A journal’s editorial board has been left on the brink of resignation after an eight-month standoff with its publisher Taylor & Francis over the publication of a debate on academic publishing and the profits made by major firms.
The debate, in the journal Prometheus: Critical Studies in Innovation, was due to appear last September, but was delayed by Taylor & Francis and published only at the end of last month.
Its “proposition” paper, “Publisher, be damned! from price gouging to the open road”, by four academics from the University of Leicester’s School of Management, criticises the large profits made by commercial publishers on the back of academics’ labours, and the failure of the Finch report on open access to address them.
The journal’s general editor, Stuart Macdonald, a visiting professor of economics at Aalto University in Finland, said the non-appearance of the journal in September was followed, two months later, by a letter from a senior manager at Taylor & Francis demanding that more than half of the proposition article be cut.
“They never said why. They just said they didn’t want this debate to take place,” Professor Macdonald said. “They also said I should have got their approval before inviting debate papers, but I have never done that before and it seems quite improper.”
He said matters came to a head at a “very unpleasant” meeting in January, when the journal’s editorial board threatened to resign en masse unless Taylor & Francis backed down.
The publisher eventually did so, but insisted on removing all publishers’ names from both the proposition article and the four responses. Professor Macdonald reluctantly agreed, but Taylor & Francis still did not publish the debate, prompting him to withhold subsequent editions of the journal for fear they would be published in preference. The result was a “huge backlog” of papers waiting to be published.
He was also upset that, when the edition was finally published, Taylor & Francis unilaterally added a long disclaimer to each article warning that “the accuracy of the content should not be relied upon”. —
link to article on figshare
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Secretary Duncan, casting the standards as a means of ensuring equity, went so far as to call the Common Core “the single greatest thing to happen to public education in America since Brown vs Board of Education.” But unlike Brown, whose roots grew out of community activism, it was gargantuan foundations, like the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation and the Walton Family Foundation (of the Walmart empire) that begot the Common Core. Gates alone provided$150 million in funding. The testing industry, led by Pearson, has giddilypromoted the standards, which would streamline a diffuse curriculum market and cost states as much as$8 billion to implement. “Everything that’s about the free-marketization of our schools—privatization, charter schools, choice—those mechanisms have been making the segregation worse,” Jones told the crowd. It all raises the question: who pulls the levers of power in education these days? As rally organizer David Greene asks, “Who is going to control public schools? Is it going to be teachers, parents and communities—or the same corporate entities?” — School Reformers Gain Momentum Fighting Corporate Influence | Alternet (via othemts)
We will never forget how Maya Angelou made us feel. RIP. http://powells.us/1rhszcr
Remembering Maya Angelou: Poet, author, and library advocate -
Each time I went to the library, I felt safe. No bad thing can happen to you in the library…. You can’t be talked down to, belittled, or humiliated in a library. When it looked like the sun wasn’t gonna shine any more, God put a rainbow in the clouds. A library is a rainbow in the cloud.
Alluding to abuse she suffered as a child during an October 29 address at the Schomburg Center for Research in Black Culture, DNAInfo (New York City), October 30, 2010.
"Creativity or talent, like electricity, is something I don’t understand but something I’m able to harness and use. While electricity remains a mystery, I know I can plug into it and light up a cathedral or a synagogue or an operating room and use it to help save a life. Or I can use it to electrocute someone. Like electricity, creativity makes no judgment. I can use it productively or destructively. The important thing is to use it. You can’t use up creativity. The more you use it, the more you have."
We’re saddened by the passing of our friend Maya Angelou. Thank you for all you’ve done, and for all the hugs.