles, while subscription articles with earlier versions available e.g. via Green OA routes only have two times higher Altmetric scores than non-OA articles in hybrid journals....Gold OA articles continue to be used more with results showing that they are downloaded over six times more than non-OA articles....Variations by discipline are seen but Gold OA exceeds the reach and impact of both non-OA articles and subscription articles with earlier versions available."
- For real-time news and comment on the open-access citation advantage (for and against its existence), follow the oa.advantage tag at the Open Access Tracking Project.
- For evidence that OA increases submissions, see Chapter 8, endnote 11 (note call at p. 159, note text at pp. 216-217). Also see the updates and supplements for p. 145, below.
- For a comprehensive annotated bibliography of studies up to 2013, including studies that do and do not support the OA citation advantage, see Steve Hitchcock, The effect of open access and downloads ('hits') on citation impact: a bibliography of studies, OpCit Project (perma.cc link).
- At p. 17, I say, "In general, scholarly journals don’t pay editors...either. In general, editors...are paid salaries by universities to free them, like authors, to donate their time and labor to ensure the quality of new work appearing in scholarly journals." Add these notes.
- Journal editors acknowledge this point, and even emphasize it as part of an argument for universities (if not publishers) to better reward their important work. See Alan Rauch, Ecce Emendator: The Cost of Knowledge for Scholarly Editors, Chronicle of Higher Education, January 23, 2014 (perma.cc link): "[S]cholarly publishing is still a big business. University libraries make enormous outlays of cash to ensure that the faculty of each department have access to the very best and most recent research. But editors see none of that money. And their labor to support the mechanism is, more often than not, completely unrewarded and unsupported."
- Also see James C. Alwine et al., What Is the Price of Science?, mBio, March 2, 2021 (perma.cc link): "Historically...[e]ditors and peer reviewers were provided minimal, if any, financial support. The scientific community considered these roles essential responsibilities to the scientific endeavor and served them voluntarily, a tradition that remains to this day."
- At p. 18, I say, "Academic publishers are not monolithic...." Add this note.
- See my article, Will open access undermine peer review?, SPARC Open Access Newsletter, September 2, 2007: "For convenience, I'll refer to those who raise [the objection that OA undermines peer review] as the publisher trade associations or lobbyists. I can't use the shorter term 'publishers' because so few have taken a position on it. Publishers are not monolithic, even if their lobbyists want to appear to speak for all of them. While some publishers do support the objection, some reject it, and a growing number of publishers embrace both OA and peer review."
- See Library Loon, Pyrrhic publishers, Gavia Libraria, June 10, 2011: "[T]he Loon must note that 'publishers' is not a monolith. 'Publishers' are not suing Georgia State; SAGE, Oxford, and Cambridge are. However. The vast bulk of toll-access publishers have consistently ranged themselves behind mendacious attacks on open access, behind Washington lobbyists fighting against the NIH Public Access Policy and policies like it, behind these lawsuits, behind anti-ETD whisper campaigns. Only a paltry few have any excuse whatever to say 'we're different from the monolith' " (emphases in original).
- At p. 18, I say, "This variety reminds us (to paraphrase Tim O'Reilly) that OA doesn't threaten publishing; it only threatens existing publishers who do not adapt." Add this note
- See Barry Eisler, The digital truths traditional publishers don't want to hear, The Guardian, April 29, 2013. "We have to be careful not to conflate publishing services with the entities that have traditionally provided them. The services are essential; the entities are not. This would seem a fairly obvious point, and yet as thoughtful and experienced a person as novelist James Patterson is now calling for a bailout of the legacy publishing industry, apparently because he fears that publishing is dying. No. Publishing isn't dying; it is evolving. Authors understand this, and are embracing it. Legacy publishers need to do the same."
- At p. 20, I say, "OA isn’t an attempt to bypass peer review." Add this comment.
- In this paragraph I say, "While OA to unrefereed preprints is useful and widespread, the OA movement isn’t limited to unrefereed preprints and, if anything, focuses on OA to peer-reviewed articles." Today I'd rewrite that sentence this way: "While OA to unrefereed preprints is useful, widespread, and growing fast, the OA movement isn’t limited to unrefereed preprints and focuses at least as much on OA to peer-reviewed articles."
- At p. 21, I say, "OA is not an attempt to reform, violate, or abolish copyright." Add these notes.
- I'm not denying that some OA proponents have recommended the reform, violation, or abolition of copyright law. Indeed, I recommend the reform of copyright myself; see my updates to an adjacent passage on p. 21, immediately below. In this passage I'm merely saying that supporting OA doesn't commit one to support any of these particular stances toward copyright.
- In a blog post from September 21, 2008, on Aaron Swartz' Guerrilla Open Access Manifesto, I disavowed illegal tactics for attaining OA. "I don't oppose the illegal tactics because I think current copyright law is just. On the contrary, I think it is grotesquely unbalanced and unjust. Nor do I oppose civil disobedience. But I don't accept that copyright infringement is civil disobedience and, more importantly, I don't accept that advancing OA through deliberate violations of copyright law would do more good than harm. I have three basic reasons: (1) OA is already lawful and doesn't require the reform or violation of copyright law, even if it could leap forward with the right reforms. (2) OA activists will never match the publishing industry's funds for litigation. (3) One of the most persistent and harmful misunderstandings of OA is that it violates copyright law. We've come a long way in educating policy-makers out of that misunderstanding. But the Orwellian Fair Copyright in Research Works Act (a.k.a. Conyers bill) is just one recent piece of evidence that we still have a lot of educating to do and that publishers can still make a lot of hay from the misunderstandings which remain. A campaign to give the publishing lobby its first valid evidence that OA violates copyright is the last thing we need. For an earlier take on some of these issues, see my 2003 article, Not Napster for Science....I should say for the record that one problem with current copyright law is that it leaves the line between legal and illegal tactics very fuzzy. By criticizing illegal tactics, I don't mean to leave the impression that it's always easy to tell what they are. By recommending only lawful tactics, I don't mean that we shouldn't push the envelope." For more background on the Conyers bill, see my three critiques of it, one from October 2008, one from March 2009, and one from March 2012.
- Also see my November 2009 article, Knowledge as a Public Good. "Copyright law originated in the 18th century when full-text copying of any lengthy text was a time-consuming and error-prone job. When copyright arose, and for centuries after, it prohibited acts that were difficult to commit. But today it prohibits acts that are easy to commit. That doesn't invalidate copyright law, as law. But it reduces the law's effectiveness as a barrier of exclusion, even if it ought not to reduce its effectiveness. The compliance arising from the difficulty of violation is no longer quite so invisibly blended together with the compliance arising from respect for the law. Hence our understanding of the extent of respect for the law is not quite so distorted. In fact, compliance is down. Way down. Speaking for the US, I doubt that we've seen more widespread and conspicuous violation of any laws since Prohibition."
- Also see my March 2016 disavowal of Sci-Hub. "Sci-Hub leaves the false impression that OA requires copyright infringement, or that OA must be unlawful....Anti-OA publishers argued for years that OA, or OA policies, intrinsically violated copyright. They were wrong, and in my opinion most of them knew it. But it took years for widespread public correction to have an effect. I was one of many who took part in that effort....One result of that communal effort is that publishers have gradually stopped raising that false objection, and newcomers have gradually stopped making that false assumption. The risk of unlawful OA services is that they could trigger a new wave of false assumptions about (1) the lawfulness of OA, (2) the wide range of lawful options for researchers to make their work OA, and (3) the importance of persuading researchers to make one of those lawful choices."
- At p. 21, I say, "OA would benefit from the right kinds of copyright reforms...." Add these notes.
