Peer Reviewed Online Journal Launching

from the good-news dept

Over the years we’ve had a few different stories about the debate over whether or not peer-reviewed journals should put their materials online for free. The argument in favor of it, of course, is that the information benefits the public and can lead to even better scientific advances if more people have access to it. Furthermore, much of the research is funded by public sources anyway, suggesting that the information belongs in the public domain. The other side of the debate is that it costs money to produce a high-quality journal (though, the recent physics journal debacle suggests these expensive journals aren’t as high quality as they’d like you to believe). Now, according to the NY Times, a group of scientists are getting ready to launch a free online peer-reviewed journal for anyone to access. While it does have some big names backing it, there are still some hurdles to overcome. The big question is whether or not scientists will believe it has enough prestige to bother publishing there, instead of with the established journals. There’s also the question of the “publishing fee”. Since there are no subscription fees, this new journal is expecting the scientists to cough up the money themselves to pay for having their research peer-reviewed and published. It’s interesting to see this being announced right after Larry Lessig’s Creative Commons is launched.

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