Language of Protest

All six editors and all 31 editorial board members of Lingua, one of the top journals in linguistics, last week resigned to protest Elsevier's policies on pricing and its refusal to convert the journal to an open-access publication that would be free online.
This might be the beginning of an interesting trend …
  • Here is a piece on the issue from Wired
  • And here is a piece in German from Uli Herb

Jonas Kaiser and Benedikt Fecher on #academicblogs

In a substantial analysis of over 500 German-speaking science blogs, Jonas Kaiser and Benedikt Fecher look at what hyperlinks are used within prominent science blogs to investigate how scientists link to each other and outside sources. Using visualisation and mapping software, their results show how science blogs form new networks beyond traditional disciplines and interact with the wider general blogosphere.

Prof, nobody is reading you

On average a journal article is read by 10 people. 82 per cent of articles published in humanities are not even cited once. Only 20 per cent of papers cited have actually been read. Is our system broke?

Knowledge infrastructures in science: data, diversity, and digital libraries

Unfortunately hidden behind a paywall. Borgman et al.'s new article on the necessity for digital libraries to manage research data. From the abstract:
This article addresses the role of digital libraries in knowledge infrastructures for science, presenting evidence from long-term studies of four research sites. Findings are based on interviews (n=208), ethnographic fieldwork, document analysis, and historical archival research about scientific data practices, conducted over the course of more than a decade.

‘My professor demands to be listed as an author on many of my papers’

This is kind of the key point in this piece: reputation matters hugely to scientists, but only with regards to the number of papers you publish (which is why people steal authorship) or (in the best case) how good the research is. However, we don’t care whether a scientist has a reputation for being honest or rigorous because it gets you nowhere in the current model of academia. And yet honesty and rigour is what science is all about.

Reputation instead of obligation: forging new policies to motivate academic data sharing

Despite strong support from funding agencies and policy makers academic data sharing sees hardly any adoption among researchers. Current policies that try to foster academic data sharing fail, as they try to either motivate researchers to share for the common good or force researchers to publish their data. Instead, Sascha Friesike, Benedikt Fecher, Marcel Hebing, and Stephanie Linek argue that in order to tap into the vast potential that is attributed to academic data sharing we need to forge new policies that follow the guiding principle reputation instead of obligation.