Forwarding a Nature article to family or friends? You’re really not supposed to do so right now, let alone publish one of their articles online. Soon however, these restrictions will be history, and articles may be read online by outsiders, too. The publisher allows free online reading for all Nature journals, and fifteen others.
But it still starts with the subscribers: they are the ones who can share articles. Another hundred selected journals and blogs are allowed to publish links. Outsiders can’t browse the archives themselves. 'This sharing is intended for personal, non-commercial use', says Nature.
The expensive subscriptions to scientific journals are a nuisance to universities and governments. Results of all government-funded research should be freely accessible, as more and more institutions believe. Open access should be the new standard according to research funding institute NWO, university association VSNU, and the Department of Education, Culture, and Science. Nature’s revised approach doesn’t meet that standard yet.