2.1 Introduction

Open access to information emphasizes on providing free access to scholarly material. There are many definitions of open access but the intent is always the same, that is removing barriers and providing access to information for all with no bias or restrictions. Traditionally publishing an article entailed approaching a publishing house to get it printed in prestigious journals. With the onset of e-publishing the process of publication from traditional printing changed to electronic forms of publishing and providing access. E-published content has several advantages such as instant access, simultaneous access to several users, searchability, easy replication, ease of use of multimedia components and easy detection of plagiarism to name only a few. E-publishing and online content raised the expectations of end users who needed answers to their information need quickly and accurately. More than that end users were at a loss to understand that when the network allowed them to access learned resources, why were information resources still inaccessible. Such questions and thinking lead to the widespread awareness of copyright and its implementation by publishers in ways that deterred free access and use of information resources. Open access as a concept existed before the internet manifested through world wide web but it gained impetus and much more support in the online technology facilitated environment of the Web. By definition though open  access is about providing free access to information the question arises how to go about actually making content open? There is much discussion about modes of providing open access content (Harnad et al., 2004). Willinksy (2005) argues that that there are several factors that affect open access to scholarly information such as user rights, availability, funding for OA publishing and technological tools among others. These factors notwithstanding there are two main ways that is 'Green' and 'Gold' routes to open access.

Last modified: Tuesday, 13 April 2021, 11:05 AM