I was recently looking something up in Evernote, and I ran across a post by Eric Rauchway on Crooked Timber from July 2013. The post concerns the American Historical Association/s proposed recommendation for an embargo on dissertations. The AHA adopted a Statement on Policies Regarding the Option to Embargo Completed PhD Dissertations on 19 July 2013. It begins
The American Historical Association strongly encourages graduate programs and university libraries to adopt a policy that allows the embargoing of completed history PhD dissertations in digital form for as many as six years.
There was a lot of debate about the wisdom of dissertation embargoes before and after the statement was announced. Rauchway finished his post with a comment that all of us should think about.
When we find ourselves trying to make scholarship less readily available – however good our intentions – we should probably ask ourselves if we can solve our problems some other way.