At the beginning of the century there have been actions against the business practices of Elsevier and academic publishers in general. These protest have lead to open data publications and repositories. Problem remains basically with the universities, which require their researchers to publish or perish in what they consider as academic journals, while on the other hand the librarians have to buy the publications. While this hold should worry university management, it is clear that it does not. A request to talk about this matter with university board members in the Netherlands some years ago, did not result in any session.
The main objections of the protest group The Cost of Knowledge are:
2. Elsevier sells journals in very large "bundles," so libraries must buy a large set with many unwanted journals, or none at all. Elsevier thus makes huge profits by exploiting their essential titles, at the expense of other journals.3. Elsevier supports measures such as SOPA, PIPA and the Research Works Act, that aim to restrict the free exchange of information.
For more information: thePolyMath journal publishing reform page and the n-category cafe