[Taxacom] access to scientific articles

Donat Agosti agosti at amnh.org
Thu Sep 13 15:29:29 CDT 2007

Though this is mainly geared for US NIH funding, it will have implications
on our domain as well. Just think of the Biodiversity Heritage Library focus
on pre-copyrighted literature because of copyright, and what it means for
having access to real, actual data.





Here is a important message from the American Alliance for Taxpayer Access,
posted in Peter Suber's Open Access News, about the need for US citizens to
contact their senators in order to support the NIH Green OA Self-Archiving
Mandate against the anti-OA publishing

 Time to contact the Senate

An alert from the Alliance for Taxpayer Access:
As the Senate considers Appropriations measures for the 2008 fiscal year
this fall, please take a moment to remind your Senators of your strong
support for public access to publicly funded research and - specifically
ensuring the success of the National Institutes of Health (NIH) Public
Access Policy by making deposit mandatory for researchers. 

Earlier this summer, the House of Representatives passed legislation with
language that directs the NIH to make this change.  The Senate
Appropriations Committee approved a similar measure.  Now, as the
Appropriations process moves forward, it is critically important that our
Senators are reminded of the breadth and depth of support for enhanced
public access to the results of NIH-funded research. Please take a moment to
weigh in with your Senator now. 

Contact information for your Senator is here. Please fax a letter with your
support no later than Friday, September 28, 2007. 

Feel free to draw upon the following talking points:
. American taxpayers are entitled to open access on the Internet to the
peer-reviewed scientific articles on research funded by the U.S. government.
Widespread access to the information contained in these articles is an
essential, inseparable component of our nation's investment in science.
. The Fiscal Year 2008 Labor/HHS Appropriations Bill reported out of
committee contains language directing the National Institutes of Health
(NIH) to change its Public Access Policy so that it requires NIH-funded
researchers to deposit copies of agency-funded research articles into the
National Library of Medicine's online archive.
. Over the more than two years since its implementation, the NIH's current
voluntary policy has failed to achieve any of the agency's stated goals,
attaining a deposit rate of less than 5% by individual researchers. A
mandate is required to ensure deposit in NIH's online archive of articles
describing findings of all research funded by the agency.
. We urge the Senate to support the inclusion of language put forth in the
Labor/HHS Appropriations bill directing the NIH to implement a mandatory
policy and ensuring free, timely access to all research articles stemming
from NIH-funded research without change in any appropriate vehicle.
(We'll be making additional resources for patient advocates - including the
recording of our August 30 Web cast and specific talking points available
shortly as well. Watch the ATA Web site or email me directly for updates.) 

Again, please take a moment to express your support for public access to
research to your Senator as soon as possible and no later than September 28.
As always, we'd appreciate it if you'd let us know of what action you're
able to take, or send a copy your letter to the ATA through (202) 872-0884
(fax). Thank you!

Comments by Peter Suber: 

Publisher associations are lobbying hard against this bill.  For example,
the AAP/PSP launched PRISM, the behemoth Copyright Alliance weighed in, and
Elsevier hired another lobbying firm.  It's critical that we show the Senate
our support for a stronger OA policy at the NIH.  If you're a US citizen,
please contact your Senators and spread the word to others who could do so.

I've omitted the list of Senators with their fax numbers, but it's in the
ATA message if you need it.  For other kinds of contact info for your
Senators (DC office, DC phone, local offices, local phones, email), use
CongressMerge.  Remember to act before September 28!

Peter Suber


Dr. Donat Agosti

Science Consultant

Research Associate, American Museum of Natural History and Naturmuseum der
Burgergemeinde Bern

Email: agosti at amnh.org

Web:  <http://antbase.org/> http://antbase.org

Blog:  <http://biodivcontext.blogspot.com/>

Skype: agostileu

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