This press release (dated October 1, 2013) about EBSCO Information Services joining the Open Access Scholarly Publishers Association (OASPA) puts their recent affirmative comments regarding open access in a clearer light.
As I wrote in my previous post, EBSCO’s recently released Serials Price Projections for 2014 (September 26, 2013) included “a strong awareness of the evolving impact of open access.” I included the following excerpts from the report:
Although the subscription model is by far the dominant one for purchases of content, there are undeniable indications of change and innovation. For example, publishers of non-predatory open access mega-journals have achieved robust profitability in a few notable cases. …
Some open access advocates would argue that an inflection point is coming soon and that a publishing business model change could be remarkably rapid. …
Open access advocates point to [the continuing trend of publisher consolidation] as further evidence of how the subscription business model is fundamentally broken in its relationship to the academic world and libraries in particular.
In the press release, EBSCO Vice President of Content Licensing and Strategic Partnerships Mike Wallis says, “Becoming a member of OASPA gives EBSCO the opportunity to work even more closely with the OASPA community. We strive to be the most trusted intermediary partner and are devoted to providing value added services and economies of scale to our partners in the scholarly communication arena.”
My colleague’s comment about EBSCO hoping “to be the last package cancelled” will certainly get a boost if they have the foresight to hitch their future as a database aggregator to developments in open access. It has long occurred to me that aspects of discoverability in open access would benefit from top-notch indexing—something EBSCO could provide. EBSCO already provides a fair amount of open access sourced indexing, but too much of this still lands users at the journal level and not to the article itself. I look forward to this improving.
It appears I didn’t have to wait long to, as I concluded in my last post, “listen for EBSCO’s assessments of this evolving space as we move forward.”