Highlights from International Open Access Week 2009 From the Announcement: The first International Open Access Week (October 19 23) may have just come to a close, but the broad spectrum of initiatives that it showcased ensures that Open Access to research will play a central role in advancing the conduct of research and scholarship for years to come. Events took place on more than 300 higher education, research, and other sites worldwide, illustrating the dramatic growth of the global network that has emerged in support of Open Access. The post goes on to highlight five key events from International Open Access Week. Youll read about and find related links to: + The establishment of new access policies at agencies and research institutes. + The adoption of campus-based open-access policies. + The release of extensive research on the economic and social impact of Open Access. + The commitment of significant new funds to support open-access publication. + A groundswell of support by college and university students. Source: SPARC (Scholarly Publishing and Academic Resources Coalition)
"Interesting article in Library Journal ... 1st paragraph here for more wander over to LJ" -- HSM
The Accessibility Paradox -- Library Journal, 10/29/2009
The book world has been harrumphing about a battle among big box stores to sell the season's biggest books at the cheapest price. In order to draw customer into their stores, Target and Wal-Mart are making ten bestselling author's books available for under ten bucks. (Wisconsin is missing all the excitementthey have a law against dumping goods below wholesale prices but Amazon has joined in the fray, so Wisconsinites can still go online and pre-order bestsellers at low-low prices.) The American Booksellers Association has even asked the Department of Justice to intervene. I'm somewhat bemused to see a Barbara Kingsolver book among the discounted booksattention shoppers! Critique of corporate greed and US imperialism on sale in aisle three! But I'm also taken aback by the horrified response of the book industry. I thought the big crisis was that nobody reads. Now it turns out the problem is that books are so popular with the masses they're being used as bait to draw in shoppers. Come on, guys, get your story straight! Which is it?
Med students hoist P2P Jolly Roger to get access to papers A study provides evidence that file sharing takes place with some very specialized media: the research papers published in scientific journals. By John Timmer | Last updated October 29, 2009 6:15 AM CT
The ease with which information can be spread through the Internet has exacerbated tensions among those who pay for, conduct, and publish scientific research. Many journals still require subscription or per-article payments for access to the research they publish, which often leaves the public, who funds a significant percentage of the research, on the wrong side of a pay wall. So far, however, there's been little evidence that the public has been interested enough in research to engage in the sort of widespread file-sharing that plague other content industries. But a new study suggests that may just be because nobody's looked very carefully.
The study, which was spotted by TechDirt, appears in an open-access journal, so anyone can read its entire contents. It describes the sharing of over 5,000 research papers on a site frequented by medical professionals, and the formal community rules that governed the exchange.
During the six months in 2008 that the author tracked the activity on the site, which was a discussion board focused on medical fields, it had over 125,000 registered users. Anyone could start an account, but many of the fora were focused on specific issues, such as those faced by nurses and residents. In addition to those, however, there was a section called the Electronic Library that contained a forum called "Databases & Journals—Requests and Enquiries."
Up to three times a day, users were allowed to submit a request for a published research article, accompanied by a link to the free abstract hosted at the journal's website. Other users would then download the full article and host it somewhere, providing a link in the discussion. If everything was set up properly, the site would track the number of downloads.
Over the course of six months, over 6,500 articles were requested, and over 80 percent of those requests were successfully filled. The articles received a mean of 4.47 views, with one attracting 177 downloads. The author found that the requests roughly paralleled the journal's impact factors, with Nature and Science coming out on top, followed by more specialized medical journals. Figuring an average cost of $30 a download (the price requested by many journals), the publishing industry was potentially losing $1.4 million a year due to the site, although it's unlikely that many of the downloaders would have actually exercised their option to buy an article.
According to the author, the site (which is never named) went inactive in early 2009, although its contents were indexed via Google prior to that point.
The author considers this behavior in the context of the Open Access debate, which has played out in Congress and research institutions. He also terms the file sharing behavior among people involved in the medical profession "ethically dubious," given it involves the distribution of copyrighted material.
