7. The two most widely read discussion forums devoted to OA issues are U.S.-based: The American Scientist Open Access Forum, launched in August 1998 (American-hosted but moderated by Canadian Stevan Harnad) and the SPARC Open Access Forum (SOAF), launched in July 2003 (moderated by myself). The AmSci Forum focuses on OA archiving and related issues like government OA policy, the effect of OA on citation impact, and strategies for spreading author self-archiving. SOAF deals with all OA issues, broadly construed. Several other U.S.-based discussion lists often have OA-related threads: LibLicense from Yale University, OAI-Eprints from the Open Archives Initiative, ScholComm (for Scholarly Communication) from the American Library Association, SPARC-IR (on institutional repositories) and SPARC OpenData from SPARC, and SSP-L from the Society for Scholarly Publishing.
8. The U.S. is fortunate to have several effective OA advocacy organizations: the Alliance for Taxpayer Access (ATA), Open Access Working Group (OAWG), Public Knowledge (PK), and the Scholarly Publishing and Academic Resources Coalition (SPARC). SPARC is a coalition of more than 200 research institutions founded by Rick Johnson in 1998 and currently headed by Heather Joseph. Its early focus was on introducing competition into the journal marketplace and making journals more affordable. But since the Budapest Open Access Initiative in February 2002 (in which SPARC participated), it has worked actively for OA. SPARC has spearheaded a number of education and advocacy campaigns, including Create Change (grassroots advocacy tips for faculty and librarians), a Publisher Assistance Program (planning assistance for OA publishing), and an extensive Publisher Partner Program (supporting free and affordable journals). It has created an Authors Addendum (a contract supplement to help authors retain rights to their work), a directory of Open Access Programs (resources for librarians and administrators to help promote OA among faculty), an OA Sponsorship guide (helping OA journals find sponsors), and a guide to Open Access Business Planning.
To support these programs, it formed the SPARC Consulting Group, which provides business, financial, and strategic consulting services to universities, learned societies, and publishers. SPARC promotes community understanding of key issues through discussion forums on OA, Open Data, and Institutional Repositories, and by publishing the SPARC Open Access Newsletter (which I write). It also has a European arm called SPARC Europe, headed by David Prosser. Less visible to the public, SPARC has been an invaluable convenor and coalition-builder. It not only helped to form the ATA and OAWG, but continues to lead them as well. Public Knowledge was founded in 2001 to speak for the public interest in information policy. Its primary policy interests under president and co-founder