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Written by Benjamin Geer

22 August 2009 at 21:01

Why Gold OA is better than Green OA

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Imagine if there was a kind of free software called Green Free Software.  Perhaps would be accessible only to people who paid to subscribe to it.  Authors of patches for the Linux kernel would have to submit them first to Linus Torvalds; if the patch was accepted, the author could then self-archive it in a separate OA source-code repository after an embargo of one year.  There would be many different OA repositories of Linux patches, all containing different patches.  Companies like IBM and Intel, whose employees contribute to Linux, would have OA ‘company repositories’ for their employees’ patches.  Many authors wouldn’t bother doing the extra work to self-archive their patches.  As a result, it would be impossible to get all the latest patches (and hence to get a complete, up-to-date Linux kernel) without paying for a subscription to  In an attempt to solve this problem, some companies would establish ‘mandates’ to require their employees to self-archive in their company’s repsoitory.  Of course these mandates would not affect independent programmers.  Even if the mandates were 100% successful, anyone wishing to assemble a complete kernel would have to download patches from hundreds of different company repositories and combine them together.

Now ask yourself: would that be a better system than the one we have now, where anyone can download the latest complete kernel from for free?

Written by Benjamin Geer

26 July 2009 at 10:56

Posted in Opinion

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Open Journal System

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Open Journal System seems to be the best available free software solution for running a journal. Their demo is quite extensive and allows access to most of its functionality. Culture Machine is an example of an OJ journal in the UK with support for collaborative writing and sharing in academia in general.

My biggest problem with it is that although its peer reviewing options are good for the currently existing model used in academia, it doesn’t seem to be modular enough to allow the kind of open peer reviewing i’ll be proposing to journals. In other words, it maps onto the existing workflow of journals, while what i’m looking for is a web publishing system that will assist in innovating in the models of reviewing and collaboration in general. In addition to reviewing, i believe we need web tools for dynamic, open relationships within editorial collectives, and for changing the idea of printed journal  (more on this is another post).  Feature request is always as option. I’ll write a review of the OJS from the perspective of these open and dynamics models of reviewing, co-editing and publishing that are on my mind as a logical next step in knowledge production.

Written by KontraMraku

21 July 2009 at 11:45

Posted in Web Tools

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