I found this very interesting reading. And convincing. One point not dsicussed in the Open review section of the ms is that of authority. It can be intimidating for junior scientists to comment on papers authored by Dr Famous, especially if the junior one disagrees with some of the methods/analyses/conclusions. I know, a researcher shouldn't have to be nervous, but in real life that can be a real issue. I bet this is something that the authors have discussed among themselves, but for good reasons chose not include in the ms. But perhaps they could consider mentioning something about authority. I was nervous the first times I reviewed, and I know many colleagues that felt/feel the same.
Maybe it's just a consequence of the way our current system is designed, and it may not be an issue in the future culture of scholarly publishing. But it could well be an issue in the transient phase. Any thoughts on how the scientific community could best deal with this side of open review? Could the first (few) reviews a person does be anonymous (if so desired)? I don't have much of a solution, and as I've stated maybe this will not be an issue once all reviews are open. Then junior scientists would be able to see how senior people do their reviews as well...
you address an important part of scientific publishing, and I agree with what you have presented there. However, there are (at least) two problems that I find cropping up time and again with virtually all beyond-traditional-publishing initiatives: weeding and geekyness.
Weeding the huge amount of unreliable, post hoc speculative, incompetent, uninformed or simply unscientific "contributions" to science is a non-trivial task. Following MacArthur's dictum of "You can either keep up with or contribute to the scientific literature.", I simply do not have the time to follow blogs and twitter and about a dozen pre-print outlets and early-views and "traditional" eTOCs and F1000 and so forth, PLUS then giving out points for what I perceive as "good" articles. Without pressing the virtual "Like it"-button, however, no weeding is achieved, and the pile of new (and largely unreflected and poorly crafted) contributions grows faster and faster.
Geekyness is the technical problem attached to weeding. I might be able to programme in C++, but that does not make me wanting to set up a "working" environment that constantly flashes new information at me. I cannot be asked to have SVN and github installed, LaTeX and Markdown, maintain a blog and be forced to use specific formats when submitting to a traditional journal.
I find the rigor of current ecological science wanting, much more than its dissemination formats.
Best wishes, Carsten
You make the case for the four pillars independently. Are there dependencies or inter-dependencies to consider? What about timescales for building these pillars - are they all the same? While I hope you are right about moving towards universal acceptance of open access, is this not premature? Might the development of any one of the four pillars assist or hinder the speed of progress towards universal open access?
A quick technical comment: the abstract on this page has a content duplication problem.
The first part, "With the rise of electronic publishing and the inherent paradigm shifts ......a publication formula that arose in the 1600s. It has served its purpose admirably and well, but it is time to move forward."
And the second part, "With the rise of the Internet, scholarly publishing has embraced electronic distribution. ......the existing system arose in the 1600s, and though it has served its purpose admirably and well, it is time to move forward."
But the abstract in the PDF is OK.
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