(3 October 2016) Thousands of journals have adopted policies that embrace some or all of the Open Access core components related to readership, reuse, copyright, author and automatic posting, and machine readability.
But not all Open Access is created equal.
The “HowOpenIsIt?®” Open Access Spectrum (OAS) guide provides standardized Open Access terminology in an easily understandable, comprehensive resource created by PLOS, the Scholarly Publishing and Academic Resources Coalition (SPARC) and the Open Access Scholarly Publishers Association (OASPA) based on core components of Open Access derived from the 2002 Budapest Open Access Initiative (BOAI).
The OAS guide illustrates a nuanced continuum of more versus less open to enable users to compare and contrast publications and policies across a grid of clearly defined components, moving the conversation from “Is It Open Access?” to “HowOpenIsIt?”
As increasing numbers of hybrid publishing models develop, the challenge lies in clearly understanding where each journal lies on the continuum. To address this, the Open Access Spectrum Evaluation Tool – based on HowOpenIsIt? – provides a quantitative score of a journal’s degree of openness. The OAS evaluation tool, created and updated by a team of scholarly communication and publishing experts including representatives from DOAJ and librarians from the US, Europe and Africa, currently maintains a database of more than 1,000 journals.
The guide is available for download in a number of languages through the work of volunteer translators.
The announcement in full by PLOS is here.