Springer's Already on the Side of the Angels: What's the Big Deal?
The Association of Universities in the Netherlands (VSNU) has made a deal with Springer that articles by VSNU authors will be made OA. But Springer is already on the side of the angels on OA, being completely Green on immediate, unembargoed author OA self-archiving. Hence all VSNU authors are already free to deposit their refereed final drafts of their Springer articles in their institutional repositories, without requiring any further permission or payment. So what in addition is meant by the VSNU deal with Springer? that the Springer PDF rather than the author's final draft can be deposited? That Springer does the deposit on VSNU authors' behalf? Or is this a deal for prepaid hybrid Gold OA? In the case of Springer articles, it seems that what the Netherlands lacked was not the right to make them OA, but the mandate (from the VSNU universities and Netherlands' research funders like NWO) to make them OA. There are some signs, however, that this too might be on the way...
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