On open access issues

The excellent "Open and Shut?" blog recently featured an interview with the chairwoman of the second Budapest open access initiative meeting. The post gives a quick overview of the year's developments and the problems with the latest Gold open access proposals. It seems that the extra funds the UK government has pledged will only serve to fatten the bottom line of commercial publishers. We've written about the open access movement with my friend and colleague Jani Kotakoski in Finnish, first to the University of Helsinki social work and policy student magazine Kajahdus, then briefly to the May 2012 issue Yliopisto magazine, and finally in a bit more depth to the 2/2012 issue of the magazine of the Association of Finnish Science Editors and Journalists (page 20).

We're definitely following the issue actively and will try to find new venues to continue to coverage.

Another related issue is the problem of predatory open access publishers: basically scammers and spammers who set up fake journals, solicit submissions from unsuspecting scientists, and then try to charge them exorbitant fees. There was a recent column in Nature on the topic. The issue clearly has been getting worse all the time: publication and conference spam arrive almost daily. See also the interview of open access publisher Ahmed Hindawi in the next post. My first published article was in Hindawi's Journal of Nanoscience and Nanotechnology.

Incidentally, I'll be attending the Open Knowledge festival on Wednesday, when most of the talks in the Open Research and Education topic stream are held.