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Peter Suber
Works at Harvard Office for Scholarly Communication
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Peter Suber

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Changing my practice with G+ and Twitter.

This is more than anyone wants to know, but I'm posting it for the record.

For the past few years I've used online services to forward my G+ posts automatically to Twitter. Starting today, I'll no longer do that. When I want to repeat the gist of a G+ post on Twitter, I'll tweet it manually.

The old system created three kinds of problems. First, every G+-to-Twitter service I tried was occasionally down or broken. Second, even when they worked, they only forwarded my posts after unpredictable delays. Sometimes the delay was so long that I thought the service was down and manually tweeted a version of a post, only to see the forwarded version arrive a bit later. Then I looked like an idiot who tweeted the same message twice in a row. This happened with my last three public G+ posts, and triggered my decision to pull the plug. Third, it cramped my style, and made me worry about how my G+ posts would look when truncated into tweets. It also prevented me from composing tweets to take best advantage of the character limit.

Over the years I've used several G+-to-Twitter services. The most recent was Friends+me. An earlier one used a two-stage mashup, first converting my G+ posts to an RSS feed, through Gplusrss, and then converting the RSS items to tweets, through Feedburner.

I still like G+ better than Twitter and will use it when I have more than a tweet's worth to say. But Google has been making G+ less and less friendly to individual authors like me, as opposed to communities and collections, and may change that.

Related: About a month ago, the number of my Twitter followers exceeded the number of my G+ followers. (I wish it were the other way around.)

If you follow me on G+, thank you and please stick around! On Twitter I'm @petersuber.

#googleplus #google+ #twitter

Chip Cooper's profile photoAmanda Page's profile photoPeter Suber's profile photo
+Amanda Page No, I don't know offhand. But I do know that Google Takeout applies to G+. Hence you can download or export your G+ data for separate preservation any time you want.

But in fact I'm not much worried about G+ data loss. Even if Google drops G+ (which I'm NOT predicting), I suspect it will keep it or an archive of it online. The rationale for doing so would be very close to the rationale for hosting Google-digitized books (even though the digitization itself has stopped), the rationale for hosting and growing the Google Cache, and its rationale for saving Usenet and converting it to the first generation of Google Groups.

BTW, I was not trying to persuade anyone to leave G+. On the contrary, I'd like to persuade more people to come, or stay, and persuade Google to show its earlier enthusiasm for improving it.
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Peter Suber

G+ General Help  - 
In the older version of the G+ Profile, we could use italics, links, and other kinds of formatting. In the current version, either this is impossible or the commands are hidden. Does anyone know which it is? If it's the second, can anyone point me to the commands?
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It will be, very soon
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Peter Suber

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Gates Foundation pressuring journals or vice versa?

See Richard Van Noorden, "Gates Foundation research can’t be published in top journals," Nature, January 13, 2017.

Background: The 2014 Gates Foundation OA policy put publishers on notice that in 2017 it would require immediate or unembargoed OA under CC-BY for articles arising from Gates-funded research. Some top journals don't allow that today. Will the foundation back down in order to let its grantees publish in those journals, will publishers back down in order to publish Gates-funded research, or neither?

Richard asked me for a comment, and I sent more than he could use. He used some of it (thanks, Richard), but here's my full comment.


I predict that the Gates Foundation won't compromise. The journals ought to compromise, and I predict that they will.

Something similar happened when the NIH policy became mandatory in 2008. It allowed embargoes up to 12 months, and didn't require open licenses. By Gates standards, the NIH policy is weak. But if you recall, many publishers at the time were very unwilling to accommodate it, and very vocal in their opposition. However, the NIH allowed no exceptions, and told grantees that if the publisher they had in mind wouldn't allow OA on the NIH's terms, then they must look for another publisher. Before long, all publishers came around.

Essentially, the NIH forced publishers to choose between accommodating the new policy and refusing to publish the large volume of high-quality research by NIH-funded authors. Not a single surveyed publisher has chosen to refuse to publish NIH-funded authors.