- See my article, Open access and copyright, SPARC Open Access Newsletter, July 2, 2011 (perma.cc link): "For example, here are some copyright reforms that would help the cause:  Shorten the term of copyright, or at least prevent it from becoming even longer every time Mickey Mouse is about to fall into the public domain.  Ban the retroactive extension of copyright to works in the public domain.  Allow OA for orphan works, with a takedown requirement if the rightsholder steps forward and complains.  Permit the circumvention of DRM in pursuit of non-infringing uses.  Recognize that some creative works generate revenue for creators, and some don't, and that creators of the former type are harmed by unauthorized copying while creators of the latter type are harmed by the default prohibition of copying. That is, stop making royalty-free literature collateral damage in the war against revenue leaks.  Allow green OA, at least for royalty-free literature, within a certain time after publication, regardless of the publishing contract the author signed with a publisher.  Allow digitization and search indexing without permission when they result in no dissemination, or when the dissemination consists of nothing more than fair-use snippets.  Make the penalties for copyfraud (false claim of copyright) at least as severe as the penalties for infringement; that is, take the wrongful decrease in the circulation of ideas at least as seriously as the wrongful increase in the circulation of ideas."
- Idea #6 above (letting authors make their works green OA a certain number of months after publication regardless of the contracts they may have signed with publishers) has been proposed several times in Germany, for example in 2006 (from Gerd Hansen), in 2008 (from the German federal government), in 2011 (from the Social Democratic Party), and in 2013 (from the German federal government). This idea is now law in Germany, and took effect on January 1, 2014. For more background on its adoption, see Grünes Licht für grünen Weg, June 28, 2013 (perma.cc link).
- In January 2014, a similar bill was introduced in the Netherlands, and became law on July 1, 2015. (This is sometimes called the Taverne Amendment.) Also see the January 2014 defense of the Dutch bill by its leading proponent, Sander Dekker, State Secretary for Education, Culture and Science. Also see the January 2019 announcement that the Dutch Association of Universities (Vereniging van Universiteiten, VSNU) is helping authors deposit eligible works in OA repositories.
- In December 2015, a similar bill was introduced to the French Council of Ministers. For the adopted version, see Article 30 of Loi pour une république numérique, October 7, 2016.
- In February 2016 the Associazione italiana per la promozione della scienza aperta (AISA) began drafting a similar bill for the Italian parliament. On March 13, 2019, a bill of this kind was adopted by the lower house of the Italian Parliament and sent to the Senate.
- In March 2016, the Parlamentarische Gruppe Digitale Nachhaltigkeit (Parldigi) proposed a similar amendment to Swiss copyright law. The Swiss Parliament adopted the amendment on September 27, 2019. Also see this English-language summary.
- On August 1, 2017, a related law took effect in Austria. See §86 of the Bundesrecht konsolidiert: Gesamte Rechtsvorschrift für Universitätsgesetz 2002, Fassung vom 30.09.2018. University regulations may require that students submit a copy of an accepted dissertation to the university for publication, and may require that this publication (in Google's English) "must be made electronically in a publicly accessible repository." (Thanks to Daniel Hürlimann.)
- In September 2018 , Belgian law gave authors of research articles the unwaivable right to make their articles OA regardless of the contracts they might have signed with publishers, provided that the underlying research was at least half-funded by public funds, and provided that the OA is at least six months after publication in the natural sciences, and at least 12 months after publication in the humanities and social sciences. See Section 6, Article 29 (p. 68691) of the Belgisch Staatsblad for September 5, 2018.
- There is now a crowd-sourced spreadsheet (at least from December 2018, perhaps earlier) tracking European copyright laws and indicating whether they include an OA amendment.
- Also see the February 17, 2020, joint statement by several research organizations calling on the European Commission to make this kind of copyright provision uniform throughout Europe (perma.cc link). Similarly, see the February 25, 2020 call by the Conference of European Schools for Advanced Engineering Education and Research (CESAER) for similar legislation (perma.cc link). Similarly, see Liber's Draft Law for the Use of Publicly Funded Scholarly Publications (perma.cc link) to make this rule uniform across Europe (undated but apparently Spring 2021).
- Also Jeroen Sondervan et al., Sharing published short academic works in institutional repositories after six months, Liber Quarterly, October 4, 2021 (perma.cc link). This is a progress on how the Dutch Taverne Amendment of 2015 has facilitated green OA.
- For some reform recommendations that would re-balance copyright law, or correct some of its excesses, but without aiming to optimize copyright law for OA, see:
- Pamela Samuelson et al., The Copyright Principles Project: Directions for Reform, the Copyright Principles Project, September 10, 2010.
- Giancarlo F. Frosio et al., COMMUNIA policy recommendations, COMMUNIA, March 31, 2011 (perma.cc link).
- Rep. Jim Jordan et al., Republican Study Committee Policy Brief: Three Myths about Copyright Law and Where to Start to Fix it, Republican Study Committee, November 16, 2012. I'm linking to a copy of the report because the original was taken down (perma.cc link) one day after it was released.
- Principles and Proposals for Copyright Reform, from the Authors Alliance, May 21, 2014 (perma.cc link).
- Also see Re:Create, a coalition of "innovators, creators and consumers united for balanced copyright," launched April 27, 2015 ((perma.cc link).
- Also see Albert N. Greco, The Scholarly Publishing Community Should Support Changes to US Copyright Law (paywalled), Journal of Scholarly Publishing, January 2018.
- Also see John Willinsky, Copyright’s Constitutional Violation: When the Law Fails to “Promote the Progress of Science” (While Promoting Practically Everything Else), draft of a forthcoming book, February 21, 2020.
- Also see Martin Paul Eve, If I could radically reshape copyright law for research, May 23, 2020 (perma.cc link): "I would make it so that research produced by employees at publicly funded research universities could not be placed under copyright....I would allow academic researchers to re-use and to re-publish material, even that in copyright, that is necessary for their work....I would extend the current copyright exemptions for text and data mining to a blanket non-commercial research exemption. I would add an allowance to circumvent any API rate limiting or other technological protection measure for the purposes of mining material for research purposes."
- At p. 21, I say, "OA isn't an attempt deny the reality of costs."
- See the updates to p. 143 below.
- At p. 24, I say, "Not all plagiarists are smart, but the smart ones will not steal from OA sources indexed in every search engine....OA deters plagiarism." Add these notes.
- See my article, Open Access and Quality, SPARC Open Access Newsletter, October 2, 2006. "Because OA will only reduce plagiarism by smart plagiarists, the effect may be small. And today the effect is small in any case because so little of the literature is OA. But just as we can expect good things from a pest-resistant strain of wheat, even when we've just introduced it in one field, we can expect good things from this plagiarism-resistant strain of research literature."
- See this October 2016 interview with Matt Hodgkinson, Head of Research Integrity at Hindawi. He's seen a rising number of plagiarism cases since he entered academic publishing in 2003. Some of this growth is due to "an industrialization of misconduct." But some is due to better detection, thanks to OA. "Some of this is down to technology and openness enabling detection of poor practices – such as better plagiarism detection and more content being online and thus easily searchable, particularly when it is not hiding behind a paywall."
- For more on OA and plagiarism, including real-time updates, see the items tagged with oa.plagiarism by the Open Access Tracking Project.
- At p. 24, I say, "OA isn't an attempt to punish or undermine conventional publishers....The goal is constructive, not destructive." Add this note.
- See my Open Access Overview, first released June 21, 2004 and often updated: "The purpose of the campaign for OA is the constructive one of providing OA to a larger and larger body of literature, not the destructive one of putting non-OA journals or publishers out of business. The consequences may or may not overlap (this is contingent) but the purposes do not overlap."
- At p. 24, I say, "[M]ost toll-access publishers are already adapting, by allowing author-initiated OA, providing some OA themselves, or experimenting with OA." Add this note.
- See ALPSP report indicates publisher health but OA concerns, Research Information, October 24, 2013: "In 2008 half of publishers had some form of open access but this had risen to two thirds by 2012. Most publishers surveyed now have a hybrid model in place across all titles (i.e. author has option to pay for their article to be open access). However take up of the hybrid model by authors is low, 1 per cent of articles published. There has also been a large increase in publishers offering open access after an embargo period (normally 12 months)." I do not have access to the report itself, or I would quote from it directly.
- At p. 26, I use an analogy to fireworks in New York harbor to introduce the problem of distinguishing OA for professionals from OA for lay readers. Add this note.
- I should have remembered this better analogy that I used in May 2010. In defending a Congressional bill mandating OA, I tried to head off an objection that I knew publishers would raise: "Finally, FRPAA makes no assumptions about how many members of the lay public are interested in reading peer-reviewed scientific research articles. It doesn't matter that some members of the lay public won't care to read the articles that will become OA, or won't understand them, just as it doesn't matter that some drivers won't care to drive on a given stretch of publicly-funded road." See Suber, FRPAA introduced in the US House of Representatives, May 2, 2010.
