Researchers revolt against Elsiever
WIRED, 30 January 2012
For years, the open science movement has sought to light a fire about the “closed” journal-publication system. In the last few weeks their efforts seemed to have ignited a broader flame, driven mainly, it seems, by the revelation that one of the most resented publishers, Elsevier, was backing the Research Works Act — some tomfoolery I noted in Congress Considers Paywalling Science You Already Paid For, on January 6. Now, 24 days later, scientists are pledging by the hundred to not cooperate with Elsevier in any way — refusing to publish in its journals, referee its papers, or do the editorial work that researchers have been supplying to journals without charge for decades — and the rebellion is repeatedly reaching the pages of the New York Times and Forbes.
In my feature I speculated whether librarians who would eventually lead the charge. But Jason Hoyt, then of Mendeley and now of OpenRePub, seemed to have it closer: the revolution awaited only the researchers. In what is easily the biggest surge the open-science movement has ever put on, a growing list of researchers is publicly pledging against Elsevier. At The Cost of Knowledge, a site created this purpose, there were 1400 signatories last night, and when I woke today at 5 a.m., over 1600. The thing seems to be snowballing. Some have ached to take action for years. Others are newly radicalized. Together, their stated reasons form a sort of first-person dramatization of the issues I explored in “Free Science.” A skim through their testiomony (below the jump here) is an education in why the call for open science is going mainstream:
Phi Beta Iota: This is of course the whole point of creating the World Brain and Global Game, to achieve precisely the efficiencies and zero resistance to multinational information-sharing and sense-making that we have been advocating since 1988 in various forms, since 1995 in Smart Nation and World Brain forms. Open Government, Open Economy, Open Society — it is all coming as a tsunami of cultural change.