CHORUS is a Trojan Horse

Stevan Harnad amsciforum at GMAIL.COM
Fri Jul 11 20:15:15 EDT 2014

On Jul 11, 2014, at 6:34 AM, Stevan Harnad wrote:

a Trojan Horse, designed so that publishers retain control over the timing,
terms and territory of any transition to Open Access.  Think about it.

David Wojick
(in the SSP Scholarly Kitchen):

*DW:* Nonsense! It is the Feds that are asserting control via the US Public
Access program.  CHORUS is an attempt to minimize the damage that more
Federal repositories like PMC will cause. CHORUS will improve scientific
communication while reducing
Federal expenses. It is an elegant solution to a difficult problem.

*SH:* The Feds are (rightly) asserting control over the research output
that the public funds by mandating public access to it. Doesn’t sound like
nonsense to me. (Some) publishers are trying to slow the provision of
public access to publicly funded research (by embargoing it) and are
angling to remain the ones who provide the access, so that they retain
control and proprietorship over both the research output and the provision
of access to it. That doesn’t sound like nonsense to me either — just
self-interest in a profound conflict of interest
between those who fund, conduct and provide the research output (the Feds,
the public, and researchers) on the one hand, and those who manage the peer
review of that research output (publishers). The peers (researchers) review
for free. It is not nonsense to attempt to hold onto a cushy deal
by “minimizing the damage” for as long as possible to the inflated income
streams  to which they have long grown accustomed. The Feds, the public,
and researchers can only hope  that this damage-limitation attempt will
fail. And it will -- though perhaps not until after yet  another round of
delay tactics, of which CHORUS and the lobbying for it are a prominent

*Stevan Harnad*
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