In January of 2012 a British mathematician posted a humble invitation on his blog for fellow academics and researchers to join him in boycotting the prestigious research publisher Elsevier. Citing high prices, exploitative bundling practices, and lobbying efforts to prevent open access to research, the mathematician publicly denounced Elsevier and refused to do business with them in the future.
Eighteen months later almost 14,000 researchers have joined the boycott of Elsevier, kicking off what's been referred to as the Academic Spring movement.
But despite the effort, closed academic journals continue to be a frustration for professors and researchers in the digital age. Alternatives to closed journals are becoming more common, but growth is slow, and some fields are more welcoming to open access than others.
Enter Academia.edu, a topic agnostic platform for researchers to share their work, connect with peers, and present an entire corpus of their research, completely open and completely free.
Today's guest Richard Price launched Academia.edu after encountering his own frustrations with the world of closed publishing as a student and researcher of philosophy. He recently spoke with David Weinberger about how the platform is facing up against for-profit journals.