From: "Guédon Jean-Claude" <[log in to unmask]>
Date: Thu, 27 Jun 2013 03:20:11 -0400
While some publishers may have been characterized as "being on the
side of angels" because they allowed some form of self-archiving, the
publishers' strategy has always been very clear: create as complicated
and confusing a landscape as possible while avoiding any direct
confrontation that would allow for the emergence of clear issues. The
confusion to be created is easy to generate: in the name of free
competition, let each publisher do as it pleases. Nowadays, this basic
laissez-faire policy has been further enriched (or "improved" as the
case may be), by generating policy drifts. The Springer example is but
one example of all this.
The point of it all is simple: defang the repository device as much as
possible while taking ownership of the Gold road by assimilating it to
the "author-pay" model.
If that is still being on the side of angels, then our entry into
paradise is pretty well assured: anything goes...
PS The murky negotiating approach that avoids clear, black and white,
choices is very visible in other arenas - for example that of rights
that could be extended by publishers to people with impaired vision.
This issue is presently debated in WIPO.
Similar tactics have also been used in other economic areas, for
example by pharmaceutical companies with regard to generic drugs and
patenting. When the question of the common good comes dangerously
close, these companies know they should appear to stay "on the side of
angels" as long and as much as possible by using all the resources of
ambiguity and obfuscation. It is all performed in the name of free
enterprise and market "laws".
Université de Montréal
From: Richard Poynder <[log in to unmask]>
Date: Wed, 26 Jun 2013 13:49:32 +0100
Last month Danny Kingsley - Manager for Scholarly Communications &
ePublishing at the Australian National University (ANU) - highlighted
a number of publishers that have recently changed their self-archiving
(Green OA) policies.
Amongst the publishers named by Kingsley was Springer - the world's
second-largest journal publisher - which changed its self-archiving
policy earlier this year.
While Springer had previously insisted that where a funder required
papers to be deposited in a central repository like PubMed Central
this could only be done after a 12-month embargo, it allowed authors
to post their papers in institutional repositories immediately. Under
the new policy, however, the 12-month embargo has been extended to
cover papers posted in institutional repositories as well. (Although
authors can still post copies of their accepted manuscripts on their
personal web sites without embargo).
Kingsley concluded that the change was likely a response to the new UK
OA policy introduced by Research Councils UK (RCUK) on April 1st.
Elsewhere, OA advocate Stevan Harnad has described the change as
"Springer Silliness", and a Springer author has expressed "confusion"
over what the policy actually means.
In the hope of clarifying matters I sent a list of questions to
Springer. I have now published the answers to those questions, and
they can be read here: