WU Libraries has joined with more than 700 institutions and individuals who signed the Statement against Elsevier’s sharing policy.
Here's my short take on this brouhaha:
--Previously Elsevier had a widely-ignored special procedure for institutions with open access requirements. WU has an open access resolution but it is not a requirement nor a rights-based policy like many universities, such as Harvard, MIT, and University of California, have implemented. The new Elsevier sharing policy drops this issue, which is a good thing in my opinion.
--Embargoes are now required on final author manuscript versions shared though institutional repositories, such as Open Scholarship. These embargoes range from 1-4 years and vary by journal. Final author manuscript versions may be shared immediately with no embargo on author websites and 2 specific repositories, ArXiv and RePec. Scholars looking for an article (on Google Scholar for example) do not differentiate; the Internet doesn't differentiate. In this area Elsevier seems illogical (at best) to me. Funder requirements for shorter embargoes will presumably be accommodated in PubMed Central, PAGES and other such mandated repositories.
--All sharing of final author manuscript versions of Elsevier articles will require a CC-BY-NC-ND license. While many authors do prefer fairly restrictive licenses for their own work, some authors put high value on reuse and repurposing. Why not let authors choose?
--WU scholars who want their work to be free-to-read in Open Scholarship, should contact their subject librarians. We are happy to research publisher policies and post the appropriate version, which is usually the final author manuscript version which would usually need to come from an author of the article. Future posts of non-open-access Elsevier articles in Open Scholarship will have an embargo and a CC-BY-NC-ND license applied.
Here are a few links if you want to read more about this still-evolving story:
- Initial press release, April 30: Unleashing the power of academic sharing
- Article sharing / posting policy
- Statement against Elsevier’s sharing policy
- COAR-recting the record - Elsevier's reponse
- Re COAR-recting the record - a response to Elsevier on the Statement against Elsevier’s sharing policy
- Posts from Kevin Smith at Duke which I found helpful: Stepping back from sharing and later A distinction without a difference
- Elsevier’s new sharing policy: A step in the wrong direction, blog post on Confessions of a Science Librarian includes a nice link roundup at the end
- From Chronicle of Higher Education May 29: Universities Yelp as Elsevier Pulls Back on Free Access
- Of course there are MANY more blog posts and comments about this.