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RE: Monopolies in publishing

Why not multiple copies?

One of the advantages of the electronic medium is that it is very easy to
make multiple copies of an article; of course, this is a disadvantage when
you're trying to control or limit access.

Perhaps there are good reasons to contemplate a multiple-copy model of
publishing.  The author could host their own collected works, if they
wanted to (and why would the author not be able to post the final
peer-reviewed copy?  If copyright is not meant to benefit the creator of
the work, what's the point?), the author's institution could keep a copy
in an institutional repository, and other copies could be part of journals
or aggregate databases.

There could be good reasons for repackaging and selling material that is
also available for free.  For example, by providing metadata, a portal,
usage statistics, and bringing together large numbers of items that people
are likely to want to search together, a vendor would be adding value that
would be worth paying for.

It seems to me that potential advantages of such a model include the
possibility of greater security of access and preservation, as well as a
moderating influence on pricing of commercial alternatives.  That is, I'm
sure people are willing to pay for repackaging for the sake of convenience
- but only to a point.  When the price is too high, people will go to the
effort of finding the freely available copies.

my theory for the day,

Heather Grace Morrison


liblicense-l@lists.yale.edu writes:
>Hmm, I knew I'd regret this :-)
>>>...they are preprints without a journal 'label sown into them', and in
>>>the journals they obviously have this 'label'.  <<
>Methinks you're being just a tad disingenuous here, Jan. The difference
>between these two manifestations of the article isn't just a 'label'. It's
>a label that's been through a process - peer-review This is the key
>difference, I guess - although not the only one. Maybe this is worth
>paying for?
>The only difference between BMC and the vast majority of other publishers
>is who's paying for this. And, as is often pointed out, how much is being
>Terry Hulbert