No, this is not about office hours. And it’s not about privacy issues raised in prior postings about public access to faculty emails and documents.
Rather, it’s about access to research. In the recent spending bill – yes, the same one mentioned in the previous post on the subway – there is direction and funding for federal agencies to establish mechanisms to make federally-funded research papers available to the public in digital format no later than 12 months after acceptance by a journal.
In most cases, researchers want their papers to be available and, if there is a roadblock, it is journal policy.
Details from Inside Higher Ed at http://www.insidehighered.com/quicktakes/2014/01/17/spending-bill-includes-open-access-legislation