Elsevier is taking down papers from Academia.edu. From SV-POW: Lots of researchers post PDFs of their own papers on their own web-sites. It’s always been so, because even though technically it’s in breach of the copyright transfer agreements that we blithely sign, everyone knows it’s right and proper. Preventing people from making their own work available would be insane, and the publisher that did it would be committing a PR gaffe of huge proportions. Enter Elsevier, stage left. Bioinformatician Guy Leonard is just one of several people to have mentioned on Twitter this morning that Academia.edu took down their papers in response to a notice from Elsevier. More here. Commentary on this story by Stephen Curry here.
John Wiley & Sons, Inc., has launched a partnership with Altmetric. John Wiley & Sons, Inc., has launched a partnership with Altmetric, a service that tracks and measures the impact of scholarly articles and datasets on both traditional and social media. From December 7, Altmetric scores and badges will be displayed on each Cochrane Protocol and Review published in the Cochrane Database of Systematic Reviews (CDSR). Altmetric tracks social media sites like Twitter, Facebook, Google+, and Pinterest as well as blogs, newspapers, magazines and online reference managers like Mendeley and CiteULike for mentions of the published Cochrane Protocols and Reviews. Altmetric creates and displays a score for each article measuring the quality and quantity of attention that the particular article has received. The Altmetric score is based on three main factors: the number of people who have mentioned it online, the type of people who have mentioned it (i.e. scientists or members of the public), and where the mentions occurred. More here.
Jisc Digital Festival 2014 registration opens today. Today, 10 December, registration opens for Jisc’s Digital Festival taking place at the ICC in Birmingham on 11-12 March 2014. After a two-year break the conference is taking a new guise aiming to not only showcase the best digital talent in the UK but provide ample networking opportunities. The festival will be innovative, informative and fun, showcasing and celebrating the very best in UK digital talent by bringing together experts and providers from the higher education, further education and skills sectors to share ideas and best practice. More here.
Jisc Inform / Issue 38, Winter 2013 | #jiscinform | Open access success: researchers share their stories. Researchers are often urged to make their work open access for the good of their institution or even the good of society. But what are the benefits to them? We asked five researchers to share their open access success stories… More here.
10 journals to go open-access in 2014. As part of the SCOAP3 publishing initiative, 10 journals in high-energy physics will offer unrestricted access to their peer-reviewed articles, starting January 1… Major publishing companies Elsevier—home of Physical Letters B and Nuclear Physics B—Institute of Physics Publishing and Springer took part in the SCOAP3 agreement, along with the Chinese Academy of Sciences, Deutsche Physikalische Gesellschaft, Hindawi, Jagiellonian University, Oxford University Press, Physical Society of Japan, SISSA Medialab and Società di Fisica. SCOAP3 members say they hope to add new partners to the initiative in the future. More here.
CC’s Next Generation Licenses — Welcome Version 4.0! We proudly introduce our 4.0 licenses, now available for adoption worldwide. The 4.0 licenses — more than two years in the making — are the most global, legally robust licenses produced by CC to date. We have incorporated dozens of improvements that make sharing and reusing CC-licensed materials easier and more dependable than ever before. More here.
Scholarly Kitchen: Stage Five Book Publishing: A Guide for University Presses. The five stages of book publishing outlined here comprise a framework to help to look for areas of growth. The five-stage paradigm applies to some degree to all segments of the global book industry, but my emphasis and examples are directed specifically to the American university press world. The plight of university presses is unfortunate, as their role in scholarly communications, especially the certification of faculty in the humanities, is an important one and not something that is likely to be shoved aside because of new developments (which are quite stunning in themselves) in digital media for the entertainment industry: There is a place for whiz-bang technical innovations, but it is difficult, not to mention awful, to imagine a world without the reflective study of Erasmus, Darwin, Burke, and Marx. The five-stage typology is not going to pay today’s bills for any university press; it is not going to get a more generous allocation of funds from any university administration; and it is not going to get people or libraries who have stopped buying press books suddenly to jump up waving a checkbook. What I hope it will do, however, is describe some broad trends that I believe are inevitable, and suggest ways to align scholarly publishing with those trends, the better to reap financial gain from them. More here.
Open Access Books: Wellcome Library Announces Support of Knowledge Unlatched Project & View “KU: The Movie”. Wellcome Library has signed up to a new open access pilot project, Knowledge Unlatched (KU). KU aims to make a collection of books, covering a wide range of humanities and social science topics, available on open access licenses through funding from hundreds of libraries. More here.
How journals like Nature, Cell and Science are damaging science, by Randy Schekman in The Guardian. I am a scientist. Mine is a professional world that achieves great things for humanity. But it is disfigured by inappropriate incentives. The prevailing structures of personal reputation and career advancement mean the biggest rewards often follow the flashiest work, not the best. Those of us who follow these incentives are being entirely rational – I have followed them myself – but we do not always best serve our profession’s interests, let alone those of humanity and society. We all know what distorting incentives have done to finance and banking. The incentives my colleagues face are not huge bonuses, but the professional rewards that accompany publication in prestigious journals – chiefly Nature, Cell and Science. More here.
