EGU Blogs

Open Access button

Every time you publish behind a paywall, a kitten dies.

“Every day, people are denied access to something they have a right to.”

That’s the opening line from a new appeal from students Joe McArthur and David Carroll. Open Access describes a form of publication of research where articles are made instantly available for free, and with unlimited reusability rights, as long as the source is attributed. There are many pseudo-open access ‘definitions’ out there from publishers to obfuscate its use, but this is the only real, least restrictive one.

There has been a global open access movement over the last 10-15 years, which has accelerated so rapidly in the last year or two that many research funders and institutions, as well as government bodies, have developed open access policies. However, despite this progress, large commercial publishers like Wiley, Taylor and Francis, and Elsevier are still the most profitable industry in the world (with margins even higher than Apple), the majority of their profits coming from obscene charges for pdfs and library subscriptions for research articles and journals.

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An interesting step for open access..

If you haven’t heard of it yet, a new tool, the Open Access Button has just launched, coincident with a large open access conference in Berlin. Below is a copy of their press release, the original of which can be found here. In the mean time, check out some of the EGU’s open access journals – there’s quite a decent variety! Also, for those interested, the Finch Committee who kicked off open access policy development in the UK just released a review of their progress, which is worth a peek.

[Begin press release]

November 18, 2013


Students Launch “Button” to Put Denied Access to Research on the Map

BERLIN – Today, at an international meeting of student advocates for expanded access to academic research, two undergraduates from Great Britain announced the highly-anticipated launch of The Open Access Button – a browser-based tool to map the epidemic of denied access to academic research articles, and help users find the research they need.

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