October 29, 2012
First up, we have an excellent video on What is open access? by Nick Shockey and Jonathan Eisen. It’s a nice introduction that takes us through the world of open access publishing:
And here’s this week’s roundup of Open Access stories from around the InterWeb:
The OA Interviews: Ian Gibson, former Chairman of the UK House of Commons Science & Technology Committee
However, one of the more interesting but less celebrated events in the history of OA is surely the 2004 Inquiry into scientific publication conducted by the UK House of Commons Science & Technology Committee. The inquiry seems particularly noteworthy in the wake of this year’scontroversialFinch Report, and the new OA policy that Research Councils UK (RCUK) announced in response.
PubMed Central or OA Central — More Strange Behaviors at PMC and NLM Paint a Portrait of Biases and Poor Process
Questions linger about PMC’s management and role, questions both large and small. There are questions specific to PMC being the primary publisher of eLife content. There are questions about the process — its rigor, its fairness, its disconnects — around PubMed and PMC indexing and inclusion. There are questions around whether PMC has drifted off its moorings and into OA waters, creating an environment of favoritism and political action that’s inappropriate given its remit. And there are questions about PMC using government infrastructure to play a hand in the commercial publishing technology market.
Self regulation of learning is thought to be a characteristic of individual students (Beishuizen, 2008) but increasingly can be contextualised within social learning environments. A number of collaborative and social networking tools regularly play a role within the average student PLE. Self regulation has been shown to enhance and improve learning outcomes (Paris & Byrnes, 1989; Steffens, 2008), enabling learners to achieve their full potential (Delfino et al, 2008). Personal technologies are thought to enable self-regulation at a number of levels, including the ‘object’ and ‘meta’ levels of learning, supporting maintenance, adaptation, monitoring and control of a variety of higher level cognitive processes (Nelson & Narens, 1990). By using personal devices as ‘mindtools’ to offload simple cognitive tasks, students can extend their own memories (Jonassen et al, 1999), build their confidence, and increase their motivation levels (Goldsworthy et al, 2006). Further, personal devices enable individuals to gain access and to participate at many levels within their communities of practice, from ‘entering by learning’ through to ‘transcending by developing’ (Ryberg & Christiansen, 2008). All of this is often achieved by students outside the formal surroundings of school or university, with no time or location constraints.
The scholarly communication system has been in serious difficulties for several decades now, a problem generally referred to as the “serials crisis”. The nub of the issue is that the price of scholarly journals has consistently risen faster than the consumer price index. This has seen research libraries increasingly struggle to meet the costs of subscribing to all the journals their researchers need.
On Thursday, 25 October, hundreds of Internet Archive supporters, volunteers, and staff celebrated addition of the 10,000,000,000,000,000th byte to the Archive’s massive collections.
I’m going to ask questions. They are questions I don’t know the answers to – maybe I am ignorant in which case please comment with information, or maybe the “Open Access Community” doesn’t know the answers. Warning: I shall probably be criticized by some of the mainstream “OA Community”. Please try to read beyond any rhetoric.
In celebration of Open Access Week I have created a list of my favorite open access science resources. Many of these resources provide full-text or links to full-text if available but a few are only bibliographic in nature.
One in three authors (32%) had already published in an open access journal. The highest proportion of open access authors came from a medical background (28%), closely followed by biological sciences (24%), and 71% were based in an academic setting. In contrast, authors who had not published open access papers predominantly came from social science disciplines.
This is a series of posts critiquing the trend towards adopting a particular CC license as a standard for open access. My own views are that we don’t know what the best approach for sharing scholarly and other types of work will be in the future, and cannot know until we spend some time thinking and trying things out. By “time”, I mean decades, or centuries. This view is expressed most clearly in the post Articulating the commons: a leaderful approach. This topic is also addressed, although not in full, in the defense draft of my thesis Freedom for Scholarship in the Internet Age (see the open access chapter and the conclusion).