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Re: AAUP Statement on Open Access

Well, I think the AAUP statement says a bit more than I previewed in this forum, but I won't argue the point with Stevan. That there is substantial similarity is no surprise because I was the principal drafter of the AAUP statement, and I was "test driving" some of its arguments in this forum.

One point that was NOT included in the final AAUP statement, though it was included in an earlier, draft, was the argument about the "tipping point" that I had with you, Stevan. This will be part of a longer version of the AAUP statement that will appear as an article under my name in the July issue of Learned Publishing. That version has extensive footnotes as well as other material that was too detailed to be included in the programmatic AAUP statement.

There is no intention, in the AAUP statement, of "holding back" OA self-archiving of journal articles. We in the AAUP wanted to get across the point, however, that inasmuch as knowledge is seamless, it is important not to let a new "digital divide" open up between the knowledge made available through journals and the knowledge made available through books. So we are encouraging everyone not to forget that open access potentially applies to books as well.

Of course, the potential harmfulness of this looming "digital divide" is probably a great deal more important in the humanities and social sciences than in the sciences, where books tend to play a different role in the generation and dispersal of new knowledge.

Sandy Thatcher
Pennsylvania State University Press

The AAUP Statement on Open Access says nothing more than what was
already said in this Forum by Sandy Thatcher of AAUP: Some
similar questions arise with monographs.


But the primary target of the OA movement is peer-reviewed
journal articles, which are all author give-aways, written only
for usage and impact, not for fees or royalties.

Not so for all (or even most) monographs.

And a monograph is a much bigger cost and investment for the
publisher than a journal articles.

Hence, though analogies there may be, on no account should the
straightforward momentum of OA self-archiving (of articles) be
held back by linking it with the complicated question of OA

And researchers' funders and employers can and should (and will)
mandate the OA self-archiving of all their fundees'/employees'
articles, but they certainly can't wont' and shouldn't mandate
that all their fundees'/employees' *books* must be self-archived!

Stevan Harnad

PS: Let's wait till we have safely mandated 100% Green OA for all
articles, and then let's worry about books, Gold OA publishing,
peer-review reform, copyright reform, and all those other good
things. Let's stop letting them continue to hold OA back from the
optimal and inevitable.