Q&A: Knowledge liberator : Nature : Nature Publishing Group
peter.suber's bookmarks 2013-03-27
An interview with Robert Darnton. Excerpt: "[A:] ...In 2005 Google was faced with a lawsuit from authors and publishers claiming copyright infringement. After three years of negotiations, they came back with a settlement for a commercial library. Google would split the profits with copyright owners, leaving libraries to buy back digital subscriptions to their own books. In 2011, a federal court declared the settlement unacceptable. Now Google has a great digital database of books, which it can use in cooperation with publishers to sell books, but in my view it’s not creating the kind of library that was promised. [Q:] So you’re launching a public alternative? [A:] Along with research libraries, archives and museums throughout the country, Harvard is supporting the non-profit Digital Public Library of America (DPLA)....[Q:] What is Harvard doing to fix it? [A:] The Harvard faculty has decided that the price increases are unsustainable. We have 73 libraries and each must limit the haemorrhage of funds. In April 2012, a faculty council asked faculty and students to consider not contributing to journals that charge outrageous prices. But voluntary effort alone won’t solve the problem. We’ve created a repository where all Harvard professors by default must deposit their articles, although they can opt out, and the traffic from around the world is astonishing. The university will pay most of the processing fees for articles submitted to open-access journals such as those of the Public Library of Science. By working with other universities, we hope to make most journals open-access and eventually to change the economics of journal publishing. Open-access journals get more hits than closed ones. This is where the future lies."