- At p. 26, I say, "OA isn't universal access." Add these notes.
- One of the barriers to universal access is censorship. For an argument that an OA variant can help bypass censorship barriers, see my May 2011 article, Free Offline Access: A Primer on OA' (OA Prime): "Swapping thumb drives of OA' literature bypasses censors and surveillance in oppressive countries."
- Another barrier to universal access is the digital divide. It continues and is larger than most people think. See Ian Sample, Universal internet access unlikely until at least 2050, experts say, The Guardian, January 10, 2019. "While half the world’s population now uses the internet, a desperate lack of skills and stagnant investment mean the UN’s goal of universal access, defined as 90% of people being online, may not be reached until 2050 or later, they said....In December , the UN's International Telecommunication Union (ITU) declared that global internet access had crossed a threshold with more than half of the world's population now online....But the first half of the world was the easier to bring online. Connectivity swept through developed nations and other regions where high incomes, good education and dense urban centres smoothed the way. The second half is expected to be harder to hook up."
- At p. 27, I say, "Most online literature is in English, or another single language, and machine translation is still very weak." Add these notes.
- Machine translation has gotten a lot better since 2012 and is bound to get better still. But whether scholars can trust a machine translation of an important work in their field remains an open question.
- SpringerNature is offering to publish machine-translated books at no charge to the author (perma.cc link). I can't tell when SN first started making this offer.
- For more developments and comments, see my growing Twitter thread on multilingual research, started September 20, 2020.
- At p. 27, I refer to "handicap access barriers" and "handicapped users". Add this note.
- These terms were ill-chosen even in 2012 and I regret them. Today I'd refer to "disability access barriers" and "disabled or impaired users".
Chapter 2: Motivation
|Read the OA text:|
Updates and supplements for Chapter 2:
- For updates to Section 2.1 in general, including real-time updates, see the following tag libraries from the Open Access Tracking Project:
- At p. 29, I say, "For four decades, subscription prices have risen significantly faster than inflation and significantly faster than library budgets." Add these notes.
- Correction. In endnote 2 at p. 181, I link to a graphic from the ARL report, Monograph and Serial Expenditures in ARL Libraries, 1986-2004. The URL I used for that graphic is now dead. Here is a working URL from the Internet Archive's Wayback Machine, http://web.archive.org/web/20121030025208/http://www.arl.org/bm~doc/monser04.pdf.
- Correction. In the same endnote, I cite Stephen Bosch, Kittie Henderson, and Heather Klusendorf, "Periodicals Price Survey 2011: Under Pressure, Times Are Changing," Library Journal, April 14, 2011. The URL I used for that article is now dead, and LJ provides no redirect. Here's a working URL, http://lj.libraryjournal.com/2011/04/publishing/periodicals-price-survey-2011-under-pressure-times-are-changing/ (perma.cc link).
- See Steven Bosch and Kittie Henderson, The Winds of Change: Periodicals Price Survey 2013, Library Journal, April 25, 2013. "This year, the serials pricing data indicates that prices are increasing at about the same rate as last year. Increases seemed to have plateaued at about 6% for 2013. Data from the merged ISI indexes shows a 6% increase for 2013, unchanged from 2012....The Consumer Price Index (CPI), on the other hand, advanced 1.7% for 2012, which means serials inflation continues to far exceed general inflationary pressures and library budget adjustments."
- Data from journal aggregator EBSCO show that subscription prices from 2009 to 2013, averaged across all fields, rose by more than 20%.
- See the ARCL 2016 Academic Library Trends and Statistics, American Library Association, July 20, 2017 (perma.cc link): "In the past five years, 21% of all academic libraries saw increases for staffing while 19% saw decreased funding and 60% reported flat budgets."
- The EBSCO Serials Price Projection Report for 2019 (perma.cc link), published in September 2018, confirms that both trends continue. "Library budget growth remains a top concern, generally lagging behind annual inflation in journal pricing in spite of the annual price increase caps applied to many e-journal packages....Though overall budgets in the U.S. academic library market show modest improvements, the budget for serials materials generally have not kept pace with annual journal price inflation."
- See Stephen Bosch, Barbara Albee, and Sion Romaine, Costs Outstrip Library Budgets: Periodicals Price Survey 2020, Library Journal, April 14, 2020 (perma.cc link): "A Strategic Library 2020 Library Purchasing Survey of libraries of all types reported that almost 60 percent of respondents had a flat budget. The latest Publishers Communication Group (PCG) whitepaper Library Budget Predictions for 2018 reports that overall library budget predictions for growth are modest at a 1 percent increase....The 5 to 6 percent average price increase observed in 2020 is expected to remain constant for 2021, and this will lead to further contraction of resources for library users."
- See Dan Pollock and Ann Michael, Library Spending and the Serials Crisis, DeltaThink, May 3, 2020 (perma.cc link): "[M]edian spending on journals...continues to increase in real terms (regardless of the inflation index used), while overall library spend are now declining. This suggests that budgets, too, are in real terms decline."
- At p. 29, I say, "Subscription prices have risen about twice as fast as the price of healthcare...." Add this note.
- Correction. In endnote 2 at p. 181, I link to the Scholarly Communication FAQ from the University of California's Office of Systemwide Library Planning, February 29, 2003. The URL I used for that FAQ is now dead. Here is a working URL from the Internet Archive's Wayback Machine, http://web.archive.org/web/20070630080017/http://www.ucop.edu/copyright/2003-02-27/faq.html. On this point, the FAQ itself cites Mary Case, "Capitalizing on Competition: The Economic Underpinnings of SPARC, Association of Research Libraries, May 2001, at this URL, http://www.arl.org/sparc/core/index.asp?page=f41. But that URL is now dead as well. Here is a working URL from the Wayback Machine, http://web.archive.org/web/20010512145447/http://www.arl.org/sparc/core/index.asp?page=f41.
- Quoting Case's 2001 article: "Data collected by the Association of Research Libraries (ARL)...reveal that the unit cost paid by research libraries for serials increased by 207% between 1986 and 1999....As points of comparison, over the same time period, the consumer price index increased 52%, faculty salaries increased 68%, and health care costs increased 107%."
- Correction. In endnote 2 at p. 181, I link to the Scholarly Communication FAQ from the University of California's Office of Systemwide Library Planning, February 29, 2003. The URL I used for that FAQ is now dead. Here is a working URL from the Internet Archive's Wayback Machine, http://web.archive.org/web/20070630080017/http://www.ucop.edu/copyright/2003-02-27/faq.html. On this point, the FAQ itself cites Mary Case, "Capitalizing on Competition: The Economic Underpinnings of SPARC, Association of Research Libraries, May 2001, at this URL, http://www.arl.org/sparc/core/index.asp?page=f41. But that URL is now dead as well. Here is a working URL from the Wayback Machine, http://web.archive.org/web/20010512145447/http://www.arl.org/sparc/core/index.asp?page=f41.
- At p. 30, I start subsection #2 in which I offer data showing that researchers do not have access to all the research they need. See endnotes 3 and 4 at p. 182. Add these notes.
- Also see Jennifer Howard, JSTOR Tests Free, Read-Only Access to Some Articles, Chronicle of Higher Education, January 13, 2012: "Every year, JSTOR said, it turns away almost 150 million individual attempts [from readers without subscriptions] to gain access to articles."
- Also see Ross Housewright, Roger C. Schonfeld, and Kate Wulfson, UK Survey of Academics 2012, Ithaka S+R, May 16, 2013 (perma.cc link). From pp. 38-39: "[A]bout half of all respondents —slightly more in the arts and humanities than in other fields— strongly agreed that they “often would like to use journal articles that are not in [their] library’s print or digital collections.” And only slightly more than a third strongly agreed that they can “almost always get satisfactory access” to needed journal articles that are not in their library collections, a pattern that holds across disciplinary groupings. When asked how they gain access to needed materials that their institution’s library does not directly provide, more than two-thirds of our respondents indicated that they “often” or “occasionally” simply give up." From p. 42: "Almost 60% of academics at non-RLUK [Research Library UK] institutions strongly agreed that they would often “like to use journal articles that are not in my library’s print or digital collections,” compared with less than 40% of academics at RLUK institutions."
