I just read about this news this morning (thanks to the wonders of email). The American Anthropological Association recently published its comments to the Request for Information (RFI) from the Office of Science and Technology Policy (OSTP) about the state of affairs when it comes to public access to scholarly publication. All of the responses are here, and the AAA response is #282. That’s right, scroll down and have a look at number two hundred and eighty two. It’s worth it.
But, in case you don’t feel like scrolling right now, how about a couple of nice selections from the AAA response:
We write today to make the case that while we share the mutual objective of enhancing the public understanding of scientific enterprise and support the wide dissemination of materials that can reach those in the public who would benefit from such knowledge (consistent with our association’s mission), broad public access to information currently exists, and no federal government intervention is currently necessary.
We know of no research that demonstrates a problem with the existing system for making the content of scholarly journals available to those who might benefit from it.
Emphasis mine in both cases. Take the time to check out the comments, which you can download as a PDF and share with your friends and colleagues (just an idea). Comments? Thoughts?
Update: Here is the direct link to the PDF of the AAA comment.
Update II: A few reactions from around the web:
Dienekes Pontikos: The American Anthropological Association opposes open science
Michael E. Smith: American Anthropological Association joins the dark side of the force (with appropriate imagery)
Update III: For some background on what’s wrong with the RWA, check out this post by Barbara Fister
Update IV: Kristina Killgrove makes an excellent point about grad students who find themselves outside of the system, here.