Publishers invent a whole new form of evil: suing their customers 2012-08-20


“I know that I’ve tended to be very critical of Elsevier on these pages [peer review, economics, PLoS clone, RWA, profits].  I’ve sometimes wondered whether that’s really fair... I’m not alone in this, of course.  For example, Tyler Neylon’s bare-bones site The Cost Of Knowledge... is a call to boycott Elsevier in particular... So why Elsevier?... As well as the restrictive copyrights, predatory pricing and obligatory bundling that are so ubiquitous, Elsevier is also responsible for the six fake journals that misrepresented sponsored content as legitimate research, involvement in the arms trade, repeated obstruction to the re-use of data, making campaign contributions to representatives to propose the Research Works Act and then feeding those representatives the very words they want them to say in support of it. But a couple of days ago I learned of yet another reason why my attempts to be gentle and kind to Elsevier are doomed.  It’s not been widely publicised yet, because the reporting has been in German, but Elsevier are now filing lawsuits against their own customers... here is a report in the well respected German-language Swiss newspaper Neue Zürcher Zeitung.  Google’s automatic translation is pretty good, but David Marjanovic kindly provided this better translation of the key passage: ‘Almost at the same time, on 19 December 2011, the science publishers Elsevier, Thieme and Springer filed a suit with the Zurich Commercial Court, which is intended to forbid the ETH library [“The ETH-Bibliothek is the largest scientific library in Switzerland and one of the leading scientific and technical libraries in Europe. It is open to the public.”] to continue its document delivery service in its present form. Through this service clients of the ETH library can request the electronic delivery of articles from scientific journals... By their suit, the science publishers want to subvert a provision of Swiss copyright law that explicitly allows the copying of excerpts from periodicals. In comparison e.g. to the situation in Germany, where such copies are forbidden, this provision is an unambiguous advantage for Switzerland as a science site...’”



08/16/2012, 06:08

From feeds:

Open Access Tracking Project (OATP) »

Tags: oa.business_models oa.publishers oa.comment oa.usa oa.legislation oa.negative oa.rwa oa.nih oa.advocacy oa.signatures oa.petitions oa.boycotts oa.elsevier oa.copyright oa.libraries oa.switzerland



Date tagged:

08/20/2012, 15:18

Date published:

02/01/2012, 15:07