PLOS, SPARC and OASPA have created a guide HowOpenIsIt?that describes the major characteristics and different levels of Open Access. It is intended to assist "authors make informed decisions on where to publish based on publisher policies. In addition, funders and other organizations will have a resource that indicates criteria for what level of OA is required for their policies and mandates."
The guide has clear goals:
Move the conversation from “Is It Open Access?” to “HowOpenIsIt?”
Clarify the definition of OA
Illustrate a continuum of “more open” versus “less open”
Enable people to compare and contrast publications and policies
Broaden the understanding of OA to a wider audience
Determine how open a publisher is by using the grid
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