As announced on the jisc-repositories list there is now a US counterpart to the EU Petition calling for Open Access.

We, the undersigned, believe that broad dissemination of research results is fundamental to the advancement of knowledge. For America’s taxpayers to obtain an optimal return on their investment in science, publicly funded research must be shared as broadly as possible. Yet too often, research results are not available to researchers, scientists, or the members of the public. Today, the Internet and digital technologies give us a powerful means of addressing this problem by removing access barriers and enabling new, expanded, and accelerated uses of research findings.

The petition was put together by the Alliance for Taxpayer’s Access in response to the 28,000 odd enlightened folks who signed the EU petition. I was encouraged to see prominent sponsor icons for American Libraries Association, Association of College & Research Libraries on the US petition.

I haven’t been tracking the Open Access movement as well as I should have–but I did take a few seconds while drinking coffee at the breakfast table this morning to sign the petition. The movement seems to be really making a lot of progress recently.

Via a bit of synchronicity Caroline Arms sent a message around at $work about the recent Emerging Libraries conference at Rice. Apparently Brewster Kahle and Paul Ginsparg had a meeting of like like minds. I guess it’s not surprising considering their roles in bringing libraries and archives into the computing age with The Internet Archive and arXiv. What is surprising is that it took this long. These two projects are wildly successful, living and breathing examples of Open Access projects.

The audio for all the conference presentations is available from Rice…including the very listenable Universal Access to Human Knowledge (Kahle) and Read as We May (Ginsparg).