Web publishing and its technical possibilities, and the open access movement that has accompanied it, have resulted in a number of tendencies with mixed implications for scholarly communication. This article examines the impact of these changes in the field of the African studies, where the North-South divide in scientific publishing poses an additional challenge to the issues at stake. It looks at several initiatives taken by the Africanist scholarly community in the Netherlands to bridge the divide, in particular the establishment of a digital platform for African studies. It concludes that these initiatives are all geared towards redressing the balance and establishing open scholarly communication on an equal footing, but that true open access can only be achieved if practised both ways (by North and South) and not at the expense of academic quality standards. In addition, it requires the active commitment of each and every individual scholar. This commitment still needs to grow in Africanist circles.