Fister: “An Academic Spring”

Be sure to check out Barbara Fister’s piece “An Academic Spring“. She follows scholar Timothy Gowers’ decision to withraw his participation from the scholarly activities of the large publisher, Elsevier:

“Gowers faulted the corporation for high prices, bundling subscriptions in ways that made selection prohibitively expensive for libraries, and for supporting the Research Works Act (RWA), proposed legislation that would prohibit government agencies from requiring that publicly funded research be freely accessible within a year.”

Gowers’ decision prompted action across academia. A petition against Elsevier was created, and brought together 10,800 signatures from those scholars who intended to boycott Elsevier as well.

Fister connects the “Academic Spring” with last year’s “Arab Spring” in a clever way that just might propel sudden change.