Mission-critical OA!

While you’re over at Attila’s blog (see the entry below), be sure to read this entry about surgeons in desperate need of information during an operation. Library staff were able to provide the required paper (at 3am!), but the connection with OA is inescapable. Attila:

Even if the surgeon found the title or abstract of the paper within seconds […] would he/she be able to download the whole (copyrighted) content somehow within minutes too without an institutional subscription referring to informational and life emergency?
Could this exceptional information and life emergency be interpreted as a basic right with complementary duties? […] What if a perfectly targeted Google app (call it Google Emergency) would be at hand, one that would be able to transiently abandon copyright issues for the sake of human help and solidarity?

That’s a fine idea, but I hope that Open Access will render it moot, and that in the not-too-distant future no special application, only PubMed or Google Scholar, will be needed.

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