Re: EPrints, DSpace or ESpace?

From: Stevan Harnad <>
Date: Wed, 12 Feb 2003 12:04:26 +0000

I think Derek Sergeant's view and my own have now converged as closely
as they are likely to.

Derek's first concern continues to be long-term
preservation, mine continues to be immediate access. We both agree that
self-archiving of open-access versions of toll-access research should
be immediate. Neither EPrints nor DSpace (nor CERN, nor ArXiv) is
OAIS-compliant --
-- and I think that is irrelevant, whereas Derek thinks it
is not. (If ever it becomes relevant, it will be implemented: )

On Wed, 12 Feb 2003, D M Sergeant wrote:

> SH> Without content, there is no content to preserve.
>DS> This is a chicken and egg situation.
>DS> Without content, there is no content to self-archive.

Currently, 2,000,000 articles of toll-access content appear annually
in 20,000 toll-access journals, with both on-paper and on-line
versions. That's neither fish nor fowl, but it's the content in question,
the content that needs to be preserved. No chicken/egg situation there.

Over and above that, there is a tiny but growing set of online
*duplicates* of a tiny subset of the above toll-access content,
self-archived by their own authors, for immediate access and impact. The
much-needed growth of this supplementary, *duplicate* content is being
held back today by (among other things) premature and irrelevant worries
about its preservation! It is about that not-yet-existent because
not-yet-self-archived duplicate content, and its lost daily access and
impact, that I said "without content, there is no content to preserve." No
chicken/egg situation there either.

>DS> Done well means doing the best possible job. Why should immediate
>DS> preservation be deferred?

Because preservation concerns today should be focussed where they belong:
on the primary corpus, the 2,000,000 annual toll-access versions,
in the 20,000 toll-access journals, not on the long-overdue efforts
to increase their access and impact immediately by self-archiving a
duplicate version, today.

Focusing instead on the latter is not only missing the target, but
further slowing a vast yet long-overdue immediate benefit to research
and researchers.

>DS> You do not need to be concerned about my database app. However,
>DS> I do need to be concerned about it. There are many things being
>DS> lost year after year.

Including, maybe, the toll-access versions of the annual 2,000,000
articles (of which the self-archived open-access versions are only a tiny
duplicate subset)?

>DS> Hopefully it will be two-fold. Use it now to self-archive. Work on
>DS> improving the software for preservation. It is to be both!

We can certainly agree on that!

Stevan Harnad
Received on Wed Feb 12 2003 - 12:04:26 GMT

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