PLoS

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Open Access

When a loved one is sick or when people need more information about an area of science for any reason, they increasingly turn to the internet to learn more about the latest research and these days they expect to find it available to them.

We believe that scientific research represents a global treasury of information and that it should be published in an Open Access format, allowing anyone to freely read and re-use that information.

However, Open Access has a wider agenda than simply providing free access to research information – we believe that there is vast untapped potential for data mining and knowledge discovery, which is only possible when the research literature is not constrained behind access barriers.

What does Open Acccess mean? Simply that everything that we publish is freely available online throughout the world, for you to read, download, copy, distribute, and use (with attribution) any way you wish. No permission is required. Read a detaileddefinition. If you haven’t got time to read this, there are two things you need to know:

  1. Authors retain copyright, under a Creative Commons Attribution License.
  2. No permission is required to use – or reuse – the content.

Major funders such as the NIHHHMIWellcome Trust and the MRC want the public to have access to the work that they fund and require that papers be made available to them through PubMed Central (PMC).

This is the notice that PMC runs on their site; we think it sums up the situation pretty clearly.

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