From Google’s English: “What sounds like a success story has a dark backside, which was already visible last year when American librarians discovered that the leading scientific publishers, especially in the scientific, technical and medical fields, had equipped their online platforms with all the monitoring technologies for which are otherwise mainly the big Internet companies like Facebook and Google in the criticism. For example, if you take a closer look at the website of the renowned magazine “Nature”, you will come across dozens of corresponding tools: individual trackers that follow the page visitor, audience tools that combine data from many sources into profiles, finger printers that also identify users who want to prevent this through your browser settings….
The big science publishers have been turning away from the publishing industry for some time and towards the data analytics business. Similar to the Internet corporations, they use the big profits in their area to buy the market empty of alternatives and to incorporate more and more areas of the research cycle in the same way as they have already done with publications. A milestone in this was the contract that Elsevier-Verlag was able to secure in the Netherlands: all scientists should be able to publish Open Access without additional costs in the publication area if the universities in return license the publisher’s research information systems….
The embarrassment of the other publishers, the uncertainties in the libraries and the lack of foresight in the universities block solutions here. The thing is clear for a society that still wants to call itself an open society. The oligopoly of science publishers must be regulated just like that of other oligopolies. The upcoming Basic Platform Law offers a possibility for regulation at the European level. And at the national level, science organizations are called upon to stop the sell-off of science. Many good suggestions have long been on the table. It’s time to act.”