On February 14, 2002, the Budapest Open Access Initiative was publicly released online with 16 original signatories, formally giving birth to the Open Access movement.
An old tradition and a new technology have converged to make possible an unprecedented public good. The old tradition is the willingness of scientists and scholars to publish the fruits of their research in scholarly journals without payment, for the sake of inquiry and knowledge. The new technology is the internet. The public good they make possible is the world-wide electronic distribution of the peer-reviewed journal literature and completely free and unrestricted access to it by all scientists, scholars, teachers, students, and other curious minds. Removing access barriers to this literature will accelerate research, enrich education, share the learning of the rich with the poor and the poor with the rich, make this literature as useful as it can be, and lay the foundation for uniting humanity in a common intellectual conversation and quest for knowledge.
For various reasons, this kind of free and unrestricted online availability, which we will call open access…
Read the rest of the Initiative here. Happy 10th Anniversary BOAI!