The Editors of Greek, Roman, and Byzantine Studies (GRBS) [ISSN 0017-3916] have issued the following announcement:
Volume 49 (2009) will be the last volume of GRBS printed on paper. Beginning with volume 50, issues will be published quarterly on-line on the GRBS website, on terms of free access. We undertake this transformation in the hope of affording our authors a wider readership; out of concern for the financial state of our libraries; and in the belief that the dissemination of knowledge should be free.
The current process of submission and peer-review of papers will continue unchanged. The on-line format will be identical with our pages as now printed, and so articles will continue to be cited by volume, year, and page numbers.
Our hope is that both authors and readers will judge this new medium to be to their advantage, and that such open access will be of benefit to continuing scholarship on Greece.
– The editors
The editors are to be congratulated for grasping the nettle. But they are doing the right thing, and in the emphasis on wider access and scholarly quality are taking precisely the right approach.
For the world is changing, and older methods of knowledge dissemination must change too. Today I received an email from the French National Library, inviting me to take part in a survey and stating that they were rethinking all their services for the supply of reproductions. Here too, we can hear the wind of change.
As the poet wrote (read the words aloud, as with all verse):
Say not the struggle naught availeth,
The labour and the wounds are vain,
The enemy faints not, nor faileth,
And as things have been they remain.
If hopes were dupes, fears may be liars;
It may be, in yon smoke conceal’d,
Your comrades chase e’en now the fliers,
And, but for you, possess the field.
For while the tired waves, vainly breaking,
Seem here no painful inch to gain,
Far back, through creeks and inlets making,
Comes silent, flooding in the main.
And not by eastern windows only,
When daylight comes, comes in the light;
In front the sun climbs slow, how slowly!
But westward, look, the land is bright!
— “Say Not The Struggle Naught Availeth” by Arthur Hugh Clough
Thanks to C.E. Jones at Ancient World Online for the tip.