- Also see the Taylor & Francis Open Access Survey, March 2013. One survey question asked T&F authors what they thought of the statement, "Researchers already have access to most of the articles they need." Of 14,541 respondents, 38% disagreed (26%) or strongly disagreed (12%).
- Also see Daisy Larios et al., Access to scientific literature by the conservation community, PeerJ, July 9, 2020 (perma.cc link): "Roughly half (49%) of the respondents find it not easy or not at all easy to access scientific literature."
- Also see Mary Kennedy, The Results Are In of our Open Access Survey, ScienceOpen, October 29, 2021 (perma.cc link): "83% of the respondents agree that the scholarly community could perform research more effectively if all scientific communication were made freely available under an open access license....95% of respondents have had the experience of being unable to access a research article they needed due to paywalls....83% have downloaded an open access book for their research....Half of the respondents admitted to at least once illegally downloading a research paper that they couldn’t access because it was behind a paywall."
- At p. 30, I say, "[C]umulative price increases...forced the Harvard Library to undertake 'serious cancellation efforts' for budgetary reasons." In endnote 5 (note text at p. 182), I cite two sources. Here are eight, including the original two, in chronological order.
- A letter from Sidney Verba, the Harvard University Librarian, January 1, 2004. "As of January 1 , the University is eliminating a number of journals published by Elsevier....Harvard libraries will fulfill requests for articles from these journals through interlibrary loan and third-party document delivery services. The decision to eliminate these journals was...driven not only by current financial realities, but also —and perhaps more importantly— by the need to reassert control over our collections and to encourage new models for research publication at Harvard....Of greatest concern to the Digital Acquisitions Committee and to the University Library Council was the lack of any [Elsevier] option by which Harvard could prune its holdings and reduce its level of spending. Libraries wishing to cancel subscriptions could do so, but only by incurring steeply increased fees that obliterate any potential savings —while Elsevier's revenues continued to rise....Bundling has created an artificial environment that sustains journals that might otherwise not be viable on their own....The combined costs of Elsevier subscriptions far outrun even its closest competitors, while prudent cancellation decisions lead only to steeper fees. Like so many other institutions, Harvard's collections have become hostage to this situation. Declining the bundled agreement and intentionally reducing our outlay for Elsevier titles will ultimately give us the ability to respond to the marketplace unfettered by such artificial constraints."
- Robin Peek, "Harvard Faculty Mandates OA," Information Today, April 1, 2008. This is an interview with Stuart Shieber after the Harvard Faculty of Arts and Sciences voted unanimously for a green OA policy on February 12, 2008. Quoting Shieber: "At Harvard, serials duplication has been all but eliminated and serious cancellation efforts have been initiated. Monograph collecting has been substantially affected as well. In total, our faculty have seen qualitative reductions in access to the literature." (I link to a copy of the original article because the original URL is now dead.)
- The Report of the Task Force on University Libraries, Harvard University, November 2009. "Even during the recent years of endowment growth, the libraries struggled to collect the books, journals, and other research materials desired by current faculty and students....The reasons for these difficulties are multiple, but include the steadily rising prices of monographs and journal subscriptions....The economic downturn has made this issue even more critical than in years prior. Because library budgets have been cut, journals will need to be cancelled, with attendant cancellation fees feeding a downward spiral....Harvard must become a more forceful participant in this negotiation, leverage its combined rather than distributed weight, and not be beholden to the prices and packages determined by the major publishing houses."
- "Libraries on the Edge," Harvard Magazine, January 2010. "Through centuries, Harvard's libraries have amassed rich collections and unique holdings. But now budgetary pressures that have been building during the past decade, and intensified in the past year, threaten the ability of the world's largest private library to collect works as broadly as it has in the past. In an interview, University Library director and Pforzheimer University Professor Robert Darnton called the situation 'a crisis in acquisitions.' "
- Harvard's response to the first White House RFI on OA, January 22, 2010. "Harvard University...is not immune to the access crisis that motivates much of the campaign for public-access policies. In fact, the Harvard library system has gone through a series of serials reviews with substantial cancellations, and further cancellations will undoubtedly occur in the future."
- Harvard's response to the second White House RFI on OA, January 14, 2012. "Even Harvard University, whose library is the largest academic library in the world, is not immune to the access crisis motivating much of the campaign for public-access policies. In fact, the Harvard library system has had to make a painful series of budget-driven journal cancellations, and we are deciding on a set of further cancellations at this very moment."
- Testimony of Stuart Shieber, Professor of Computer Science and Director of Harvard's Office for Scholarly Communication, before the Subcommittee on Investigations and Oversight of the House Committee on Science, Space and Technology, March 29, 2012. "The Harvard library system is the largest academic library in the world, and the fifth largest library of any sort. In attempting to provide access to research results to our faculty and students, the university subscribes to tens of thousands of serials at a cost of about 9 million dollars per year. Nonetheless, we too have been buffeted by the tremendous growth in journal costs over the last decades, with Harvard's serials expenditures growing by a factor of 3 between 1986 and 2004. Such geometric increases in expenditures could not be sustained indefinitely. Over the years since 2004 our journal expenditure increases have been curtailed through an aggressive effort at deduplication, elimination of print subscriptions, and a painful series of journal cancellations. As a researcher, I know that Harvard does not subscribe to all of the journals that I would like access to for my own research, and if Harvard, with its scale, cannot provide optimal subscription access, other universities without our resources are in an even more restricted position."
- Faculty Advisory Council Memorandum on Journal Pricing, Harvard University, April 17, 2012. "Many large journal publishers have made the scholarly communication environment fiscally unsustainable and academically restrictive....Prices for online content from two providers have increased by about 145% over the past six years, which far exceeds not only the consumer price index, but also the higher education and the library price indices. These journals therefore claim an ever-increasing share of our overall collection budget. Even though scholarly output continues to grow and publishing can be expensive, profit margins of 35% and more suggest that the prices we must pay do not solely result from an increasing supply of new articles....The Faculty Advisory Council to the Library, representing university faculty in all schools and in consultation with the Harvard Library leadership, reached this conclusion: major periodical subscriptions, especially to electronic journals published by historically key providers, cannot be sustained: continuing these subscriptions on their current footing is financially untenable. Doing so would seriously erode collection efforts in many other areas, already compromised....Costs are now prohibitive...."
- At pp. 30-32, I say, "Several sub-Saharan African university libraries subscribed to zero [subscription-based scholarly journals in 2008], offering their patrons access to no conventional journals except those donated by publishers." Add these notes.
- See Samuel Kwaku Smith Esseh, Strengthening Scholarly Publishing in Africa: Assessing the Potential of Online Systems, doctoral dissertation at University of British Columbia, 2011 (perma.cc link), at pp. 252-253: "In most research and university libraries in Africa, the data show a serious gap in terms of inadequate funding for journal subscriptions. While a total of 26% of libraries indicated with certainty that they had not budgeted for journal subscriptions, another 11% libraries were not sure if any budget had been set aside. Those who did report available funds (less than 8%) had a budget of between $250,001 and $500,000 for journal subscriptions. The majority (32, or 49%) had a yearly budget of between $1 and $250,000. When this range is further broken down and carefully examined, what is evident is that a total of 78% of librarians (within the $1-$250,000 budget range) reported a subscription budget of less than $100,000 per year."
- See Tao Tao and Lori Carlin, China's New STM Policies: By the Numbers, DeltaThink, November 15, 2020 (perma.cc link): "Over 80% of Chinese universities may have access to little or no content behind a paywall, including content they themselves produced as researchers. With library budget increases at less than 3% annually (anecdotally), there is no reason to believe that this picture would change in the foreseeable future."
- At p. 32, I say, "[B]ig deals give universities access to more titles than they had before and reduce the average cost per title. But when libraries try to cancel individual titles that are low in quality or low in local usage, publishers raise the price on the remaining titles. Bundling gives libraries little room to save money with carefully targeted cancellations, and after a point forces them to cancel all or none." Add this note:
- See Fei Shu et al., Is It Such a Big Deal? On the Cost of Journal Use in the Digital Era, College & Research Libraries, September 2018 (perma.cc link): "big deal bundles do decrease the mean price per subscribed journal, academic libraries receive less value for their investment. We find that university researchers cite only a fraction of journals purchased by their libraries, that this fraction is decreasing, and that the cost per cited journal has increased."
