[Taxacom] Paywall our taxonomic tidbit
stephen_thorpe at yahoo.co.nz
Sun Jan 17 19:49:43 CST 2016
Groups of amateurs, generally speaking, want field guides and things, not primary taxonomic literature, and even then only for a few selected taxa. A field guide to avian lice, for example, is unlikely to make the New York Bestsellers List!
>I don't give a damn about the copyright issue, though, and gladly download things I have access to and send to people who want or need it, whether or not I've ever been involved in the production of that paper at any stage, and will continue doing so as long as I am affiliated with a university<
Ever heard of Aaron Swartz?
As I keep saying, the issues here are very complex.
On Mon, 18/1/16, Daniel Leo Gustafsson <kotatsu.no.leo at gmail.com> wrote:
Subject: Re: [Taxacom] Paywall our taxonomic tidbit
To: "Stephen Thorpe" <stephen_thorpe at yahoo.co.nz>
Cc: "taxacom at mailman.nhm.ku.edu" <taxacom at mailman.nhm.ku.edu>, "Fred Schueler" <bckcdb at istar.ca>
Received: Monday, 18 January, 2016, 2:37 PM
Given how many groups of amateurs
interested in insects I am part of (facebook and elsewhere),
and how many bird/butterfly/dragonfly/whatever-watchers I
know offline who are indeed very interested in obtaining
published taxonomic papers for this or that group (sadly
VERY few people I know are interested in lice...), I do
agree with the face-value of "the public has the right
to free access to the results of research funded by the
public purse". Evidently my assessment of how much in
demand taxonomic papers (especially revisions) are differs
substantially from yours.
I don't give a damn about the copyright
issue, though, and gladly download things I have access to
and send to people who want or need it, whether or not
I've ever been involved in the production of that paper
at any stage, and will continue doing so as long as I am
affiliated with a university. That is a non-issue to me.
Things like scratchpads and the various paleontological
initiatives I've seen are phenomenal for this, achieving
precisely the results I want (the people who want the papers
or data get the papers or data) without anyone having to pay
the publishing companies more than library fees and whatever
else is necessary to keep them afloat (I don't think
I've ever paid for open access, and don't intend to
either, as anything I publish becomes open access on the
So yeah, in general I suppose I both
agree and disagree with you. I am all for open access, but
will not pay for it. I will just do what I can to realise
the ideal of open access whether this is in the interest of
the publisher or not. Obviously they can survive without
being paid for open access, so any claim that they need to
be reimbursed for publishing something open access is bogus
from the outset.
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