|Weekly News Digest
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Scholarly Publishers Launch PRISM Coalition
The Partnership for Research Integrity in Science and Medicine (PRISM) is a coalition launched with developmental support from the Professional/Scholarly Publishing Division (www.pspcentral.org) of the Association of American Publishers (AAP; www.publishers.org) to alert Congress to the unintended consequences of government interference in scientific and scholarly publishing. The group has launched a Web site at www.prismcoalition.org, where it articulates the PRISM Principles, an affirmation of publishers’ contributions to science, research, and peer review, and an expression of support for continued private sector efforts to expand access to scientific information.
The coalition was formed in response to legislative efforts to mandate that peer-reviewed articles resulting from government-funded research be made available at no cost. (In July, the U.S. House of Representatives approved a measure directing the National Institutes of Health—NIH; www.nih.gov—to provide free public online access to agency-funded research findings within 12 months of their publication in a peer-reviewed journal. The Senate is considering a similar measure. See http://newsbreaks.infotoday.com/wndReader.asp?ArticleId=37022.)
Featured on the PRISM site are backgrounders on peer review, dissemination and access, preservation of the scholarly record, and new approaches publishers are taking. There is also discussion about the risks of government intervention to the sustainability of peer review, copyright infringement, the possibility of selective bias in the record of science, federal budget uncertainties, and inefficient allocation of government funding that duplicates private sector investments. The site provides information to assist the public in making their concerns known to Congress. Anyone who wishes to sign on to the PRISM Principles may do so on the site.
Source: Association of American Publishers[ Editor’s Note: For an interesting and thoughtful response to PRISM, see Peter Suber’s Open Access News at www.earlham.edu/~peters/fos/2007_08_19_fosblogarchive.html#365179758119288416.]
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