I wanted to reblog this as although I have written about this issue briefly, my analysis is much less detailed than that presented here. I don’t understand all the details of what is proposed by the Finch report but, as far as I can tell, the criticism of it here is pretty much spot on.
This morning, our “enlightened” Government had a bright idea. From April 1st 2013, all science research papers produced using UK taxpayer funding must be published in what’s called “open access” journals. That is, journals that anyone can access, where papers can be downloaded and read for free.
Sounds great. After all, in a democracy and meritocracy like our own, it seems absolutely right that taxpayers should be able to access all the papers we write.
Indeed, we astronomers have been doing this for years. In addition to publishing in refereed, “high impact” journals, we place almost all those papers on a preprint server, which anyone can access, called astro-ph. And we’ve been doing this since the early 1990s. After all, our cousins, the particle physicists, did invent the World Wide Web.
So this Government diktat is to be welcomed. At least, until you think it through. And then you…
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