The Open-Access Movement is Not Really about Open Access, by Jeffrey Beall. While the open-access (OA) movement purports to be about making scholarly content open-access, its true motives are much different. The OA movement is an anti-corporatist movement that wants to deny the freedom of the press to companies it disagrees with. The movement is also actively imposing onerous mandates on researchers, mandates that restrict individual freedom. To boost the open-access movement, its leaders sacrifice the academic futures of young scholars and those from developing countries, pressuring them to publish in lower-quality open-access journals. The open-access movement has fostered the creation of numerous predatory publishers and standalone journals, increasing the amount of research misconduct in scholarly publications and the amount of pseudo-science that is published as if it were authentic science. More here.
Open Access Archivangelism: Defining OA: The Green/Gold and Immediate/Delayed Distinction. The Green/Gold distinction (which is based on who provides the access: the publisher [Gold] or the author [Green]) is more important now than ever, as publishers fight to retain control of their content. The distinction resolves confusion and is simple to understand (but then needs to be adhered to). The OA movement should resolutely push for Green OA; Green OA mandates should be formulated to ensure that compliance is by the party bound by the mandate (the fundee, if a funder mandate, the employee, if an institutional mandate). On no account should mandates rely on compliance by a 2nd party, the publisher, who is not bound by the mandate and has every interest in maintaining control over the content. There is a 3rd way in which articles can be made OA of course, other than by the author (or the author’s assigns) (Green) or by the publisher (Gold): It can be made OA by a 3rd party — either a user or a rival publisher or service provider. This is partly what the Elsevier/academia.edu kerfuffle is about, and it will no doubt spread to other 3rd party providers like ResearchGate, Mendeley and the like. (It also concerns versions, because Green OA usually involves only the author’s final draft whereas 3rd-party OA often involves the publisher’s proprietary version-of-record.) My advice to those who are up in arms about Elsevier’s take-down notice for 3rd-party service providers is to redirect your resentment toward doing something legal and feasible, namely, mandating and depositing the refereed, accepted author-draft in your institutional repository immediately upon acceptance, and making it OA as soon as your can (or wish). More here.
eLife Sciences: A button to ease the flow of knowledge. The pool of scientific knowledge is certainly powerful; it is the means by which we can eliminate disease, build rockets that take us to the moon and (as it’s the festive season) light up our Christmas trees. Now, a new project conceived by medical students David Carroll and Joseph McArthur is challenging this artificial barrier to knowledge. The Open Access Button is a tool that can be plugged into any Internet browser and used to record instances of knowledge restriction. You can find out how to quickly install it and use it here. Come up against a pay wall? With the OA Button you can register exactly when and where a ‘published’ paper is not being made public. This instance of restriction will then be added to a map, showcasing all of the occasions that someone has pressed the button. More and more of those occasions of ‘access denied’, of knowledge barriers are now laid bare. More here.
Scholarly Kitchen: What Does “Federally Funded” Actually Mean, by Angela Cochran? My years of avoiding all things Open Access (OA) are clearly over. We have been hearing about possible OA mandates for all federally funded papers for almost as long as we have been hearing that print “will be dead in 5 years”. Now that we are on the verge of a mandate and I have become our in-house expert on the topic, there is one detail that continues to confuse me. Under inevitable mandates, what constitutes a “federally funded” paper? The OSTP public access memo does little to define what it would consider a federally funded paper. It does mention “research that directly arises from Federal funds, as defined in relevant OMB circulars (e.g., A-21 and A-11).” I thought maybe those circulars would be helpful but I was wrong. One defines financial reporting for federal programs at universities and the other appears to be the actual federal budget. More here.
Open Access Archivangelism: OA’s Real Battle-Ground in 2014: The One-Year Embargo. The prediction that “It is almost certain that within the next few years most journals will become [Delayed] Gold (with an embargo of 12 months)” is an extrapolation and inference from the manifest pattern across the last half-decade:
- Journal publishers know (better than anyone) that OA is inevitable and unstoppable, only delayable (via embargoes).
- Journal publishers also know that it is the first year of sales that sustains their subscriptions. (The talk about later sales is just hyperbole.)
- Publishers have accordingly been fighting tooth and nail against Green OA mandates, by lobbying against Green OA Mandates, by embargoing Green OA, and by offering and promoting hybrid Gold OA.
- Although the majority of publishers (60%, including Elsevier and Springer) do not embargo Green OA, of the 40% that do embargo Green OA, most have a 1-year embargo.
- This 1-year embargo on Green is accordingly publishers’ reluctant but realistic compromise: It is an attempt to ward off immediate Green OA with minimal risk by trying to make institutions’ and funders’ Green mandates Delayed Green Mandates instead of Green OA Mandates.
- Then, as an added insurance against losing control of their content, more and more publishers are releasing online access themselves, on their own proprietary websites, a year after publication: Delayed Gold. More here.
Open Access Archivangelism: Immediate vs. Delayed Access. Bo-Christer Björk is quite right. The Elsevier study’s arbitrary (and somewhat self-serving) 6-category classification system (each of whose categories is curiously labelled a “publishing system”) leaves much to be desired. It is not just what Elsevier called “Gold Open Access” that was Gold Open Access, but also what they called “Subsidised.” The difference is merely that what they called Gold was publishing-fee-based Gold and what they called subsidized was subsidy-based Gold:
- Gold Open Access
- Open Archives
- Green Open Access: Pre-print versions
- Green Open Access: Accepted Author Manuscript versions. More.