I’ve already briefly mentioned initiatives in the past year to try to restrict access to tax-payed funded research. I’d like to bring to your attention a new bill, called the Federal Research Public Access Act, seeks to establish embargo limits and require that the proceedings from all tax-payer funded research is available to all people.
The following statement comes from the blog Why Evolution Is True:
As I’ve pointed out before, there are lots of holes in new initiatives to force academics to make their research (particularly that funded by taxpaying citizens) accessible to the public. Some “open access” journals don’t release the data for a year (an enternity in the fast-moving world of, say, molecular biology), while some universities allow faculty an “out” so they can publish in “closed access” journals like Science and Nature. Well, there’s a new pending bill (and a citizens’ petition) to reduce the waiting time to 6 months maximum and improve access in other ways.
You can see and sign the petition, which apparently will be going to President Obama, here. You have to create an account, but that involves giving only your name, email address, and zip code, and a brief wait until you get an email verifying the account. This site says that as of today they need only 2300 signatures to reach the goal of 25,000. I’ve signed, and urge you to consider signing, too, particularly if you use or want to look at scientific articles.