bjoern.brembs.blog » Providing recommendations for Plan S implementation
peter.suber's bookmarks 2019-01-17
"The document is very clear and I support the principles behind it. The only major issue left unaddressed is the real threat of universal APC-based OA as a potential outcome. This unintended consequence is particularly pernicious, because it would merely change the accessibility of the literature (which currently is not even a major issue, hence the many Big Deal cancellations world-wide), leaving all other factors untouched. A consequence of universal APC-OA is that monetary inequity would be added to a scholarly infrastructure that is already rife with replication issues, other inequities and a dearth of digital functionalities. Moreover, the available evidence suggests that authors’ publishing strategy takes prestige and other factors more into account than cost, explaining the observation of already rising APCs. A price cap is de facto unenforceable, as authors pay any price above the cap, if they deem the cost worth the benefit. Here in Germany, it has become routine in the last decade, to pay any APC above the 2000€ cap imposed by the DFG from other sources. Hence, APCs have risen also in Germany unimpeded in the last ten years. A switch away from journal-based evaluations as intended by DORA also would lead to a change in authors’ publication strategy only after hardly any evaluations were conducted by journal rank any more, a time point decades in the future, given the current ubiquitous use of journal rank, despite decades of arguing against the practice. Thus, the currently available evidence suggests that a switch to universal APC-based OA, all else remaining equal, would likely lead to the unintended consequence of massively deteriorating the current status quo, in particular at the expense of the most vulnerable scholars and to the benefit of the already successful players. Therefore, rather than pushing access to only the literature (not a major problem any more) at all costs, universal APC-based OA needs to be avoided at all costs...."