Re: A Note of Caution About "Reforming the System"

From: Stevan Harnad <>
Date: Tue, 17 Dec 2002 00:04:01 +0000

On Mon, 16 Dec 2002, Barry Mahon wrote:

>sh> If and when the (500,000?) authors of the annual 2,000,000 articles
>sh> self-archive their peer-reviewed final drafts ("postprints") in their
>sh> own institutional OAI-compliant Eprint Archives (all interoperable with
>sh> one another, harvestable, hence seamlessly internavigable), that primary
>sh> goal [open access to the entire peer-reviewed literature] will be reached.
> I am glad you didn't say 'free' Open Access;

I did. Open access means: free, online, full-text access:

> apart from the non-trivial questions of how such a seamless system
> would be organised technically and organisationally,



> how will it be paid for?

How are local university websites paid for?

Add about $10 annually per paper self-archived
(and that includes the time it took to self-archive it).

As to how the $500 per paper peer-review service will be paid for
if/when journal access-tolls no longer cover it because of user
preference for the open-access version, see:

> Another consideration; how will developing countries access this store?

The same way they access anything else on the web. (And certainly more fully
and openly than their current toll access!)

> P.S. Thank you for the comprehensive summary of your position on OA.

You're welcome. It is not a new position, but I'm happy to keep
summarizing it for those who are seriously interested, if it helps...

Stevan Harnad

NOTE: A complete archive of the ongoing discussion of providing open
access to the peer-reviewed research literature online is available at
the American Scientist September Forum (98 & 99 & 00 & 01 & 02):

Discussion can be posted to:

See also the Budapest Open Access Initiative:

the Free Online Scholarship Movement:

the OAI site:

and the free OAI institutional archiving software site:
Received on Tue Dec 17 2002 - 00:04:01 GMT

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