Saturday, November 26, 2005

Open Access Capitalism

There's money to be made in creating digital libraries and in digitizing data as well as creating online journals. Because if there weren't it wouldn't get done. Now that the technology is available and is expanding Internet companies must use it in order to make a profit, and they must find uses for it. Hence open access and the digital library projects. They aren't doing this for the public good like the Guttenberg Project of e-books is . They are doing it to create propriatary online library services which we will have to pay for.

Competing search engines create adin at the library

Amazon to sell digital books on net

This puts them into direct competition with the academic and text book publishing houses, which over price and overcharge for their journals and text books. For the most part these journals do not pay the authors well being that they are peer reviewed for Academic advancement. These journals exist not to pay the authors, while making a profit for the publishers, but as part of the academic publish or perish hegemony. Once you have published enough you hope these guys will hire you to write a textbook or publish your Phd. thesis as a book.

Open access deemed 'dangerous' by Royal Society
The 345-year-old UK science academy fears that a move to Internet publishing proposed by Research Councils UK (RCUK) could lead to the closure of not-for-profit publishers that have sustained the exchange of knowledge since the first peer-reviewed scientific journals were circulated in the 17th century. It also acknowledges that some scientific publishers "appear to be making excessive profits". This is a key complaint made by librarians in recent years, and one that has triggered enthusiasm for the open access concept.

And while a number of electronic or internet journals currently exist, including some peer reviewed journals they are a drop in the bucket compare to print journals. And some of these e-journals are in fact journals about digital mediums for existing academic studies. In other words they are a result of the internet.

Welcome to the Directory of Open Access Journals.
This service covers free, full text, quality controlled scientific and scholarly journals.

And again writers and authors are not paid. Which underlies the fact that intellectual property rights are not so much about protecting producers (aritsts, writers, etc.) as it is about protecting the propriatary interests of publishers and corporations, including online ones.

The Internet is not meeting its potential to globalise science because researchers in developing countries are not getting the access they need, according to an international study.

In countries where telephone and fax machines are relatively recent where clean drinking water is more of a priority than transmission wires, where those wires provide slow and limited access then there is a disparity between the developed world and the developing world in how we access, use and work in cyberspace. And in many cases it is the newly privatized telecoms pushing this internet access as a funding priority over much needed infrastructure such as fresh water wells.

While open access will benefit the growing corporate internet/cyberspace in the develped world it offers little for those in the developing world to meet their needs. Even with better internet access many in the developing world do not have access to high speed computers or DSL connections.This is the classic case of uneven development as applied to cyberspace.high subscription rates for scientific journals are preventing scientists and health workers in poor countries from accessing vital information.

The expansion of capital and uneven development on a world scale
John Weeks, Captial and Class 2001

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