California, Illinois, and New York | Gavia Libraria
"Whatever can be said about the three pieces of state-level legislation currently on the table, it can’t be said that they aren’t making waves. The Loon rather thought they’d be treated as yet another artifact of legislative silly-season, something like the nonsense currently being bruited about with respect to nsf grants. Not so. The educational press is taking notice, as are media local to the states in question. That’s… interesting, and not entirely free of cause for concern. Much though the Loon is fond of open access, she’s not sure she likes it as a byproduct of state legislatures throwing their weight around a sector they have relentlessly defunded. Nor will she be pleased if state universities rebel against open access on that basis! This leads to the Loon’s other major concern about these initiatives, now that she’s thought about them a bit. Should any or all of these bills pass, they will represent the first occasion (as far as the Loon knows) of a demand for open access coming from a remote external power. Funder mandates are not remote; for researchers, they’re clear and obvious quid pro quo. Institutional and patchwork mandates are not external; they are products of local shared governance. A state law is different, and different in ways that could turn out rather damaging. The Loon won’t venture a prediction either way—after all, nothing’s passed yet, and the Illinois bill has been substantially defanged—but she hopes the open-access movement is prepared for some ructions should a state bill pass ..."