Posts Tagged ‘Science communication’

Journals now hinder the dissemination of scientific information

June 7, 2012

Dienekes’ Anthropology BlogThis is a reblog of a post by Dienekes on his Anthropology blog.

A case well made though I would suggest that it is “dissemination” that is being hindered and that any hindrance of “scientific progress” is collateral damage. But I suspect that the role of journals in scientific dissemination is in transition and the scientific community has yet to exploit, come to terms with or understand the potential of open access. However I do not believe – as Dienekes does – that the solution lies in government coercion – we have enough of that already. The solution will – I think – come from the technology itself. The possibility to disseminate widely will lead to “open access” truly becoming open access. It is already noticeable that the more enlightened scientists – and I would suggest they are the better scientists – all run their own blogs and open themselves up to much wider scrutiny than that available through pay-walled journals.  I also note in passing that “plagiarism” is a scientific crime only because copyright is “violated” or because an individual is trying to get undue credit. But plagiarism – unlike faking data or cherry-picking data – does not necessarily hinder scientific progress (which must necessarily build on the shoulders of those who went before – even if they were not giants and only unacknowledged pygmies).

How journals once facilitated and now hinder scientific progress.


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