Saturday, July 5, 2008

Open access, under attack

I like open access. In my opinion, the serials crisis is an absolute travesty and, despite my 'capitalist' instincts, the spectacle of huge companies making profits from the efforts of academics who (a) are not in the companies' employ and (b) are funded (largely) by taxpayers, utterly disgusts me. So it rather pisses me off that the august Nature magazine (which, I should note, I have difficulty accessing because my institution can't afford the subscription fee) has published a bloody screed against PLoS, the best known open access suite of journals. The screed opens thusly:
Public Library of Science (PLoS), the poster child of the open-access publishing movement, is following an haute couture model of science publishing — relying on bulk, cheap publishing of lower quality papers to subsidize its handful of high-quality flagship journals.
Sigh. I'd respond myself, but I doubt I could be objective. Luckily, Living the Scientific Live has criticized the article at length and Blog Around the Clock has compiled a list of blog reactions.

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