Plan S may ‘consolidate power of big publishers’, academy warns | Times Higher Education (THE)

Speaking at London Book Fair, James Rivington, head of publications at the British Academy which funds humanities and social science research, said many journals run by learned societies may struggle to adapt to Plan S rules (which come into effect in January 2020) and may seek commercial alliances to survive….”

Plan S may ‘consolidate power of big publishers’, academy warns | Times Higher Education (THE)

Speaking at London Book Fair, James Rivington, head of publications at the British Academy which funds humanities and social science research, said many journals run by learned societies may struggle to adapt to Plan S rules (which come into effect in January 2020) and may seek commercial alliances to survive….”

Sci-Hub’s Business Model Scares Me

Debates and discussions about Sci-Hub’s effectiveness and utility leave me with a bad taste in my mouth. Outright defenses of it make me worryPromotion of it seems completely out of bounds. It’s a pirate site, yes, but there’s more to it, things that make it far more insidious than the Napster it’s often compared to. Yet, we continue to see Sci-Hub justified, rationalized, and normalized as if what it does is acceptable, even laudable….”

Sci-Hub’s Business Model Scares Me

Debates and discussions about Sci-Hub’s effectiveness and utility leave me with a bad taste in my mouth. Outright defenses of it make me worryPromotion of it seems completely out of bounds. It’s a pirate site, yes, but there’s more to it, things that make it far more insidious than the Napster it’s often compared to. Yet, we continue to see Sci-Hub justified, rationalized, and normalized as if what it does is acceptable, even laudable….”

Open access and Plan S: how Wellcome is tackling four key concerns | Wellcome

“What if high-quality journals don’t offer compliant routes – will they be off limits? …

Won’t researchers’ careers be disadvantaged, particularly early career researchers? …

Will international collaborations be threatened? …

Will learned societies be threatened by the loss of publication revenues? …”

Indian payment-for-papers proposal rattles scientists

“Indian scientists are criticizing a government proposal to pay graduate students who publish in select journals. They fear that it could degrade the quality of research and lead to an increase in scientific misconduct, by incentivizing publishing rather than good science….”

Nature boss warns Plan S could put journal out of business | Times Higher Education (THE)

“Springer Nature says highly selective titles need special treatment under European-led open access initiative….

The chief publishing officer of Nature’s parent company has warned that the flagship journal’s future could be imperilled if research funders do not make major changes to Plan S, the European-led open access initiative….

In its submission, Springer Nature argues that titles such as Nature should be treated as a special case under Plan S, highlighting that the use of in-house professional editors and its high refusal rate meant that average costs per article were estimated to be between €10,000 and €30,000 (£8,770 and £26,300), which would be “very difficult” to recover via an article processing charge. Having open access versions of articles available elsewhere would put “at risk” Springer Nature’s ability “to sustain these investments via the subscription model”. …

Asked whether there was a possibility that Nature could go out of business if Plan S was implemented widely without major changes, Mr Inchcoombe said: “Yes. I don’t know why libraries would pay for subscriptions if there are free, aggregated services of all the author-accepted versions of papers immediately available on multiple websites around the world – which these principles would enable.” …”

Taking Stock of the Feedback on Plan S Implementation Guidance – The Scholarly Kitchen

“I thought it might be useful to share some of the themes that I have observed emerging across the feedback documents. These are impressionistic and not a systematic analysis….

Theme 1: Clear support for the transition to open access and the goals of Plan S….

Theme 2: Concern that the implementation guidance reflects models that work for STEM but will negatively impact HSS scholars….

Theme 3: The technical requirements for publication, repository, and other platforms are poorly thought out….

Theme 4: The predicted effects on small, independent, and society publishers raise concerns for the viability of these publishers….

Theme 5: Setting a fair and reasonable APC sounds fair and reasonable but it is also likely impossible….

Theme 6: Scholars and organizations in the Global South object to being told what they want….

Theme 7: The timelines are not feasible….”

The Dark side of Sci-Hub | Medico musings…

“The problem is that , as cyber security experts say, they have never met a cyber criminal who gets into a database, takes only what is necessary and gets out. Chances are he looks around. Pilfers something else that might be of value. Or worse still leaves behind something nasty.( as of this writing, there is no evidence that Scihub or its partners have actually compromised the security of the universities with any malware).

Moreover when a password is hacked, the hacker has access to the bare minimum information in the database – for example a library database. The details such as username, age, gender, timing of visiting the library, date of joining, last visit taken, last book etc can be easily gotten. From then it is only a matter of social engineering to gain access to other portals – email, social media etc. It is also a matter of concern that some people have the same password for all their sites ! …

[P]ublishers [might] tighten access – perhaps a DRM (digital rights management) or two factor authentication might be introduced – so even if the passwords are stolen by phishing attacks/attacks on university, it will become harder to access the articles….

To make things worse, nothing in Russia can be done without the tacit approval of the government. It is  a well known fact that , as a price for such approval, the government/non governmental actors might want to be a ‘part’ of the project, presumably not to download science articles. She being a marked woman, with no other refuge, would have to yield to their pressure or face the music. People have disappeared for daring to disobey the non-governmental actors in Russia.

This is where the possibility of compromised passwords providing access to the university systems causes worry. However all of this remains conjecture – or the feverish imagination of jobless bloggers at the moment. (But who doesn’t love the bragging rights to ‘I told you so’ when a disaster strikes in the future).

There is also evidence that China has been downloading a lot more than the usual academic download – although for what purpose isn’t known. Also Iran is the third largest access site – that too, a small city in Iran, raising eyebrows about what is going on….”