- At p. 32, I say, "Big deals are too big to cancel without pain, giving publishers leverage to raise prices out of proportion to journal costs, size, usage, impact, and quality." First see endnote 7 at pp. 182-183. Add this note:
- See Stephen Bosch, Barbara Albee, and Sion Romaine, Deal or No Deal: Periodicals Price Survey 2019, Library Journal, April 4, 2019. For evidence that journal subscription price increases do not correlate with any tested journal impact metric, see the graphic just below Table 9.
- At p. 32, I say, "In 2010, Elsevier's journal division had a profit margin of 35.7 percent while ExxonMobil had only 28.1 percent." Add this note.
- The profit margin for STM publishing at Elsevier rose to 39% in 2013. See the Reed Elsevier Annual Reports and Financial Statements 2013. (Thanks to Heather Morrison.)
- The profit margin for academic publishing at Informa, which owns Taylor & Francis, was 35% in 2013. See Informa's Full Year Results for the Year Ended 31 December 2013. (Thanks to Heather Morrison.)
- See David Harvie, Geoff Lightfoot, Simon Lilley, and Kenneth Weir, What are we to do with feral publishers? Organization, August 14, 2012. Quoting from the self-archived edition: "Sage, the publisher of this journal, shows a gross profit across both books and journals of over 60 per cent. A smaller publisher, Emerald, which concentrates more on journals, is able to register a gross profit of over 75 per cent. Given that the perceived quality of the journal enables publishers to demand higher prices, and Emerald has relatively few highly ranked journals, it is likely that gross profits for journals for major publishers are even higher than the 77 per cent recorded by Emerald. We are aware of only two other industries where these sorts of return are on offer: that in illegal drugs and the delivery of university-level business education...."
- At p. 33, I say, "[Most] big deals include confidentiality clauses preventing universities from disclosing the prices they pay. The effect is to reduce bargaining and price competition even further." Add this note.
- Also see Elsevier's David Tempest defend confidentiality clauses in answer to a question at Oxford University, April 2013. Watch the video or read this portion of the transcript: "Stephen Curry...: I’m glad David Tempest is so interested in librarians being able to make costs transparent to their users, because at my university, Imperial College, my chief librarian can not tell me how much she pays for Elsevier journals because she’s bound by a confidentiality clause. Would you like to address that? [Loud applause for the question] David Tempest: Well, indeed there are confidentiality clauses inherent in the system, in our Freedom Collections. The Freedom Collections do give a lot of choice and there is a lot of discount in there to the librarians. And the use, and the cost per use has been dropping dramatically, year on year. And so we have to ensure that, in order to have fair competition between different countries, that we have this level of confidentiality to make that work. Otherwise everybody would drive down, drive down, drive drive drive, and that would mean that ... [The last part is drowned in the laughter of the audience.]"
- For another kind of defense of confidentiality clauses, see Phil Davis, Non-Disclosure Agreements — Economic Tool or Kabuki Theatre? Scholarly Kitchen, May 29, 2012. Davis argues that signing non-disclosure agreements (NDAs) and then violating them in private can help libraries more than abolishing NDAs. But he does not provide data on how many librarians follow this practice, and he does not argue that actual non-disclosure would help libraries more than disclosure.
- At p. 33, I quote James McPherson's findings from 2003: "In 1986 [academic] libraries spent 44 percent of their budgets on books and 56 percent on journals; by 1997 the imbalance had grown to 28 percent for books and 72 percent for journals." Add this note.
- See David Harvie, Geoff, Lightfoot, Simon Lilley, and Kenneth Weir, What are we to do with feral publishers? Organization, August 14, 2012. Quoting from the self-archived edition: "Since 1999, spending on books has fallen by almost a fifth in real terms, and from almost 12 per cent of libraries' total spending to just over 8 per cent. Expenditure on serials, on the other hand, has increased sharply: from just under £70 million to over £130 million. In real terms this represents an increase of 63 per cent; journals' share of total library spending rose from 16 per cent to almost 20 per cent."
- See Robert Darnton, The New Age of the Book, New York Review of Books, March 18, 1999: "Until recently, monographs used to account for at least half the acquisitions budget of most research libraries. In 1996-1997, however, 78 percent of the acquisitions budget in the library of the University of Illinois at Chicago went for periodicals, 21 percent for monographs. Syracuse University’s library spent 75 percent on periodicals and 17 percent on monographs. The library at the University of Hawaii spent 84 percent on periodicals and 12 percent on monographs. (The numbers don’t add up to 100 percent, since there are other categories of expenditures.) The decline in the purchase of monographs among large research libraries over the last ten years comes to 23 percent."
- See Stephen Bosch, Barbara Albee, and Sion Romaine, Costs Outstrip Library Budgets: Periodicals Price Survey 2020, Library Journal, April 14, 2020 (perma.cc link): "On average, doctoral degree-granting institutions spent 77.2 percent of their materials budgets on ongoing commitments to subscriptions in 2017; comprehensive schools spent an average of 82.4 percent; baccalaureate schools spent an average of 79.5 percent, and associate degree-granting institutions spent an average of 64.9 percent. On average, academic libraries spent 76 percent of their materials budget on ongoing subscriptions."
- See Dan Pollock and Ann Michael, Library Spending and the Serials Crisis, DeltaThink, May 3, 2020 (perma.cc link): "Serials spending is growing, and is taking an increasing share of library budgets (from around 25% share in 1998 to just under 40% share in 2019 in our data). In this sense, there is a 'serials crisis.'"
- At p. 33, I say, "[T]he journal crisis, concentrated in the sciences, has precipitated a monograph crisis, concentrated in the humanities." Add this note.
- For evidence that the effect on book purchases was delayed, especially for university-press books, see Elisabeth A. Jones and Paul N. Courant, Killer serials: Did electronic journals really destroy the university press? Proceedings of the American Society for Information Science and Technology 50, 1 (2013) pp. 1-11. "Our first research question asked whether there had actually been a downturn in library purchasing of university press books since 1985, and if so, whether that decline was temporally coincident with the sharp increases in serials prices that began in the 1980s and 1990s....[Q]uite intriguingly, the answer to the second question would appear to be a decisive no: only one library in the sample – the very smallest, at Barry University – shows a consistent decline in purchasing from university presses extending back to the 1980s. To the extent that any of the other libraries cut their purchasing from the sample presses, they tended to do so later, mainly around either 2000 or 2007 – dates which, likely not coincidentally, mark the beginnings of the two most recent major U.S. economic downturns....Libraries’ overall monographic purchasing may have gone flat in the 1980s and declined after 2000, but based on these data, the same cannot be said for their purchasing of university press monographs. Cutting those purchases truly does seem to have been a strategy of last resort, likely linked more closely to the overall economic conditions of the past decade than to the rising serials costs which came much earlier...."
- At p. 34, I say, "Some publishers don't allow libraries to share digital texts by interlibrary loan and instead require them to make printouts, scan the printouts, and lend the scans." Add this note.
- See Eric Hellman, eBook ILL is silly. The reason why will bore you, Go To Hellman, March 22, 2014. "But if a library can do digital ILL, what is to prevent libraries from sharing a resource so widely that only one library in the world needs to buy the item? The solution that e-journal publishers typically use is the "print-and-ship" solution. In other words, a library is allowed to send articles from a subscribed journal only if they print it out first. The transaction is thus identical to what it was back in the dark ages of ink and paper and xerox machines. For publishers, the friction of print-and-ship discourages libraries from canceling subscriptions; besides, the big-deal model of bundling many subscriptions into one has been much more advantageous for publishers than the document-delivery model that ILL competes with....Printing article PDFs and mailing them is a stretch, but mapping this model into ebooks is a farther stretch...."
