Adding value to science – Open Access
There were four goals stated in the first blog post that are among the guiding principles of this new venture. Each goal serves to add value back to science.
Being Open Access is the first principle, and is one of the best methods to add value back to the scientific community (as well as the taxpayers who fund that research). The need for more voices in the Open Access movement is greater than ever, as many stakeholders seek to block government-mandated Open Access policies. Unless you’ve been marooned on an island for the past eight weeks, you will have undoubtedly heard of the debate raging both in the U.S. Congress and on the Internet about the SOPA bill. That bill is backed by many in the publishing industry, both directly (such as Elsevier) and indirectly through the Association of American Publishers. SOPA and other efforts to block Open Access (such as the Research ‘Works’ Act) are a threat to the advancement of science.
So let’s make some lemonade from the lemons going on about in the publishing world at the moment. While some publishers try to stop time to protect their business models through Acts of Congress, new players have the opportunity to innovate in the space they are neglecting. It’s a great time to start a new open access publishing company!
As a new venture, PeerJ can start with a blank slate – unencumbered by prior business decisions, product lines, or business models. Instead, PeerJ is creating a new business model based on a symbiotic relationship with the science community and lay public. It is ridiculous that Open Access to scientific content is not open by default. It actually shouldn’t have to be a goal, it should be expected. PeerJ aims to give value back.