A Blanket Policy on Open Access
August 3, 2013 10:46 PM   Subscribe

A new open-access policy adopted by the University of California, effective November 1, provides a license to the university system which allows it to publish articles in eScholarship, the system's free online paper repository. Criticism hinges on the policy's seemingly flexible opt-out provision. Ars Technica. Chronicle of Higher Education.
posted by Apropos of Something (8 comments total) 18 users marked this as a favorite
Mike Eisen is right. If the policy has an opt-out, and the journals say "take the opt-out or else we won't publish your stuff", then the policy doesn't mean much in practice.
posted by kersplunk at 2:40 AM on August 4, 2013 [1 favorite]

If the policy has an opt-out, and the journals say "take the opt-out or else we won't publish your stuff"

Doesn't antitrust law apply in that case?
posted by ZenMasterThis at 5:49 AM on August 4, 2013

There are plenty of open-access journals. All you have to do is submit to those.

And all you have to do to make scholars do that is build respect for open-source into hiring, tenure, and promotion decisions. Given the new emphasis on impact, that ought to be easy.
posted by anotherpanacea at 6:14 AM on August 4, 2013

Recent post about the American Historical Association's statement that open access hurts new scholars by making it harder to publish their now-freely-available dissertations, and the reactions to that statement.
posted by mediareport at 2:25 PM on August 4, 2013

mediareport: This policy doesn't apply to dissertations, only peer-reviewed journal articles by tenure track or tenured faculty.

anotherpanacea: My understanding of the policy's intent is to get around the relatively poor rep of open-access journals by essentially forcing top tier journals to choose whether to allow this second publishing outlet or stop accepting articles from authors from the UCs. Of course, so much hinges on the opt-out.
posted by Apropos of Something at 2:34 PM on August 4, 2013

I liked Mike Eisen's link to MIT's list of publishers which do and don't demand profs opt out. The big ones do.

Apropos, the point of the AHA statement was that grad students were having trouble getting articles published in peer-reviewed journals if the dissertation the article was based on was available in an open access database. Seemed relevant enough to link, and the Chronicle of Higher Ed quotes a UC prof saying another important next step is expanding the move "beyond tenure-track faculty members to adjuncts, postdocs, and graduate students."
posted by mediareport at 2:46 PM on August 4, 2013

The new hotness on this front is to say screw it to the open-access journals and just put your post-print PDF on an indexed, searchable "personal archive" service, like SSRN or philpapers. My journal (which has windowed open access) allows this so long as the author does the archiving herself. But the personal archival copy is a pretty big loophole that trumps this opt-out nonsense.
posted by anotherpanacea at 9:07 AM on August 5, 2013

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