- At p. 35, I say, "[Libraries] must explain to patrons that cookies and registration make anonymous inquiry impossible and that some uses allowed by law are not allowed by the technology." Add this note:
- See Cody Hanson, User Tracking on Academic Publisher Platforms, presentation at the Coalition for Networked Information Spring 2019 Member Meeting, April 8-9, 2019. "I studied the page source from fifteen different publisher platform sites and found that publishers of library resources use technology on their platforms that actively undermine patron privacy. This advertising and marketing technology makes it impossible to ensure that the use of electronic library resources can be private....I found that, on average, each publisher site had eighteen third-party assets being loaded on their article pages. The median was ten. One publisher platform, the only one I will name here today, had zero: InformPubsOnline. One platform had over 100. In total, I found 139 different third-party asset sources across these fifteen articles."
- At p. 37, I say, "Editors and referees donate the peer-review judgments to improve and validate [the] quality [of journal articles]." Add this note.
- In endnote 13 (note call at p. 37, note text at p. 184) I cite a study showing that the value of this unpaid labor, worldwide, came to about £1.9 billion/year in 2008, or about $3 billion/year. However, the URL for that citation points to a news article about the study, not the study itself. First, the URL to the news article has changed to this: http://www.timeshighereducation.co.uk/402189.article. Second, here's the full citation and proper link to the study itself: Activities, costs and funding flows in the scholarly communications system, Research Information Network, May 19, 2008. Third, here's an excerpt from the study at p. 8: "We have estimated the unpaid non-cash costs of peer review undertaken in the main by academics at £1.9bn globally each year [about $3bn]. If payment were to be made in cash to meet these costs, there would be a significant transfer of funds to academics and the HE sector globally. If universities were able to capture the payments made to peer reviewers, it might be possible to make these payments neutral in terms of university budgets. But our assumption is that the majority of payments would in effect form additions to salaries. Since the estimated breakeven price of a major discipline journal would increase by 43%, the result would be an increase in the costs of subscriptions to academic institutions globally of the order of £1.4bn. The estimated increase in the costs of subscriptions to UK libraries in the HE sector would be of the order of £53m, a rise of 45% compared with their current subscription expenditure."
- At p. 37, I say, "Publishers argue that they add value to the submitted manuscripts, which is true. But other players in the game, such as authors, editors, and referees, add far more value than publishers." Add these notes.
- See my article, Archived postprints should identify themselves, SPARC Open Access Newsletter, May 2, 2005: "If you tuned in late, I acknowledge that journals add value. It's a myth that OA wants to dispense with these valuable services....The true bone of contention is not whether these services are valuable but [whether they are worth what we pay for them, and] how to pay for the most essential services without creating access barriers for readers."
- I stand by my comment from March 26, 2007 (perma.cc link): "Speaking for myself, I've never denied that journals add value. To me the question is not whether a journal adds value but how to pay for the most essential kinds of added value without creating access barriers for readers." This is entirely compatible with my other arguments that publishers often subtract value as well (more below).
- The value added by conventional publishers must be weighed against the value subtracted by their business model. See my article, Problems and opportunities (blizzards and beauty), SPARC Open Access Newsletter, July 2, 2007: "[A]fter [subscription-based] publishers add value through peer review and copy editing they feel financial pressure to subtract value by imposing password barriers, locking files to prevent copying or cutting/pasting, freezing data into images, cutting good articles solely for length, and turning gifts into commodities which may not be further shared."
- OA publishers can add the same value as TA publishers. Hence, even if the added value is high, it's not an argument for TA over OA. It's merely an argument for publishing over non-publishing. Moreover, after adding value, OA publishers do not subtract value, as conventional publishers do.
- See my article, Balancing author and publisher rights, SPARC Open Access Newsletter, June 2, 2007: In a position paper by the ALPSP (Association of Learned and Professional Society Publishers), AAP/PSP (Association of American Publishers / Professional/Scholarly Publishing), and STM (International Association of Scientific, Technical & Medical Publishers), "publishers are arguing that because they add value to the publication, they deserve exclusive rights in it....This is neither balanced nor good for research. Publishers do add value, primarily the organization of expert volunteers who provide peer review. But no matter how many other forms of publisher-added value we recognize, and no matter how we estimate their overall benefits, there's no doubt that publishers add *less* value to the final product than authors, who do the research and writing, and funders, who pay for the original research....There are two main reasons why we find ourselves in the odd situation in which publishers get to control access even though they add less value than authors or funders. The first is that publishers demand compensation for their services, while authors and funders do not. The second is that publishers believe the only way to be compensated is to control access and charge for it. This is their business model from the age of print, when it was physically impossible to make perfect copies for a worldwide audience at zero marginal cost. Their business model depends on scarcity, which for digital texts in a networked world is always artificial scarcity. Publishers are not appealing to the principle that adding value carries the right to control access. If they were, then all contributors who added value would have to share control. Nor are they appealing to the principle that the right to control access belongs to the contributor who adds the greatest value. If they were, they'd have to make a serious argument that their contribution is more valuable than the author's or funder's. They are demanding the right to control access because they need compensation for their services and choose a business model that depends on access barriers and artificial scarcity. Even if we don't think this situation is perverse and cries out for change, at least we should notice that their position is not about balance. It's about what publishers need or want, regardless of what authors need or want. Am I saying that publishers should join authors and funders in working without direct monetary compensation? Not at all. Publishers deserve to be paid for the value they add. But it doesn't follow that they deserve to control access...."
- See David Goodman et al., Open Access and Accuracy: a comparison of authors' self-archived manuscripts and published articles, Learned Publishing, July 2007 (self-archived version) (perma.cc link): "Advocates of [self-archiving] are certain that these versions differ only trivially from the publishers' versions; many of those who oppose them are equally certain that there can be major discrepancies. In a pilot study, we have examined the actual differences in a small number of such article pairs in the social sciences and in biology. Using an operational classification of the extent of error, we have determined that neither pronouncement is likely to be correct. We found numerous small differences that affect readability between open access and publishers' versions. We also found a low frequency of potentially confusing errors, but sometimes it was the publisher's and sometimes the manuscript version that was more accurate. We found two cases where errors introduced by the publisher omit technical details that are necessary to evaluate the validity of the conclusions. However, we found no error that actually affected the validity of the data or results."
- See Edward Wates and Robert Campbell, Author’s version vs. publisher’s version: an analysis of the copy-editing function, Learned Publishing, April 2007: "In a sample of 189 articles the process of copy-editing resulted in a significant number of changes. None of these materially altered the conclusions of an article, which is more the purview of the peer-review process, but they did produce a more consistent and accurate article of record. This is particularly important in the electronic environment, where accuracy of linking, for example, could be critical in establishing correct citation data."
- Also see Alma Swan's July 7, 2007 recap of the Wates and Campbell data: "The biggest category of corrections by the publisher [Blackwell] was concerned with the references (42.7% of all copy editing changes), the next biggest category (34.5%) was concerned with minor syntactical or grammatical changes and a small proportion (5.5%) of changes corrected author ‘errors that might otherwise have led to misunderstanding or misinterpretation’."
- Also see Corey Tomsons' July 11, 2007 comment (perma.cc link): "With the arrival of open access, publishers are understandably worried they might be cut out of the process....Given that Robert Campbell is President and Publisher of Blackwell, and Edward Wates is Blackwell’s UK Journal Production Director, it should be no surprise the study give a rosy picture of the contributions by their own publishing company. It may also be no surprise that overwhelming number of errors involve citations – a category of error which might be caused in part by publishers’ insistence upon in-house style guides."
- See Richard Smith, A great day for science, The Guardian, October 11, 2008. "Indeed, publishers arguably subtract value by Balkanising the research. Scientific research is fundamentally different from a thing, a car or a banana, in that ideas can be exchanged and increase exponentially without anybody losing. The more people have access to scientific ideas, the more new ideas." If I may paraphrase: TA publishers subtract value by blocking or diminishing network effects. Also see Smith's later piece, A bad bad week for access, The Guardian, June 28, 2012. "[OA is] taking a long time to come. The vested interests are huge, powerful, and well connected. None of the people who wrote the articles I've been accessing were paid for writing them. They are supported by public money, and publishers are making money by restricting access to their work. I argued to the Monopolies and Mergers Commission that far from adding value to the publishing process publishers are subtracting value. I stand by that, and I'm angry."
