Embargo Watch

Keeping an eye on how scientific information embargoes affect news coverage

Archive for April 2011

Faculty of 1000 strikes a blow against the Ingelfinger Rule

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I’ve been growing more and more concerned about the effects of the Ingelfinger Rule, the policy by which journals refuse to publish anything that’s appeared in the mainstream press or in other journals. (Of course, some journals don’t seem to notice when they’re publishing authors who self-plagiarize, which would seem to be an Ingelfinger violation, but that’s a subject for our sister blog, Retraction Watch.)

Journals vary in how strictly they apply the rule, but it’s become clear to me that Ingelfinger, much more than embargoes themselves, is what gives journals the stranglehold they have over control of scientific information. