Topic 5

Reflective Summary: Topic 5 – ‘Open access can save lives’

The topic set this week caught my attention and realization on how vast open access is. Everyone expects to be able to access any information we want and tend to become frustrated if required to pay. However, instead of being shocked to pay for quality information, we should be grateful for the access we already have. The content we find is costly to the author and takes up their time and hard-work. It seems nowadays we are so accustomed to access, that we are now taking it for granted.

I enjoyed reading my peers’ blogs this week as they each had their own perspective of the topic. For example, Joe spoke about illegal movie downloads. This got me thinking about music piracy and how YouTube has aided in download illegally with its open access to videos. I questioned him about solutions to changing piracy and whether the changes are being accepted or counteracted by another illegal service. He answered that there is a difference in quality when if downloading illegally and the price is small for purchasing therefore, changes should be efficient.

Whilst reflecting, open access in news caught my attention. With newspapers now being available online this could be detrimental to the news industry as less readers buy hardcopies and can break through a paywall, reading online for free. However, there are some incentives to buy subscription e.g. The Economist allows access to one article daily and the Financial Times allows you to access to read the headlines. But does this work?


Overall, I believe open access is too vast and readers should slowly evolve to pay for what they access. Possible solutions could be government subsidies to authors for publishing, advertising on webpages (as a source of income) and discounted subscription e.g. for students.

Thanks and Merry Christmas!

Word count: 300

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