- See Glenn S. McGuigan and Robert D. Russell, The Business of Academic Publishing: A Strategic Analysis of the Academic Journal Publishing Industry and its Impact on the Future of Scholarly Publishing, E-JASL: The Electronic Journal of Academic and Special Librarianship, Winter 2008. McGuigan and Russell quote from a Deutsche Bank report ("Reed Elsevier: Moving the Supertanker," Company Focus: Global Equity Research Report, January 11, 2005, p. 36, not online): "We believe the publisher adds relatively little value to the publishing process. We are not attempting to dismiss what 7,000 people at [Reed Elsevier] do for a living. We are simply observing that if the process really were as complex, costly and value-added as the publishers protest that it is, 40% margins wouldn't be available."
- I stand by my statement from March 2, 2011: "Among fee-based OA journals, competition for authors will include fee competition. Competition for authors should mean more added value, such as shortening turnaround times and integrating text and data files. It should also mean less subtracted value, such as truncating good articles solely for length, locking PDFs, and freezing processable data into unprocessable images."
- See Sanford G. Thatcher, Copyediting's Role in an Open-Access World, Against the Grain, April 2011 (perma.cc link). Summarizing a study comparing the accepted author manuscripts in DASH, the Harvard OA repository, with the versions of record published in journals: "By and large, the copyediting did not result in any major improvements of the manuscripts as they appear at the DASH site. As with the technical editing done for STM journals...the vast majority of changes made were for the sake of enforcing a house formatting style and cleaning up a variety of inconsistencies and infelicities, none of which reached into the substance of the writing or affected the meaning other than by adding a bit more clarity here and there. More problematic from the viewpoint of scholarly rigor are the errors in citation and inaccuracies in quotation. As noted in my earlier article, mistakes like these have a way of being repeated since people will often not take the trouble to go back to the original texts but merely trust the authors of these articles to have given the right information about page numbers, dates of publication, authors’ names, and the like and to have accurately transcribed passages from the sources used. Unfortunately, these are just the kinds of errors that are seldom caught by copyeditors either because the extra work involved in discovering them to be errors is usually not considered to be justified by the publishers who pay the copyeditors." Also see comments on the Thatcher study by Phil Davis, Stuart Shieber, and Ellen Duranceau.
- See Ross Mounce, A visit to the BioMedCentral offices, November 7, 2012 (perma.cc link): "Another thing I learn’t from this manuscript was that publishers commonly outsource their typesetting to developing countries (for the cheaper labor available there). So in this instance BMC sent our MS to the Philippines to be re-typeset for publication and when the proofs came back we encountered some really comical errors e.g. Phylomatic had been re-typeset as ‘phlegmatic’."
- See Andrew Odlyzko, Open Access, library and publisher competition, and the evolution of general commerce, preprint, February 4, 2013. "As an author, I ﬁnd that copy editing subtracts value, by forcing me to do extra work, usually for no good reason, and often to correct what the copy editors have done." This is my own experience as well.
- See Richard Smith, The business of academic publishing: “a catastrophe”, The Lancet, October 6, 2018. "As I watched Paywall: The Business of Scholarship, I was taken back 30 years to when I thought for the first time about the business aspects of academic publishing. I was an assistant editor at the BMJ, and the editor asked me to join a meeting with a group of rheumatologists who wanted a share in the Annals of Rheumatic Diseases, a journal we owned. “We do the research published in the journal”, said one of the rheumatologists. “We do the peer review, we edit the journal, we read it, and we store it in our libraries. What do you do?” “Tell them what we do”, said the editor to me. I was at a complete loss."
- See Martin Klein et al., Comparing published scientific journal articles to their pre-print versions, International Journal on Digital Libraries, December 2019 (first online at this journal February 2018) (perma.cc link): "Our analysis revealed that the text contents of the scientific papers generally changed very little from their pre-print to final published versions." Also note that the April 2016 preprint version (perma.cc link) of this article, posted to arXiv, triggered online discussion long before the December 2019 journal version. The quoted sentence appears in both versions.
- Also see Clarissa Carneiro et al., Comparing quality of reporting between preprints and peer-reviewed articles in the biomedical literature, Research Integrity and Peer Review, December 1, 2020 (perma.cc link): "The greatest difference observed from preprints to their peer-reviewed versions was the prevalence of conflict of interest statements, an item that is commonly required at journal submission."
- Also see Jessica Polka et al., Preprints in motion: tracking changes between posting and journal publication, bioRxiv, April 4, 2021 (perma.cc link): "Does the information shared in preprints typically withstand the scrutiny of peer review, or are conclusions likely to change in the version of record? We found that the total number of figure panels and tables changed little between preprint and published articles. Moreover, the conclusions of 6% of non-COVID-19-related and 15% of COVID-19-related abstracts undergo a discrete change by the time of publication, but the majority of these changes do not reverse the main message of the paper."
- For another example of subtracted value, see Samuel Moore in a tweet thread, July 24, 2020. "Just spent three hours fixing typesetter-introduced errors in a forthcoming article. They had swapped around two sentences in the abstract (???) and incorrectly introduced commas left, right and centre. The reason this takes so long to fix is that the errors were so basic that it completely shattered my trust in their competence. I'm still pretty sure I missed half the errors they introduced and have no faith that my corrections will be implemented correctly."
- For another example of subtracted value, see Conor Meehan in a tweet thread, February 6, 2021. "Journal-enforced limits of reference numbers suck. All these papers deserve the excellent credit for all the excellent work our paper is built on and now I have to cut some for an out of date paper publication reason."
- For another example of subtracted value, see Mike Taylor, Elsevier charge $37.95 for access to an unformatted manuscript with intrusive watermarking and the illustrations removed, Sauropod Vertebra Picture of the Week, March 3, 2021 (perma.cc link).
- Also see Peerzada Tajamul Mumtaz, Impact of 'impact factor' on early-career scientists, Rising Kashmir, August 14, 2021 (perma.cc link): "Pressuring early-career scientists to publish in high-impact multidisciplinary journals may also force them to squeeze their best work into a restrictive publication format (limiting page numbers and graphical elements) that, ironically, can reduce its ultimate impact."
- At p. 38, I say, "[M]ore than 7,500 peer-reviewed OA journals are finding ways to pay their bills." Add this note.
- When I submitted the book manuscript in the spring of 2011, the Directory of Open Access Journals (DOAJ) listed about 7,500 peer-reviewed OA journals. The number has grown significantly since then, even while the DOAJ has significantly tightened the criteria for inclusion. See the DOAJ front page for the latest number.
- At p. 39, I say, "Scholarly publishing is permeated by state action, public subsidies, gift culture, and anticompetitive practices." Add this note.
- Also see my March 2010 article, Open access, markets, and missions: "Publishers benefit from all these traditional distortions or modifications of the market and only protest new ones that would benefit researchers. In formulating their objections, they position themselves as champions of the free market, not as beneficiaries of its many distortions and modifications. Some stakeholders see scholarly publishing as the best of both worlds: a functional hybrid of public funding to produce research and private profit seeking to vet and distribute it. Others see it as the worst of both worlds: a dysfunctional monster in which research funded by taxpayers and donated by authors is funneled to businesses which lock it up and meter it out to paying customers. But there's no doubt that it's a cross of two worlds. To call it a market is like calling mule a horse."
- At p. 39, I say, "Most scientific research is funded by public agencies using public money, conducted and written up by researchers working at public institutions and paid with public money, and then peer-reviewed by faculty at public institutions and paid with public money. Even when researchers and peer reviewers work at private universities, their institutions are subsidized by publicly funded tax exemptions and tax-deductible donations. Most toll-access journal subscriptions are purchased by public institutions and paid with taxpayer money." Add this note.
- See Stuart Shieber, Public underwriting of research and open access, The Occasional Pamphlet, April 4, 2014. "The penetration of the notion of “taxpayer-funded research”, of “research their tax dollars have paid for”, is far greater than you might think....[A]ll university research benefits from the social contract with taxpayers that makes universities tax-exempt....It’s difficult to estimate the size of this form of support to universities. The best estimate I’ve seen puts it at something like $50 billion per year for the income tax exemption. That’s more than the NIH, NSF, and (hardly worth mentioning) the NEH put together. It’s on par with the total non-defense federal R&D funding....All university research, not just the grant-funded research, benefits from the taxpayer underwriting implicit in the tax exemption social contract. It would make sense then, in return, for taxpayers to require open access to all university research in return for continued tax-exempt status...."
