Paying for information about paying for information (or not)

JSP_coverHeated debates continue regarding the thorny question of ‘Open Access’ to academic journals. Some (e.g. the publishers) argue that it’s financially unsustainable to give free access –  while others (e.g. unpaid authors) assert that the forefront of knowledge is not something that should be traded as a commercial commodity. One place where scholarly discussion about publishing in academic journals takes place is within the pages of the Journal of Scholarly Publishing. And a paper focussing on the subject of ‘Open Access’ features in Volume 43, Number 4 / July 2012. It’s entitled : ‘Giving It Away: Sharing and the Future of Scholarly Communication’ (by Professor Kathleen Fitzpatrick, Director of Scholarly Communication, Modern Language Association; Professor of Media Studies [on leave], Pomona College). You can buy it here for US$13.00.
Alternatively, if you’re inclined not to pay the University of Toronto Press US$13.00, you can find a substantial presentation about ‘Giving It Away: Sharing and the Future of Scholarly Communication’ via professor Fitzpatrick’s blog, Planned Obsolescence.

AN ASIDE: The blog is titled after the professor’s book of the same name – available here from New York University Press, US$23 paper bound, or US$79 cloth bound.  The inventor of the concept of ‘Planned Obsolescence’ is widely regarded to be Bernard London, whose 1932 pamphlet ‘Ending the Depression Through Planned Obsolescence’ can be read in full here, without charge – it’s now out of copyright.