Leo Waaijers writes about copyright, prestige and cost control in the world of open access while in two appendices Bas Savenije and Michel Wesseling compare the costs of open access publishing and subscriptions/licences for their respective institutions.
Transferring the copyright in a publication has become a relic of the past; nowadays a “licence to publish” is sufficient. The author retains the copyrights. Institutions should make the use of such a licence part of their institutional policy.
The classic impact factor for a journal is not a good yardstick for the prestige of an author. Modern digital technology makes it possible to tailor the measurement system to the author. Institutions should, when assessing scientists and scholars, switch to this type of measurement and should also promote its further development.
The traditional subscription model for circulating publications is needlessly complex and expensive. Switching to Open Access, however, requires co-ordination that goes beyond the level of individual institutions. Supra-institutional organisations, for example the European University Association, should take the necessary initiative.