Udo Schuklenk's Ethx Blog: Open Access a threat to academic freedom?
"It is no secret to people following my academic writings or this blog for that matter: I am no great fan of Open Access. Its low barriers to market entry have led to a proliferation of dodgy OA outfits that by now easily outnumber the decent OA publishers, and there is no end in sight. Beall's List of Predatory Publishers flags the magnitude of the problem at hand. Budding academics and those not quite competitive enough to actually get published in decent journals fall prey to their money making schemes in breathtaking numbers. There's more to be said about the business as well as academic flaws of current OA business models, but that isn't the topic of this blog entry. Recently humanities scholars have woken up to the threat that OA causes to their academic freedom to publish, or so they claim. At the heart of their complaint is this: A whole bunch of research funders insist that the research they fund must be published in an OA journal. Several problems with this: It is probably fair to say that there are only a handful - if that many - decent OA humanities journals out there, and they likely are not in medieval history. If scholars in those disciplines whose work is publicly funded were forced to publish in whatever OA 'journal' (aka webserver) exists in their discipline they would effectively be forced to publish in a location where - really - they would not want to be seen dead..."