There is, however, an alternate way of viewing this that the author doesn't discuss: at least some medical professionals are apparently unable to obtain the publications they feel are needed for their training or practice; given their job responsibilities, it seems unethical to withhold these materials.
In addition, it's worth noting that, although this sort of informal sharing would be obviated if all research was open access, it has a very different history from the formal open access movement. For many years, it was traditional for anyone publishing a paper to order a stack of what were termed "reprints"—essentially the journal article without the rest of the journal's contents—from the publisher, in order to share with colleagues or anyone who was interested, but did not have access to the journal. With the advent of digital publishing, this sort of service shifted to the emailing of PDFs—in a lot of ways, the file sharing seen here could be viewed as the next logical step in this publication sharing process.
In any case, the amount of sharing that goes on is undoubtedly much larger than the file exchanges observed in the study. Many authors are now choosing to simply place articles where anyone can find them, either ahead of print at places like the arXiv, or after, on their university's servers. Offers to share paywalled articles also occur in public forums that aren't dedicated to this exchange, at least based on some of the comments attached to Ars' science articles.
Many publishers are readily adapting to and, in some cases, embracing the increased demands for public access to research results. But there remain a number who are resisting the trend. The study suggests that publishers might do well to adopt some sort of formalized access system, or they may end up facing a growth in the sites that encourage the same sort of sharing that has caused the movie and film industries so much indigestion.
The Internet Journal of Medical Informatics, 2009. DOI unavailable.
Open-access SPIE Reviews journal to launch in mid-2009 with focus on emerging topics in optics and photonics
December 12, 2008 -- SPIE announced today the launch in mid-2009 of the new open-access journal SPIE Reviews under the editorship of William T. Rhodes. The new journal will publish original, in-depth review articles on emerging and evolving fields in applied optics and photonics of use to researchers as well as industry innovators.
"Articles will serve both as valuable overviews of significant new technologies and as portals to the primary literature in those areas for practitioners, researchers, and students." Dr. Rhodes said. "The optics community has long needed a good journal of review articles. I am extremely pleased that SPIE is launching this new publication, and doubly pleased because it comes at no cost to readers or authors." Rhodes is a professor of electrical engineering and Associate Director of the Imaging Technology Center at Florida Atlantic University, and Emeritus Professor at Georgia Institute of Technology.
As editor, Rhodes will be assisted by a broadly interdisciplinary editorial board that will provide the expertise needed to ensure that SPIE Reviews covers the full range of topics important to SPIE constituents.
SPIE Reviews will be available as an open-access publication in the SPIE Digital Library, the world's largest collection of optics literature. Articles in the SPIE Digital Library incorporate features such as extensive CrossRef-linked bibliographies, multimedia, bookmarking tools, and RSS feeds. In addition to these features, SPIE Reviews will feature links to related resources such as book chapters. SPIE Reviews joins the open-access SPIE Letters virtual journal as an additional open-access offering in the SPIE Digital Library, which also includes articles available by subscription or pay-per-view from SPIE's other six journals and the Proceedings of SPIE.
"SPIE Reviews will offer timely insights on emerging technologies of benefit to researchers and students, while also providing industry managers with overviews of developing fields and a front-view perspective on technology trends," said CEO Eugene Arthurs.
SPIE Reviews' open-access status will ensure its availability to researchers in developing countries and in schools with limited access to primary research journals, Arthurs noted. "This supports SPIE's mission to advance devierse new technologies throughout the world."
Articles will be invited by members of the editorial board and the editor. Proposals from prospective authors also will be considered by the editor. Proposals and inquiries may be sent to email@example.com. Additional information on SPIE Reviews is available at www.spie.org/reviews.
The Canadian Association of Research Libraries (CARL) becomes a founding member of the Confederation of Open Access Repositories (COAR)
October 21, 2009
The Canadian Association of Research Libraries (CARL) became a founding member of the Confederation of Open Access Repositories (COAR). COAR is an international association of organizations and individuals that have a common strategic interest in open access to scholarly communication. COAR was formed out of a need to work together at the international level to promote greater visibility and application of research outputs through global networks of open access digital repositories.
