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(Mis)Leading Open Access Myths - BioMed Central Responds

:: As previously reported, the Science and Technology Committee of the UK Parliament is conducting an inquiry into scientific publications. BioMed Central is providing coverage of the inquiry on their new Open Access now website. The site includes BioMed Central's submissions to the inquiry, but also links to the other submissions, including those from Elsevier, Blackwell Publishing, Oxford UP, among others, and - wait for it - the American Association of Law Libraries, American Library Association, Association of Academic Health Sciences Libraries, Association of College & Research Libraries, Association of Research Libraries, Medical Library Association, Public Knowledge, and the Scholarly Publication and Academic Resources Coalition. (Gee, where was SLA on this one??)

This week, BioMed Central released (Mis)Leading Open Access Myths, in response to what it describes as "some of the most prevalent and
most misleading anti-Open Access arguments." The document discusses the following in detail:

  • Myth 1. The cost of providing Open Access will reduce the
    availability of funding for research
  • Myth 2. Access is not a problem virtually all UK researchers have
    the access they need
  • Myth 3. The public can get any article they want from the public
    library via interlibrary loan
  • Myth 4. Patients would be confused if they were to have free access
    to the peer-reviewed medical literature on the web
  • Myth 5. It is not fair that industry will benefit from Open Access
  • Myth 6. Open Access threatens scientific integrity due to a conflict of
    interest resulting from charging authors
  • Myth 7. Poor countries already have free access to the biomedical
    literature
  • Myth 8. Traditionally published content is more accessible than Open
    Access content as it is available in printed form
  • Myth 9. A high quality journal such as Nature would need to charge
    authors 10,000-30,000 in order to move to an Open Access
    model
  • Myth 10. Publishers need to make huge profits in order to fund
    innovation
  • Myth 11. Publishers need to take copyright to protect the integrity of
    scientific articles
Via George Porter.

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