A Not-For-Profit Publisher’s Perspective on Open Access

Recent legislative activity in the US House of Representatives and the UK House of Commons
has added fuel to a debate over electronic access to the Scientific, Technical and Medical (STM)
literature that was initiated in 1999 with the introduction of E-Biomed. On-going efforts to
change the landscape of STM publishing involve moving it away from a subscription basis to an
author-pays model. This article chronicles the swift evolution of electronic access to the
scientific literature and asks whether the scholarly community will really be better off with
government-mandated open access (OA) publishing.

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