Debunking Open Access Myths

December 5th, 2006 by Kaitlin Thaney

In a post on Open Access Now, BioMed Central responds to some of the most common – and most misleading – arguments against Open Access. These contentions were presented to the House of Commons Science and Technology Committee Inquiry into Scientific Publications in 2004.

BioMed Central, the “Open Access Publisher”, debunks 11 of the most prevalent myths fueling the anti-Open Access mindset. There well-crafted responses shed some light on some common misconceptions to the relatively “new” open model.

The myths, in the order presented on the Web site, are as follows:

– 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 (approximately $19,368-$58,104 USD) 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

To read the positions in support of these myths as well as against, click here.

One Response

  1. Abi, on February 3rd, 2007 at 6:49 am

    Awesome, man