Nor have any of the accommodating publishers gone out of business as a result. Some have continued to make obscene profits. In 2011, three years after the NIH policy became mandatory, the Nature Publishing Group said it detected no harm to its bottom line and positively encouraged compliance, just as it had positively encouraged green OA since 2005.

Before publishers began accommodating the NIH policy, I don't recall researchers protesting that it would bar them from publishing in the journals of their choice. Even if they thought it would, they evidently preferred to be funded.

The Gates Foundation will put publishers to the same choice between accommodating the policy and refusing to publish Gates-funded researchers. In 2008, some publishers might have taken the second course, but I doubt that any will do so today. Even if some do, I believe that their resistance won't last long, if only because researchers will prefer to be funded.

Publishers might want to resist OA, or unembargoed libre OA, but in the end they must go where the authors are. Authors might want to publish in journals that are high in both quality and prestige, but in the end they must go where the funding is. Authors will find that path easier to take when they realize that many high-quality journals, OA and non-OA, accommodate the Gates policy. They'll find it easier still when promotion and tenure committees catch up with history and stop creating the perverse incentive to choose journal brand over quality and access.

Research funders are in a key position to change the behavior of authors and publishers, and the Gates Foundation is one funder that really wants to create change.

Moreover, it's a charity that funds research it finds useful or beneficial. Its interest is to make the results available as widely and easily as possible. It has no reason to compromise, and every reason not to.

That's the outcome I predict. But I can add that it's also the most desirable outcome. In 2008, the NIH did the right thing to force publisher accommodation, and in 2017 the time has (long since) come for funders to force publishers to the next level.

cc +Gates Foundation

#oa #openaccess #gates_foundation
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Thanks for sharing this. I suspect you're right about the end result, and that it's good news.
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Association of American Publishers tell Trump that pubs "are leaders in promoting public access policies that benefit science and society."

You have to admire the AAP for picking up Trump's style. "Nobody respects women more than I do."

#oa #openaccess #aap #trump #fud
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Peter Suber

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The +Chronicle of Higher Education just published a piece on "how 50 years of the information age transformed college forever" and didn't mention #openaccess.

#oa #openaccess 
How 50 years of the information age transformed college forever.
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Peter Suber

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Kudos to the U of Arkansas for its #oer incentives.

"To encourage faculty to move from high cost textbooks to open educational resources (OER), the University Libraries and the Global Campus offer incentives to faculty of $3000 to adopt OER open access course materials or $7500 to create OER open access course materials."

#oa #openaccess #oer #incentives

cc +University of Arkansas
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The Harvard Open Access Project (HOAP) is looking for a paid summer intern.

HOAP is based at +The Berkman Klein Center for Internet & Society, and all our work fosters open access to research. See the project home page for more details.

Many other Berkman Klein projects are also looking for paid summer interns. Please spread the word and help all these projects find great people.

#oa #openaccess #hoap 
We are now accepting applications for our 2017 Summer Internship Program! More information is below, and the application deadline for all students for summer 2017 is Monday, February 13, 2017 at 11:59 p.m. ET We are looking forward to engaging a diverse group of students who are interested in ...
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BKC is a great place to grow your skills as an intern...if you are interested in #OA or other innovative ideas, I recommend applying! 
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Peter Suber

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Glad to see that #openaccess (and my book, made it to this list.

Want to know what you need to know? An MIT Press series on "Essential Knowledge" selects those topics, particularly in technology and science.
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Peter Suber

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The Ottawa Citizen got a bottom-feeding journal to publish an editorial denouncing itself.

Excerpts from the editorial, after some initial discussion of the biology of the freshwater white sucker:

"New techniques seem to be evolving almost every day, from polymerase chain reaction to phrenology and to purified chicanery....The example of the white suckers that are born every minute is emblematic of journals like this. In the ecosystem of scientific academia, as in nature, there must be a natural balance in the structure of predation. Predators consume that which is presented to them. In a not dissimilar way, journals partake of the opportunity to welcome the little fishes of the publishing world in with gently smiling -- oh, you know the rest. The optimism of the poet Dante (“Lasciate ogne speranza, voi ch'intrate”) is appropriate here....It is important to regard the meretricious conduct of our many journals which fulfill the role of C. lupus in ruminant clothing.... If the dopiness of open-access journals like this one is not sufficient to prove their character, then their devotion to self-aggrandizement and malodor are strong indicators of the way forward....Researchers may conveniently park any ethics at the door."

