http://science.slashdot.org/article.pl?sid=09/05/09/1514235 This just in from Slashdot: "Last week, we learned about Elsevier publishing a bogus journal for Merck. Now, several librarians say that they have uncovered an entire imprint of 'advertorial' publications. Excerpta Medica, a 'strategic medical communications agency,' is an Elsevier division. Along with the now infamous Australasian Journal of Bone and Joint Medicine, it published a number of other 'journals.' Elsevier CEO Michael Hansen now admits that at least six fake journals were published for pharmaceutical companies."
Elsevier, of course, is the for-pay science publisher whose journals cost so much and are packaged in such a cutthroat way that they are gobbling up the budgets of libraries, crowding out publications from university presses. Bad science at top dollar. This MUST end!
And one way we can contribute to its ending is by being more responsible intellectuals in the world. This is why, even in my most traditional English course this semester "Early American Novels and Other Fictions"I made a contribution to public knowledge a course requirement. My students added excellent, responsible content to Wikipedia essays, made corrections, and in other ways took seriously themselves as intellectuals who were able to make sound determinations, a skill we need to teach even young children so they are less susceptible not only to the fallacies of the Internet but even to such things as refereed for-profit journals that turn out to be fake.
My friend Paolo passes on this interesting link from high energy physics: http://scoap3.org/. Citizen science! Citizen intellectuals! Citizen humanists! HASTAC citizens! Unite! (All we have to lose are our chains, or something catchy like that . . .)