- At p. 39, I say, "Every scholarly journal is a natural mini-monopoly in the sense that no other journal publishes the same articles." Add these notes.
- Where I said, "Every scholarly journal is..." I'd like to say instead, "Every scholarly journal today is...." This kind of mini-monopoly is optional, and breaking the mini-monopoly is desirable. See Peter Suber, Thoughts on first and second-order scholarly judgments, Free Online Scholarship Newsletter, April 8, 2002. First-order scholarly judgments are judgments about what is true or probably true on a given topic or question. Second-order judgments are about which first-order judgments you ought to read, given your research project or limited time. Second-order judgments can be produced by services using careful human study, such as conventional peer review, or by tools, such as search engines. "The beauty of second-order [services and tools]...is that there can never be too many of them. If proliferating first-order judgments creates information overload, then proliferating second-order judgments creates competition, and this competition will be beneficial for users....Second-order judgments are valuable even when they conflict, because different users have different needs, interests, projects, standards, and approaches. You should have a choice among services competing to help you decide what deserves your time and attention." What I've called free-floating editorial boards (February 2009 blog post) or freestanding editorial boards (this book, p. 64]) can create any number of coexisting and competing peer-review judgments on the same work. Of course, these independent editorial boards can themselves be judged by other second-order judgments (or if you like, third-order judgments) and develop their own reputations for scope, methodological orientation, rigor, reliability, and bias.
- See Peter Suber, "Preface" to Solomon, Laakso, and Björk, Converting Scholarly Journals to Open Access: A Review of Approaches and Experiences, Harvard Library, June 2016, p. 3, where I argue that this natural mini-monopoly is one reason (among other reasons) to favor flipping toll-access journals to OA over launching new OA journals. "[W]ithout question, new OA journals advance the primary goal of providing OA to more and more research. But they don't save libraries money, an important secondary goal. They don't save libraries money unless they justify the cancellation of existing subscription journals. But because different journals publish different articles, journals are not fungible, and free journals do not directly displace priced journals, or justify their cancellation, even when they exist in the same field and at the same level of quality. By contrast, every converted OA journal removes a subscription line from the budget of every subscribing library, without removing access to the journal's research. This frees up money for other good purposes, including the growth and sustainability of OA itself. It helps solve the inescapable background problem that the money needed to support high-quality OA in every field is largely tied up in subscriptions to conventional, non-OA journals. The alternative is to find significant new money for OA, which is as unlikely as it is unnecessary."
- See Alexander Grossmann and Björn Brembs, Assessing the size of the affordability problem in scholarly publishing, PeerJ, June 18, 2019, preprint. "[E]ach article can be found at only one journal of one publisher exclusively. Hence, due to this lack of competition, subscription pricing need not be coupled to publication costs...The APC-OA 'market'...suffers from analogous non-substitutability problems as the subscription market, leading to market failure and hyper-inflation also there [citations]....It is therefore straightforward to hypothesize that any policy that fails to address the non-substitutability problem in scholarly communication will also fail to solve the affordability problem."
- At p. 40, I say, "Laid on top of this natural monopoly are several layers of artificial monopoly." Add these notes.
- See Mark McCabe, The impact of publisher mergers on journal prices: an update. ARL Bimonthly Report, #207, December 1999. "During the sample period (1988–1998) two significant mergers occurred: one between Pergamon (57 biomedical titles) and Elsevier (190) and the other between Lippincott (15) and Kluwer (75). To estimate the impact of these mergers on the prices of the biomedical journals being studied, a subset of data from the larger sample of medical libraries was analyzed. According to these empirical estimates, each of these mergers was associated with substantial price increases; in the case of the Elsevier deal the price increase was due solely to increased market power....For example, compared to premerger prices, the Elsevier deal resulted in an average price increase of 22% for former Pergamon titles, and an 8% increase for Elsevier titles. This asymmetry probably reflects the corresponding asymmetry in premerger journal portfolio size for the two firms. That is, Pergamon’s relatively small biomedical portfolio prevented it from realizing it could profitably set prices at the same level as Elsevier for journals in the same class. In the Lippincott/Kluwer merger, a 35% price increase in former Lippincott titles was due in part to increased market power, but also due in part to an apparent increase in the inelasticity of demand for the titles. That is, after the merger, Lippincott titles were even less likely to be cancelled. These results also contain a likely explanation for the persistent journal price inflation observed in most academic fields.10 The sensitivity of library demand to price increases is very small by normal standards (a 1% increase in price results in a 0.3% decline in subscriptions). Given this inelastic demand, publishers have a strong incentive to increase prices faster than the growth rate of library budgets...."
- See Pritpal Tamber, Is Scholarly Publishing Becoming a Monopoly? BioMed Central News and Views, an editorial, October 3, 2000. "In recent years merger mania has dominated the professional publishing landscape....Between January 1998 and June 1999, the number of leading publishers in science/technology fell from 13 to 10 as Wolters Kluwer swallowed up Ovid Technologies and Plenum publishing, and the Thomson Corporation left the medical field entirely....At the same time, the medical publishing industry was reduced from eight to five leading publishers....However, all this activity would have paled to insignificance had a proposed merger between Reed Elsevier...and Wolters Kluwer taken place in 1998. This would have created the largest player in the professional publishing industry, leap-frogging the Thomson Corporation (which has little activity in the science/technology or medical markets). The merger failed after facing regulatory scrutiny...but the companies continued to make acquisitions of smaller companies, Reed Elsevier making up to 70 in 18 months....."
- In the wake of Reed Elsevier's 2001 acquisition of Harcourt, the UK Office of Fair Trading (OFT) investigated anti-competitive practices in the academic journal publishing industry. In September 2002 it issued its report, The market for scientific, technical and medical journals. In Chapter 5, the report lists "evidence that the market may not be working well", including hyperinflationary price increases (Section 5.1), higher prices at large for-profit publishers than small non-profit publishers (5.2 - 5.5), use of high-profit journals to subsidize low-profit journals (5.7), higher profit margins in STM fields than in other fields (5.9 - 5.11), and bundling (5.12 - 5.13). In Chapter 7, the OFT admits that the "evidence...gives cause for concern" but explains why it is reluctant to intervene. One reason, ironically, is that publisher price increases have been so excessive for so long that "a point may have been reached where it is in the interests of publishers, as well as customers, the level of price increases to be reduced" (7.2). Another reason, also ironic, is the incipient open-access movement (7.4 - 7.7). The report concludes that, "However, if competition fails to improve, or should additional significant information come to light, we may consider further action." Also see the OFT press release for the report. Prices have continued to rise faster than inflation since the report came out, but the OFT has not acted.
- See Thomas M. Susman and David J. Carter, Publisher Mergers: A Consumer-Based Approach to Antitrust Analysis, Information Access Alliance, June 2003 (perma.cc link). "By reducing competition and raising prices, publishers of STM and legal serial publications are forcing libraries to eliminate subscriptions and reducing broad access to research information. While publishers continue to reap the benefits of higher prices (despite fewer subscriptions), the body of academic research is reaching an ever-diminishing audience....If...the journals of the merging entities compete directly for library funds, antitrust authorities should be willing to block those mergers even though the journals seem to have little facial content overlap."
- See Albert A. Foer, Can Antitrust Save Academic Publishing? A presentation at the American Library Association Annual Meeting, Orlando, Florida, June 28, 2004. At the time, Foer was the President of the The American Antitrust Institute. "Between the merger wave [in academic publishing] and the invention of the Big Deal, not only the nation but the English-speaking world seems to be headed for that dangerous territory in which a small number of individuals, working through international corporations, may gain the power to control important aspects of the production and distribution of critically important information. We have an obligation to stop this movement."
- See Thomas M. Susman, Statement on Behalf of the Information Access Alliance, Prepared for the U.S. Department of Justice and Federal Trade Commission Hearings on Single-Firm Anticompetitive Conduct, November 2006. "The IAA believes that single-firm anticompetitive conduct accounts at least in some part for the serious probl