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      Is Open Access

      Is Biblioleaks Inevitable?

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          Abstract

          In 2014, the vast majority of published biomedical research is still hidden behind paywalls rather than open access. For more than a decade, similar restrictions over other digitally available content have engendered illegal activity. Music file sharing became rampant in the late 1990s as communities formed around new ways to share. The frequency and scale of cyber-attacks against commercial and government interests has increased dramatically. Massive troves of classified government documents have become public through the actions of a few. Yet we have not seen significant growth in the illegal sharing of peer-reviewed academic articles. Should we truly expect that biomedical publishing is somehow at less risk than other content-generating industries? What of the larger threat—a “Biblioleaks” event—a database breach and public leak of the substantial archives of biomedical literature? As the expectation that all research should be available to everyone becomes the norm for a younger generation of researchers and the broader community, the motivations for such a leak are likely to grow. We explore the feasibility and consequences of a Biblioleaks event for researchers, journals, publishers, and the broader communities of doctors and the patients they serve.

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          Most cited references 33

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          The polarizing impact of science literacy and numeracy on perceived climate change risks

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            Who's afraid of peer review?

             John Bohannon (2013)
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              Anatomy of open access publishing: a study of longitudinal development and internal structure

              Background Open access (OA) is a revolutionary way of providing access to the scholarly journal literature made possible by the Internet. The primary aim of this study was to measure the volume of scientific articles published in full immediate OA journals from 2000 to 2011, while observing longitudinal internal shifts in the structure of OA publishing concerning revenue models, publisher types and relative distribution among scientific disciplines. The secondary aim was to measure the share of OA articles of all journal articles, including articles made OA by publishers with a delay and individual author-paid OA articles in subscription journals (hybrid OA), as these subsets of OA publishing have mostly been ignored in previous studies. Methods Stratified random sampling of journals in the Directory of Open Access Journals (n = 787) was performed. The annual publication volumes spanning 2000 to 2011 were retrieved from major publication indexes and through manual data collection. Results An estimated 340,000 articles were published by 6,713 full immediate OA journals during 2011. OA journals requiring article-processing charges have become increasingly common, publishing 166,700 articles in 2011 (49% of all OA articles). This growth is related to the growth of commercial publishers, who, despite only a marginal presence a decade ago, have grown to become key actors on the OA scene, responsible for 120,000 of the articles published in 2011. Publication volume has grown within all major scientific disciplines, however, biomedicine has seen a particularly rapid 16-fold growth between 2000 (7,400 articles) and 2011 (120,900 articles). Over the past decade, OA journal publishing has steadily increased its relative share of all scholarly journal articles by about 1% annually. Approximately 17% of the 1.66 million articles published during 2011 and indexed in the most comprehensive article-level index of scholarly articles (Scopus) are available OA through journal publishers, most articles immediately (12%) but some within 12 months of publication (5%). Conclusions OA journal publishing is disrupting the dominant subscription-based model of scientific publishing, having rapidly grown in relative annual share of published journal articles during the last decade.
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                Author and article information

                Contributors
                Journal
                J Med Internet Res
                JMIR
                Journal of Medical Internet Research
                JMIR Publications Inc. (Toronto, Canada )
                1439-4456
                1438-8871
                April 2014
                22 April 2014
                : 16
                : 4
                Affiliations
                1Centre for Health Informatics Australian Institute of Health Innovation The University of New South Wales SydneyAustralia
                2Center for Biomedical Informatics Harvard Medical School Boston, MAUnited States
                3Children’s Hospital Informatics Program Harvard-MIT Health Sciences and Technology Boston Children’s Hospital Boston, MAUnited States
                Author notes
                Corresponding Author: Adam G Dunn a.dunn@ 123456unsw.edu.au
                Article
                v16i4e112
                10.2196/jmir.3331
                4019771
                24755534
                ©Adam G Dunn, Enrico Coiera, Kenneth D Mandl. Originally published in the Journal of Medical Internet Research (http://www.jmir.org), 22.04.2014.

                This is an open-access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution License ( http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/2.0/), which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work, first published in the Journal of Medical Internet Research, is properly cited. The complete bibliographic information, a link to the original publication on http://www.jmir.org/, as well as this copyright and license information must be included.

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