International Open Access Week begins today, 19th October. This annual event aims to raise awareness of the beneficial impacts of open access publishing and to "inspire wider participation" in this way of disseminating knowledge. The conversation is happening on Twitter as well as at local community events, particularly hosted by universities. Some Australian events are listed by the Australasian Open Access Support Group.
While much of the discussion about open access is related to scholarly publishing, the issue is also of prime importance in the realm of legal information. The Declaration on Free Access to Law, made in 2002 at a meeting of legal information institutes, states that "Public legal information from all countries and international institutions is part of the common heritage of humanity. Maximising access to this information promotes justice and the rule of law". The Free Access to Law Movement continues to grow and influence the way that legal information is accessed and used.
And finally, if you want to support open access in general society, check out the Wikipedia Edit-a-thon on Tuesday, 20th October at 9 am AWST. The edit-a-thon aims to leverage collaboration to improve, create, and translate Wikipedia pages related to open access.
ALLA(WA) Secretary - Megan Fitzgibbons.
Librarian, University of Western Australia.