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Why Open Access Matters?

Open Access Week is here, it is a global event celebrated each year to acknowledge the importance of continuing to work towards reform in the system of scholarly communication.

When a reader can see the title and abstract but not the full content of such paper without subscription or payments sounds like a beautifully made sculpture in locked inside an iron box

What is Open Access?

When a research output is published in form of peer-reviewed publications and non-peer-reviewed articles, conference papers, theses, book chapters, and monographs the ultimate objective is achieved when people are able to read it. Open access (OA) refers to the distribution of such research outputs for free of cost and possibly with the addition of a CC license to promote reuse of the published material.

Why Open Access Matters?

I am a researcher and have published more than 40 papers (as of 2018) in peer-reviewed journals. Some of my manuscripts are published in reputed journals but still, it is in limited access. To read those papers readers have to pay for or subscribe. The other option is as an author I should be able to accept the publication cost if I want my paper to be listed for open access. Unfortunately, I couldn’t afford the charges and accepted for limited access. In meantime, I have also published in another reputed journal with similar subject matter but this time it was an open access journal and doesn’t demand any publication cost. The published manuscript is available online for any person who is visiting he journals website.

After some days, I have been receiving citations with the papers that were published in open access journals and one or two citations with the papers that are published in limited access journals. Publishing a paper in reputed journals is not an easy task. It takes months or even years to complete the review process and revision if required. Nightmares happen when after waiting for such a long time the papers are rejected and in some cases, the papers are rejected even after revisions.

Finally, when a reader can see the title and abstract but the full content of such paper without subscription or payments sounds like a beautifully made sculpture in locked inside an iron box. Both the sculptor and person who wants to see the sculpture has no use of it which has crossed months or years to take its final shape.

Open Access is the only way that justifies the famous saying “Knowledge multiplies when shared”

Researchers work hard to bring his idea into a paper form. This takes at least a month of brain work and some ideas take years. After this, they have to submit to a journal and cross the review process. The researcher’s hard work pays off when people would be able to read it and he gets recognition among the fellow academicians. Open Access is the only way that justifies the famous saying “Knowledge multiplies when shared”.

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