Category Archives: politics

Replace Francis Collins as NIH Director

Dear President Elect Trump, I am writing in regards to media reports that Francis Collins is campaigning to retain his position as NIH Director. For decades the NIH has been the premier funding agency in the world, fueling the rise of the US as the undisputed powerhouse of global science. But in his eight years in […]

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NIH Director Francis Collins’ ridiculous “We would have had an Ebola vaccine if the NIH were fully funded” meme

Almost as soon as the African Ebola epidemic hit the headlines, NIH Director Francis Collins was making the rounds arguing that we would have had an Ebola vaccine by now, if only Congress hadn’t slashed the NIH budget. Lest you think I’m taking his words out of context, here is what he said to a House Energy […]

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FIRST of all, THIS is why you should never trust publishers

When President Obama announced last year that he was requiring federal agencies that fund science to develop policies to make papers arising from the work they publish freely available to the public, major subscription-based publishers responded in a generally favorable manner – reflecting the extent to which they had drawn the White House back from more aggressive […]

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A CHORUS of boos: publishers offer their “solution” to public access

As expected, a coalition of subscription based journal publishers has responded to the White House’s mandate that federal agencies develop systems to make the research they fund available to public by offering to implement the system themselves. This system, which they call CHORUS (for ClearingHouse for the Open Research of the United Status) would set up […]

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Apotheosis of cynicism and deceit from scholarly publishers

The Association of American Publishers, who lobby on behalf of most for-profit and society scholarly publishers, have long opposed moves to make the scientific literature more readily available to the public. But, as open access publishing has gained traction and funders increasingly demand free access to the work they fund, the AAP’s defense of the […]

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WTF? The University of California sides with publishers against the public

The University of California system spends nearly $40 million every year to buy access to academic journals, even though many of the articles are written, reviewed, and edited by UC professors. So you’d think the cash-strapped UC system would leap to back any effort to undermine the absurd science publishing system. You’d think. But you’d […]

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No celebrations here: why the White House public access policy is bad for open access

I am taking a lot of flak from my friends in the open access community about my sour response to the White House’s statement on public access to papers arising from federally-funded scientific research. While virtually everyone in the open access movement is calling for “celebration” of this “landmark” event, I see a huge missed […]

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For patents, against open access: The sad state of university leadership

Quick. Name a leader of a major research university who has taken a courageous stand on any important issue in the last decade. I know they’re out there. They must be. But I can’t think of one. Instead, I’m left dumfounded reading this amicus brief filed in a case – Bowman v. Monsanto – about […]

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The Association of American Publishers are a bunch of complete and total fu*kheads

It didn’t take long following the introduction of the Fair Access to Science and Technology Research Act of 2013 (FASTR) for Dr. Evil The Association of American Publishers to respond. As if trying to outdo themselves, this latest anti-open access screed contains more misleading statements and outright lies than their previous efforts to undermine public […]

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Xenophobic scientific publishers: open access aids foreign enemies

The American Association of Publishers and the anti-open access DC Principles group have sent letters to both houses of Congress outlining why they oppose the Federal Research Public Access Act, which would make the results of all federally funded research publicly available. They largely trot out the same tired “not all publishers are alike, so don’t impose […]

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