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Should taxpayers pay to read the results of public funded research or

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Should taxpayers pay to read the results of public funded research or  [#permalink]

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New Project RC Butler 2019 - Practice 2 RC Passages Everyday
Passage # 64, Date :04-MAR-2019
This post is a part of New Project RC Butler 2019. Click here for Details


Should taxpayers pay to read the results of public funded research or do they have the right to those. This issue is the center of hotly contested debate in the House of Representatives as a part of the Research Works Act. The Research Works Act would forbid the National Institute of Health to require, as it now does, that its grantees provide copies of the papers they publish in peer-reviewed journals to the library. If the bill passes, to read the results of federally funded research, most Americans would have to buy access to individual articles at a cost of $15 or $30 apiece, making citizens pay for research already funded by them.

Publishers of journals such as Cell, Science, and The New England Journal of Medicine, who are backing the bill, argue that they add value to the finished product and that requiring them to provide free access to journal articles within a year of publication denies them their fair compensation and makes it difficult for them to generate profits comparable to the profits in the industry. Furthermore, they claim that while the research may be publically funded, the journals are not, claiming that they add significant value in the peer review process that makes the published articles worthwhile.

But in fact, these journals receive billions of dollars in subscription payments, a good portion of their revenue today that is derived largely from public funds. Moreover, even the peer review process, which the journals claim is their primary value add, is funded by public funds. The researchers who volunteer their time to review their peers’ work come primarily from universities and research organizations that are funded by taxpayers’ dollars.

Rather than rolling back public access, Congress should move to enshrine a simple principle in United States law: if taxpayers paid for it, they own it. This is already the case for scientific papers published by researchers at the N.I.H. campus in Bethesda, Md., whose work has been explicitly excluded from copyright protection since 1976 because it was funded by the public. It would be easy to extend this coverage to all works funded by the federal government.

1. The primary purpose of the passage is to

A. Demonstrate how the publishing industry is misusing the time of Congress for their own financial benefit.
B. Illustrate a moral dilemma facing the House of Representatives.
C. Evaluate the pros and cons of passing the Research Works Act.
D. Discuss and disprove the claims put forth by the backers of Research Works Act.
E. Advocate all publically funded research to be made open source.


2. Which of the following if true would undermine the claims of publishers of Cell, Science, and The New England Journal of Medicine?

A. Publishers such as Cell and Science that are backing the Research Works Act already have higher revenues than their European counterparts.
B. Publishers such as Cell and Science that are backing the Research Works Act are much more profitable than publishers who publish independent research works and do not provide free access to public.
C. The government agencies are able to negotiate serious discounts because they argue that they are paying only for priority access for research that would be made public anyway.
D. While the overall revenue of the publishing industry in general has gone down due to the rise of internet, the overall revenue of the publishers backing the Research Works Act has been remained largely unchanged.
E. There is little risk to the overall profitability of the Cell, Science, etc. even if the Research Works Act is not passed.


3. The third paragraph performs which of the following functions

A. It summarizes the discussion thus far and suggests additional reasons why the publishers may have been unfairly compensated.
B. It refutes the claims made by the publishers of Science, Cell, and The New England Journal of Medicine.
C. It discusses a scenario in which the arguments of publishers of Science, Cell, and The New England Journal of Medicine may not hold ground.
D. It puts forward new evidence to distract the focus of the House of Representatives.
E. It cites a specific case to illustrate the inconsistency in the claims made by the publishers of Science, Cell, and The New England Journal of Medicine in the previous paragraph.



Difficulty Level: 650

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Originally posted by Skywalker18 on 04 Jun 2018, 10:10.
Last edited by SajjadAhmad on 30 Sep 2019, 05:24, edited 4 times in total.
Updated - Complete topic (749).
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Re: Should taxpayers pay to read the results of public funded research or  [#permalink]

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New post 05 Mar 2019, 03:37
Q1-
A is wrong, the passage does not say any such thing.
B is also wrong.
The passage does not discuss pros and cons,C is wrong.
Para 3 disprove the claims put forth by the backers of Research Works Act (Publishers of journals such as Cell, Science, and The New England Journal of Medicine). D is correct
E is wrong.

