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Just who is on the defensive?
- To: firstname.lastname@example.org
- Subject: Just who is on the defensive?
- From: David Goodman <dgoodman@Princeton.EDU>
- Date: Wed, 24 Jan 2007 20:11:48 EST
- Reply-to: email@example.com
- Sender: firstname.lastname@example.org
First the summary, from Jennifer McLennan at ARL: > The consultant advised them to focus on simple messages, such > as "Public access equals government censorship". He hinted that > the publishers should attempt to equate traditional publishing > models with peer review, and "paint a picture of what the world > would look like without peer-reviewed articles". ... Dezenhall > noted that if the other side is on the defensive, it doesn't > matter if they can discredit your statements, she added: "Media > massaging is not the same as intellectual debate. (The publishers' group mentioned in the article: Elsevier, Wiley and the American Chemical Society) Now as quick comment to start off, their PR advisor has chosen what are perhaps the weakest arguments against open access. If governments want to censor or direct academic research they already have the ability--and governments use it. Limiting my examples to the US:. They direct the research and publication permitted from government laboratories, as the US does with global warming; they can control what they fund, as with stem-cell research; they can prohibit some classes of research altogether, as with cannabis; they can restrict it, as with cryptography. They can even restrict the attendance at scientific meetings. They can unbelievably, already delay or prevent the publication of medical research providing cures, purely for military advantage, as they did with penicillin in world war II. Peer review is not carried out by publishers. It is carried out completely by scientists--the scientists who submit the papers, the scientists who submit the papers, the scientists who allot them to referees, the scientists who do the refereeing. and the scientists who make the final decision on the basis of the referee's reports. Publishers claim to organize the process, but it has never been clearly shown just what they do but pay office expenses and purchase the software to keep track of the correspondence. Open source software is also available, and scientists are perfectly able to operate on their own; for many journals they do just that. What would the world look like without peer review? It would presumably have fraudulent medical research, such as some of the recent stem cell research, and it might have fraudulent research in other fields, such as the Lucent fraud a few years back, all published under the current publishing system--complete with peer-review. The main problems with open-access are getting scientists to use it, and making the financial readjustments required. If the commercial publishers remain involved, it might cost more than the present, but otherwise it would almost certainly cost less. That commercial and large society publishers should use such arguments is a sign of the strength and inevitability of the open access movement. But this is the advice he gave them, not necessarily what they will actually decide to say. In that case, it shows that even an outside advisor perceives the strength and inevitability of the open access movement. David Goodman, Ph.D., M.L.S. email@example.com ________________ Date: Wed, 24 Jan 2007 15:09:48 -0500 (EST) From: "News@Nature Breaking News Alert" <News_at_Nature_Breaking_News@ealerts.nature.com> Subject: PR's 'pit bull' takes on open access To: dgoodman@Princeton.EDU BREAKING NEWS PR's 'pit bull' takes on open access http://ealerts.nature.com/cgi-bin24/DM/y/ecB40SvGCp0Hho0BKgc0E8 A news story in this week's Nature details how scientific publishers have hired a controversial consultant -- better known for helping the likes of Enron and Exxon -- to help them fight the open-access movement. The author of Nail 'Em! Confronting High-Profile Attacks on Celebrities and Businesses is now helping publishers strategize about how to counter the push towards making scientific results freely available to all. Read the full story at firstname.lastname@example.org. http://ealerts.nature.com/cgi-bin24/DM/y/ecB40SvGCp0Hho0BKgc0E8 To ensure you stay up to date with this and other stories affecting science and scientists around the world, sign up for Nature's free table of contents and breaking news alerts here. http://ealerts.nature.com/cgi-bin24/DM/y/ecB40SvGCp0Hho0pcj0Eh ----------------------------------------------------------------- As a registered user of Nature Publishing Group's Web sites, our database indicates that you have opted-in to receive News@nature Breaking News Alerts. If you no longer wish to receive these e-mails or to discontinue all e-mail services from Nature Publishing Group please update your online account. http://ealerts.nature.com/cgi-bin24/DM/y/ecB40SvGCp0Hho0Z5d0ET Nature Publishing Group | 75 Varick St Fl 9 | New York | NY 10013-1917 | USA #### ---2071850956-1445788498-1169687492=:16578--
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