Hardin News» Blog Archive » Open Access Publishing in the Health Sciences- The University of Iowa Libraries
Editor’s Note: Throughout Open Access Week (Oct 19-23), the UI Libraries will be sharing the views of our UI colleagues on the topic of open access.
by Dr. William Sivitz, Professor of Internal Medicine
I recently published an article in PlosOne (Mitochondrial Targeted Coenzyme Q, Superoxide, and Fuel Selectivity in Endothelial Cells by Brian D. Fink, Yunxia O’Malley, Brian L. Dake, Nicolette C. Ross, Thomas E. Prisinzano, and William I. Sivitz). I found the process straightforward and faster than most other journals. The peer review was thorough but fair. I hope to see this used more frequently.
by Dr. Michael Knudson, Association Professor of Pathology
We published in Plos One and found it a very satisfying experience. Quick, insightful reviews, no charge for color figures and no copyright forms to sign.
The journal allows readers to provide feedback and ratings of each article. I would recommend Open Access to all.
Sorry -- had numerous work related issues which were so unforeseen that I had to drop everything to get done.
None related to open access -- but I am back.... So....
Thanks for understanding.....Stephen
About OA week
October 19-23 will mark the first international Open Access Week.
Open Access Week is an opportunity to broaden awareness and understanding of Open Access to research, including access policies from all types of research funders, within the international higher education community and the general public. The now-annual event has been expanded from a single day to accommodate widespread global interest in the movement toward open, public access to scholarly research results.
Open Access Week builds on the momentum started by the student-led national day of action in 2007 and carried by the 120 campuses in 27 countries that celebrated Open Access Day in 2008. 2008 organizers SPARC (the Scholarly Publishing & Academic Resources Coalition), the PLoS (The Public Library of Science), and Students for FreeCulture welcome new key contributors for 2009: OASIS (the Open Access Scholarly Information Sourcebook); Open Access Directory (OAD); and eIFL.net (Electronic Information for Libraries), which will again spearhead events in developing and transitional countries.
There are also partner organizations that are engaging their communities in every corner of the globe and these are listed on the main page of this site (SPARC Europe, SPARC Japan, DOAJ and BIREME). If you want join them and help get the word out please contact firstname.lastname@example.org.
This year, the organizers will highlight a growing suite of educational resources that local hosts can use to design their own programs on Open Access, for their respective audiences and time zones. The OASIS project features the resources for researchers, administrators, librarians, students, and the public — as well as different OA awareness levels — that will be the centerpiece of the 2009 Open Access Week program.
These audience-specific resource lists will be supplemented by the growing clearinghouse of educational materials available through the Open Access Directory, which will again serve as the key index for participating campuses and organizations on five continents. Through the collaborative functionality of the two initiatives, videos, briefing papers, podcasts, slideshows, posters and other educational tools will be drawn from all over the Web to be featured during Open Access Week 2009.
The organizers will also work with registered participants to develop a variety of sample program tracks, such as “Administrators’ introduction to campus open-access policies and funds,” “OA 101,” and “Complying with the NIH public access policy” that take full advantage of available tools. Scholars, students, libraries, publishers, individuals, and campuses everywhere are invited to adapt these resources as needed and to mark Open Access Week by hosting an event, distributing literature, blogging, or wearing an Open Access t-shirt.
“After the success of last year’s Open Access Day, we’re delighted to be co-organizing the first ever Open Access Week with our fellow collaborators, again in conjunction with the anniversary of one of our flagship journals,” said Peter Jerram, CEO for the Public Library of Science. “We would ask our supporters to celebrate the fifth anniversary of PLoS Medicine by spreading the word about Open Access and getting involved in the week.”
“There’s no more certain sign of the momentum behind Open Access to research than an annual, global celebration of this scale,” added Heather Joseph, Executive Director of SPARC. “Occasions like this are the best possible way to attract attention from busy faculty members and administrators. It’s SPARC’s pleasure to be working with our partners to realize the event once again this year.”
Read a Press Release about Open Access Week 2009.