Tutorial 19a: Open Access Definitions And Clarifications, Part 1: What Actually Is Open Access?

Mike Taylor | svpow.com | November 15, 2012

I’m going to keep this free of advocacy. Hopefully everything I say here will be uncontroversial, because all I am doing is surveying definitions and clarifying distinctions. I’ll save my opinions for later articles (not that there is any secret about them).

Open access (or OA)

It may seem a bit surprising to have to define “open access” when we’ve all been talking about about constantly for a year. But one of the biggest issues that derails constructive discussion of the move to OA is that the term is used in different ways by different groups.

The term “open access” was coined in December 2001 by the Budapest Open Access Initiative, which gave the following very explicit definition: