Friday, July 30, 2010

APS Online Journals Available Free in U.S. Public Libraries

In an interesting move the American Physical Society is making all issues of its journals freely available to readers in public libraries. From its 28 July announcement:
The American Physical Society (APS) announces a new public access initiative that will give readers and researchers in public libraries in the United States full use of all online APS journals, from the most recent articles back to the first issue in 1893, a collection including over 400,000 scientific research papers. APS will provide this access at no cost to participating public libraries, as a contribution to public engagement with the ongoing development of scientific understanding.

APS Publisher Joseph Serene observed that "public libraries have long played a central role in our country’s intellectual life, and we hope that through this initiative they will become an important avenue for the general public to reach our research journals, which until now have been available only through the subscriptions at research institutions that currently cover the significant costs of peer review and online publication."

Librarians can obtain access by accepting a simple online site license and providing valid IP addresses of public-use computers in their libraries. The license requires that public library users must be in the library when they read the APS journals or download articles. Initially the program will be offered to U.S. public libraries, but it may include additional countries in the future. . . .

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