I thought I would share my most recent letter to John Conyers re: HR 801. Please consider something similar to [email protected].
Please let me very briefly explain the two reasons I oppose HR 801.
First, as a member of the taxpaying public, if I pay for research to be conducted I don’t expect to pay a second time to gain access to the results of the research. When the public pays for research, the research belongs to the public. In a time when budget shortfalls are at historically high figures, the idea that HR 801 would create or continue a situation in which taxpayers pay TWICE for access to research is appalling. The people’s representatives in government should now be looking for any and every opportunity to be better stewards of the people’s money. To the extent that government represents the people’s interest, our representatives in government should act vigorously to strengthen and uphold the NIH mandate and similar initiatives that insure the public only pays once for research.
Second, as an individual faculty member and researcher, under the traditional publisher system I am expected to:
– Come up with ideas for research,
– Find grant funding for the research,
– Identify and hire graduate students and other professionals to perform the research,
– Carry out the research,
– Write up the results of the research in a clear and concise manner, and
– Surrender all my rights to the written results of my research to a publisher.
I hope you can appreciate why I am opposed to a situation in which I and my team spend thousands of hours of effort on the research – only to have a publisher who spends a dozen or so hours coordinating the review of our article and editing our article claim complete ownership of our written work. And then they want to charge me for access to copies of my own work.
Please, do the right thing for the public. Represent us. Oppose HR 801. The only conceivable explanation for supporting HR 801 is that you have placed the public interest in a position secondary to the publishing industry’s perceived self-interest.
David Wiley, PhD
David O. McKay School of Education
Brigham Young University