Peter Suber’s response to PRISM’s press release

August 24, 2007 at 8:31 am | Posted in Uncategorized | Comments Off on Peter Suber’s response to PRISM’s press release

Peter Suber, Open Access News: A superb riposte to the press release issued by the Partnership for Research Integrity in Science & Medicine

“The free market of scholarly publishing is responsive to the needs of scholars and scientists and balances the interests of all stakeholders.” Calling the current system a “free market” is also a distortion. (So is the claim that it balances the interests of all stakeholders, but I’ll leave that to one side here.) Most scientific research is funded by taxpayers. Most researcher salaries are paid by taxpayers. Most TA journal subscriptions are paid by taxpayers. And publishers receive both the articles and the referee reports as donations from authors and referees. Publishers don’t actually say that government money and policymaking should keep out of this sector, because that would really undermine their revenue. What they want is government intervention in all these areas except public access to publicly-funded research. What they want is the present arrangement of government subsidies for the work they publish, government subsidies for their own subscription fees, volunteer labor from authors and peer reviewers, double-payments from taxpayers who want access —and the label “free market” to wrap it all up in.

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