January 22, 2022

AAP: 81 Scholarly Journal Publishers Oppose Federal Research Public Access Act

Here we go again.

Some of the publishers who signed the letter include Cambridge U. Press, Elsevier, Springer, McGraw-Hill, Taylor & Francis, Wiley, and Wolters Kluwer (Complete List Below).

From the Association of American Publishers: Today, 81 U.S. scholarly journal publishing organizations expressed their strong opposition to the third introduction of the Federal Research Public Access Act (FRPAA, H.R. 4004 and S.2096).

The Association of American Publishers’ Professional and Scholarly Publishing Division (AAP/PSP) and the DC Principles Coalition sent letters on behalf of a diverse cross-section of American non-profit, scholarly society and commercial organizations, to Sen. Joseph Lieberman, Chair, and Sen. Susan Collins, Ranking Member of the Committee on Homeland Security and Governmental Affairs (Publishers’ letter to the Senate) and Rep. Darrell Issa, Chair, and Rep. Elijah Cummings, Ranking Member, Committee on Oversight and Government Reform (Publishers’ letter to the House).

“FRPAA is little more than an attempt at intellectual eminent domain, but without fair compensation to authors and publishers,” said Tom Allen, President and CEO, AAP.

“While we oppose this bill, we have always advocated that long-needed dialogue about public access to federally-funded research will be best addressed through the White House Office of Science and Technology Policy process as created by Congress, not through legislation such as FRPAA and the Research Works Act. We have been participating in the OSTP process and continue to support it.” Publishers’ filing with OSTP

The 81 signatories’ main points of opposition to FRPAA are:

  • It requires that final manuscripts of researchers’ journal articles that explain, interpret and extensively report the results of federally-funded research — manuscripts which have undergone publishers’ validation, digital enhancement, production, interoperability and distribution processes — be publicly available online, worldwide, no more than six months after publication.
  • The one-size-fits-all six-month deadline for every federal agency that funds research ignores well-known significant differences in how each research discipline discovers and uses individual articles, periods that can last several years before costs are recovered.
  • It limits where government-funded researchers may publish their work.
  • It undermines publishers’ investments in new business models that currently provide unprecedented access for the public to such works for free or at modest cost.

At a time when Congress is looking to cut unnecessary expenses in federal government and focus budgets on priorities, FRPAA imposes additional costs on all federal agencies by requiring them to divert critical research funding to the creation and management of new databases, archives and infrastructure to handle dissemination of these articles — functions already being performed by private-sector publishers.

  • AACC International
  • Acoustical Society of America
  • American Association for Cancer Research
  • American Association for Clinical Chemistry
  • American Association of Anatomists
  • American Association of Immunologists
  • American Association of Physicists in Medicine
  • American Association of Physics Teachers
  • American Astronomical Society
  • The American Ceramic Society
  • American Chemical Society
  • American College of Chest Physicians
  • American College of Physicians
  • American Dental Association
  • American Fisheries Society
  • American Geophysical Union
  • American Institute of Aeronautics and Astronautics
  • American Institute of Biological Sciences
  • American Institute of Chemical Engineers (AIChE)
  • American Institute of Physics Publishing
  • American Mathematical Society
  • American Meteorological Society
  • American Physiological Society
  • American Phytopathological Society
  • American Psychiatric Publishing
  • American Psychological Association
  • American Public Health Association
  • American Roentgen Ray Society
  • American Society for Investigative Pathology
  • American Society for Nutrition
  • American Society of Agricultural and Biological Engineers
  • American Society of Agronomy
  • American Society of Animal Science
  • American Society of Clinical Oncology
  • American Society of Hematology
  • American Society of Plant Biologists
  • APMI International
  • ARVO – Association for Research in Vision and Ophthalmology
  • ASQ – American Society for Quality
  • Association of Learned and Professional Society Publishers (ALPSP)
  • AVS: Science and Technology of Materials, Interfaces, and Processing
  • Biophysical Society
  • Cambridge University Press
  • Crop Science Society of America
  • Ecological Society of America
  • Elsevier
  • The Endocrine Society
  • Entomological Society of America
  • F.A. Davis Company
  • GeoScienceWorld
  • Gival Press LLC
  • The Histochemical Society
  • Human Factors and Ergonomics Society
  • IEEE
  • Institute of Food Technologists
  • International and American Associations for Dental Research
  • International Association for the Study of Pain
  • John Wiley & Sons
  • Lynne Rienner Publishers, Inc.
  • The McGraw-Hill Companies
  • Mycological Society of America
  • National Ground Water Association
  • The Optical Society
  • The Ornithological Council
  • The Physiological Society
  • Poultry Science Association
  • The Professional Animal Scientist
  • The Radiological Society of North America (RSNA)
  • SAE International
  • Seismological Society of America
  • SEPM Society for Sedimentary Geology
  • Silverchair Science+Communications, Inc.
  • Society for Experimental Biology and Medicine
  • Society for the Study of Reproduction
  • Society of Economic Geologists, Inc.
  • Soil Science Society of America
  • Springer Publishing Company
  • Taylor & Francis
  • Thieme Publishers
  • University of the Basque Country Press
  • Wolters Kluwer
About Gary Price

Gary Price (gprice@mediasourceinc.com) is a librarian, writer, consultant, and frequent conference speaker based in the Washington D.C. metro area. Before launching INFOdocket, Price and Shirl Kennedy were the founders and senior editors at ResourceShelf and DocuTicker for 10 years. From 2006-2009 he was Director of Online Information Services at Ask.com, and is currently a contributing editor at Search Engine Land.