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Definition of Open Access


Open-access (OA) literature is digital, online, free of charge, and free of most copyright and licensing restrictions.

  OA is compatible with copyright, peer review, revenue (even profit), print, preservation, prestige, quality, career-advancement, indexing, and other features and supportive services associated with conventional scholarly literature.

  The legal basis of OA is the consent of the copyright holder (for newer literature) or the expiration of copyright (for older literature).

  OA is compatible with peer review, and all the major OA initiatives for scientific and scholarly literature insist on its importance.

  There are two primary vehicles for delivering OA to research articles, OA journals ("gold OA") and OA repositories ("green OA").


  Open access is not synonymous with universal access.

  OA is a kind of access, not a kind of business model, license, or content.

  OA serves the interests of many groups.