Open Access is the free, immediate, online availability of research articles coupled with the rights to use these articles fully in the digital environment. Open Access ensures that anyone can access and use these results—to turn ideas into industries and breakthroughs into better lives. [...] Even though research is largely produced with public dollars by researchers who share it freely, the results are hidden behind technical, legal, and financial barriers. These artificial barriers are maintained by legacy publishers and restrict access to a small fraction of users, locking out most of the world’s population and preventing the use of new research techniques.
Open Access publishing is considered a viable alternative to traditional publishing. Organizations like the Modern Language Association, the Association for Slavic, Eastern European, and Euroasian Studies, the College Art Association, and many others are engaged in supporting open access initiatives, like the Humanities Commons. Publishers like punctum books and the Open Humanities Press have emerged from the open access movement with a mission to use technology to support inquiry across disciplines by empowering scholars to share their ideas freely.