Advantages and Disadvatages of Products being freely available online – A Reflection

It’s strange to think that this is the last blog post I will make under the module #UOSM2033, where has the semester gone!!

I’ll admit this wasn’t my favourite topic, and I found reading other people’s work much more interesting than researching my own, something that’s probably down to the aspect of the topic that I focussed on. However I did find it useful being able to draw upon and tie in my personal experience working with Open Access data at Taylor & Francis.

I had an intriguing discussion with Angie, both on my own blog and hers, as we both discussed similar things. We both agreed that students somewhat take for granted that they can access articles free of charge through University portals (WebCat, TDNet etc), and do not appreciate how much Universities pay for this, something that even Harvard is struggling to afford ( In response to me questioning the benefits of pay-to-view articles, Angie made the very interesting point that paying for something creates loyal customers ( This is not something I had considered but could certainly relate to. When I buy a newspaper or go to the cinema I try to get as much out of it as I can, concentrating on or reading every bit, however when watching a film that comes on the TV I often find myself not concentrating for the whole film, or even flicking channels. The same could be said for journal articles. Often I find that I flick through a free article or only read the abstract/executive summary/conclusions, however I could certainly see myself reading and understanding the whole article if I had to pay for it.

I chose to engage in a discussion with Dom because he went with the music industry as the topic for his blog. In response to his comments that providing music for free can expand an artist’s fan base, I asked whether a band could be too big to try to gain easy publicity this way ( Case in point would be the massive backlash faced by U2 when their latest album was automatically synced to almost every Apple device a month or so ago, much to the annoyance of many, proving that providing songs for free does not always lead to greater publicity or a larger fan base.

In all I have really enjoyed this module and have seriously considered continuing blogging once the module has finished.

Thanks for taking the time to read



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