“Open-access (OA) literature is digital, online, free of charge, and free of most copyright and licensing restrictions.”
Dr. Peter Suber, Director, Harvard Office for Scholarly Communication and author of Open Access (MIT University Press, 2012)
For more information on Open Access, see Dr. Suber's writings on Open Access.
There are two main types or ways Open Access literature can be disseminated:
"Even the best ideas remain just that until they are shared, until they can be utilized by others. The more people that can access and build upon the latest research, the more valuable that research becomes and the more likely we are to benefit as a society."
(Source: SPARC. (2021). Open access. https://sparcopen.org/open-access/)
Wider Audience = more readers, more potential collaborators, more citations, and more recognition