Update: The original post here was written at midnight, with a cat on my lap. I thought this post conveyed some tongue in cheek aspect of this idea to ignore work in Elsevier journals. (one could view it as a midnight middle finger to Elsevier over some of their policies). But clearly, based on the responses I am seeing that did not come across. I accept the error of my ways. Drug Monkey is right – no work should be ignored – no matter where it is published. I could explain in more detail what I was trying to convey – but in the end that is like explaining a bad joke. Instead, I am therefore retracting my blog post. That is one for Ivan Oransky I guess. Now back to your regularly scheduled programs.
There has been much written in the last few days about multiple calls to boycott journals published by Elsevier due to Elsevier’s generally problematic publishing policies and support of SOPA/ RWA, etc. People have called for people to not only boycott publishing in Elsevier journals but to also stop reviewing for them, editing for them, and also to try to get libraries to stop subscribing to them. Some good reading in this area includes:
I think these are good steps. But I also think they are not enough. I am therefore calling for people to go one step further – to stop helping promote articles published in Elsevier journals. Don’t blog about papers in Elsevier journals. Don’t tweet about them. Don’t use Elsevier papers for journal clubs. In essence, ignore them – consider them dead – make them invisible. Not completely of course. Any work should be considered a contribution to science or math or whatever your field is. But there are LOTS and LOTS of things to do with your time. And if you like to share – to communicate – to discuss – it is easy to find non Elsevier articles articles for those purposes (even better – pick open access articles ..)
This may be a minor thing in the fight for more openness in publishing, but it should help. After all, for many scientists, the worst thing that can happen is to be ignored.