Here's the newspaper's account of its sting.

Here's the editorial itself in its natural habitat (still online).

In case the journal takes the editorial offline, here's a copy in the Internet Archive's Wayback Machine.

The editorial was published in the Journal of Applied Molecular Cell Biology.

The journal publisher is the Intellectual Consortium of Drug Discovery and Technology Development (ICDTD), based in Saskatoon, Saskatchewan.

The Ottawa Citizen reports that ICDTD "publishes using the logo and links of the Indian company OMICS International" and is "affiliated with OMICS, but not owned by it."

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Update. As predicted, the Journal of Applied Molecular Cell Biology has taken down the self-denouncing editorial it never bothered to read before publication. - Update: Our editorial slamming the very 'predatory' journal that published it has been removed — but you can still read it here

But a copy has been preserved at the Internet Archive. See the URL above. 
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Exposé shows need for the rest of us to make up for Santa's shortcomings.

Where were the elves?

#northpoledecline, #alt-santa, #mythbusted
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Christmas shopping in the Boston area? Consider a ticket to a calligraphy workshop.

Disclaimer: Yes, they're taught by my daughter, +Molly Suber Thorpe (@PlurabelleMolly). But don't take my word that she's a pro. Read some of these testimonials about her workshops...

...or about her book.

#calligraphy #prouddad

Buy tickets to modern calligraphy workshops, order custom rubber stamps, and download calligraphy vector packs
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A cheating service whose writers are "very proficient in British."

Now and then I stumble across an online cheating service, for example because one of its custom-written term papers uses a word or phrase for which I'm searching. (Search engines can often discover these papers, like closed-access journal articles, even when users can't read the full texts without paying.) I've always been struck by how brazenly they advertise their wares. They don't usually spell out their sales pitch, since for the deliberate visitor it goes without saying. But I just stumbled across one that does spell it out. Quoting verbatim:

"Uniqueness, good and high quality common are just some of the things which the institution entry evaluators and professors try to find. That is why, there are plenty of college students who request us- « write my essay », are grateful that the answer will be lastly available here.

"Our essay freelance writers are very proficient in British which is the most superior language utilized in most educational institutions for forms. We can easily ensure your purchase will likely be free from any grammatical and spelling problems. In accordance with your very own essentials and details...."

Yes, this is laughable until you realize that it doesn't have to fool students who are moderately strong in English.

The domain <> seems to be a legitimate site on open data in upper Normandy. I can't tell why it posted this sleaze. (Does anyone know?) If it posted the full text for the same reason I'm quoting snippets, it offers no explanation.

#cheating, #plagiarism

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This would be laughable if it wasn't such a serious topic. I'm practically speechless, caveat emptor? A 'bad grade' is better than an incomplete?! I'm dumbfounded.
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I work for the free circulation of science and scholarship in every field and language. In practice that means research, writing, organizing, and pro bono consulting for open access to research. I wear several hats:
I'm the founder of the Open Access Tracking Project, co-founder of the Open Access Directory, and co-developer of TagTeam.

My latest books are Knowledge Unbound (MIT Press, 2016) and Open Access (MIT Press, 2012). Both are OA. Also see my other writings on open access, my writings on topics other than open access, and my section of the Harvard institutional repository.

For more detail, see my home page.

I blog at G+ and tweet as @petersuber. I don't use FB or LinkedIn at all. 

Most of my G+ posts are about open access (OA), but most of what I want to share about OA doesn't yet make it to G+. I tag new OA developments for the Open Access Tracking Project (OATP). You can follow complete versions of the OATP feed on the web or by RSS, Atom, JSONP, or email. There are also Twitter and G+ versions of the feed, but unfortunately they are both abridged (details here and here respectively). 
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