Q2-
A,C,D,E are completely irrelevant as per the context of the passage.
B is the answer

Q3-
Ans is B (this question is quite similar to Q1)
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Re: Should taxpayers pay to read the results of public funded research or  [#permalink]

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New post 12 Apr 2019, 04:59
1. The primary purpose of the passage is to

D. Discuss and disprove the claims put forth by the backers of Research Works Act.
E. Advocate all publically funded research to be made open source.

I eliminated the other options and ended up choosing option E. Please help

AjiteshArun , GMATNinja , MagooshExpert , GMATGuruNY , VeritasPrepBrian , MartyTargetTestPrep , DmitryFarber , VeritasKarishma , generis , other experts
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Re: Should taxpayers pay to read the results of public funded research or  [#permalink]

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New post 12 Apr 2019, 13:36
2
Skywalker18 wrote:
1. The primary purpose of the passage is to

D. Discuss and disprove the claims put forth by the backers of Research Works Act.
E. Advocate all publically funded research to be made open source.

I eliminated the other options and ended up choosing option E. Please help

generis

Skywalker18 , this question is tricky.
We have to discern the author's point of view, but that POV appears to be split between the very general and the very specific.

Almost always, if an author makes a sweeping claim that (s)he discusses
mostly in the context of a single example, the specific context is much more important
than the sweeping claim.

With respect to the primary purpose of a passage, what the author declares is important, but what the author delivers is more important.

The author commits the fallacy of "hasty generalization," in which
too much is extrapolated and generalized from too small a sample or example.

• The "all research" in option (E) is too strong
-- two sentences that seem to support (E) are followed or preceded by discussion only of specific N.I.H. health research

This sentence
Congress should move to enshrine a simple principle in United States law: if taxpayers paid for it, they own it.
(1) comes after three paragraphs that discuss N.I.H. research published in medical journals
(2) is followed by a specific example from one of the N.I.H. campuses

This sentence
It would be easy to extend this coverage to all works funded by the federal government.
(1) refers to one policy of the N.I.H. on the Bethesda, MD, campus.

--In order for (E) to sustain its own claim and therefore to be better than (D),
the author should mention other kinds of publicly funded research,
especially because now we know that NOT all publicly funded research in other areas is open source.
The author has taken on a policy question well beyond health research.
-- Examples could include publicly funded research in poverty prevention, physical science (not health-based), or education.

• the passage supports verbs in (D) better than the verb in (E)
-- In primary purpose questions, look carefully at the verbs and adjectives.
(E) says "advocate" [for all XYZ to be open source].
(D) says "discuss and disprove" [a specific subject and claims made about that subject by specific people]

-- Most of the text in the passage supports the verbs in (D) rather than the verb in (E)
Paragraph 1: Every sentence except the first one discusses the content of Research Works Act

Paragraph 2: Every sentence discusses the position of major backers of the bill
"Publishers such as A, B, and C, who are backing the bill, argue that ..."
"Furthermore, they claim that . . ."

Paragraph 3: Every sentence is aimed at disproving content in paragraph 2.
"But in fact, these journals receive billions . . . "
"Moreover, even the peer review process[/highlight] is funded by public funds."

(4) As does paragraph 1, paragraph 4 appears to contain conflicting purposes.
All of the content, though, arguably is a continuation of the argument about the bill.
Worse, the only specific content in paragraph 4 refers to the intellectual property
of one N.I.H. campus in which precedent has been set.

• Final analysis: (D) has more support from the passage
Paragraphs 1, 2, and 3 do "discuss and disprove" the matters described in (D)

Almost none of the content actually supports option (E).
A couple of assertions in the passage may make it seem as if "all publicly funded research"
is the author's target, but those assertions are not supported.

If the author truly wants to advocate that all publicly funded research be open source,
(s)he ought to talk about more than one narrow area and one specific bill.

Hope that helps.
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Re: Should taxpayers pay to read the results of public funded research or   [#permalink] 12 Apr 2019, 13:36
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