Six Proposals for Freeing the Refereed Literature Online: A Comparison

Harnad, Stevan (2001) Six Proposals for Freeing the Refereed Literature Online: A Comparison. [Journal (On-line/Unpaginated)]

Full text available as:

[img] HTML


Currently there are six candidate strategies for freeing the refereed research literature: (1) Authors paying journal publishers for publisher-supplied online-offprints. (2) Asking journals to give away their contents online for free and boycotting those that do not. (3) Library consortial support (e.g. SPARC) for lower-priced journals. (4) Delayed journal give-aways -- 6-to-12+ months after publication. (5) Giving up established journals and peer review altogether, in favour of self-archived preprints and post-hoc, ad-lib commentary. (6) Self-archiving all preprints and postprints. (1) - (5) all require waiting for policy changes and, even once these are available, all require a needless sacrifice on the part of authors. With (1) the sacrifice is the needless author offprint expense, with (2) it is the author's right to submit to their preferred journals, with (3) it is (as before) the author's potential impact on those potential users who cannot afford even the lowered access tolls, with (4) it is the impact of the all-important first 6-12 months after publication, and with (5) the sacrifice is the quality of the literature itself. Only (6) asks researchers for no sacrifices at all, and no waiting for any change in journal policy or price. The only delay factor has been authors' own relative sluggishness in just going ahead and doing it! Nevertheless, (6) is well ahead of the other 5 candidates, in terms of the total number of papers thus freed already, thanks to the lead taken by the physicists.

Item Type:Journal (On-line/Unpaginated)
Keywords:electronic publishing, peer review, self-archiving, copyright
Subjects:Electronic Publishing > Archives
ID Code:1702
Deposited By: Harnad, Stevan
Deposited On:18 Jul 2001
Last Modified:11 Mar 2011 08:54

References in Article

Select the SEEK icon to attempt to find the referenced article. If it does not appear to be in cogprints you will be forwarded to the paracite service. Poorly formated references will probably not work.

Roberts et al., Building A "GenBank" of the Published Literature at at Central at Harnad, How and Why To Free All Refereed Research From Access- and Impact-Barriers Online, Now, at Harnad, The Self-Archiving Initiative Freeing the refereed research literature online at Eprint Archives at et al.'s article, Science's Response: Is a Government Archive the Best Option? at Harnad, AAAS's Response: Too Little, Too Late at Web debates - Future e-access to the primary literature at - The Scholarly Publishing and Academic Resources Coalition at, S. (2000) Ingelfinger Over-Ruled: The Role of the Web in the Future of Refereed Medical Journal Publishing, Lancet Perspectives 256 (December Supplement): s16. at Nature Web debates - Authors willing to pay for instant web access at e-Print archive at Magazine - Is a Government Archive the Best Option? at concrete proposal for an automatically refereed scholarly electronic journal at FaQs for Overcoming Zeno's Paralysis, "I worry about self-archiving because..." at (2001). A complete archive of the ongoing discussion of freeing access to the refereed journal literature online is available at the American Scientist September Forum at, S. (2001) For Whom the Gate Tolls? How and Why to Free the Refereed Research Literature Online Through Author/Institution Self-Archiving, Now. at Science Magazine - Building A "GenBank" of the Published Literature at England Journal of Medicine at, S. (2000) E-Knowledge: Freeing the Refereed Journal Corpus Online. Computer Law & Security Report 16(2) 78-87. [Rebuttal to Bloom Editorial in Science and Relman Editorial in New England Journalof Medicine]. Harnad, S. (1998/2000) The invisible hand of peer review. Nature [online] (5 Nov. 1998)


Repository Staff Only: item control page