Petition to the Governing Board of the Entomological Society of America (ESA) to promote toll-free Web access to articles published in ESA journals

Whereas free World Wide Web access to journal articles serves the interests of the authors of research articles, of science and scientists generally, and of the public,

Whereas making articles permanently and freely accessible on the Web costs no more than two dollars per page,1

Whereas free Web access will have little if any effect on institutional subscriptions to ESA journals so long as researchers and librarians desire to continue with centrally printed issues,2

I therefore petition the Governing Board of the Entomological Society of America to

  1. Allow authors to buy at a fair price, immediate, free-access posting of their articles on the Web (including posting on PubMed Central).3
  2. Provide free Web access to all articles in its traditionally published journals no more than two years after publication (including posting on PubMed Central).4


_________________________________                    __________________________________
Name (please print) (must be ESA member)              Signature

Signing this petition indicates that you want the Governing Board to adopt requests (1) and (2) at their December 1999 meeting. If they fail to adopt one or both requests, you want them to explain their rejection of the request(s) in the February ESA Newsletter. If there is no adoption and no explanation, you call for a mail ballot on each rejected request, as provided by Article XI, Section 3, of the ESA Bylaws5.


1 PDF files can be made for less than $1 per page and journal articles can be posted on some Web servers for free.

2 See Fig. 6 of "Free Internet access to traditional journals," American Scientist 86(5): 463-471 (1998) This figure is updated at

3 ESA has sold limited Web access to articles since Nov. 1997 and intends to sell unlimited access in 2000. Posting refereed journal articles on PubMed Central ( can be done only by a publisher and will make ESA's electronic reprints conveniently accessible to all biologists.

4 This will add no new costs because ESA is already paying for the needed files, and these files can be posted without charge on PubMed Central.

If you are an ESA member and agree with this petition, please sign and hand, mail, or FAX it to Tom Walker at Univ. Fla., PO Box 110620, Gainesville, FL 32611-0620 or 352-392-0190 (FAX). Send questions or comments to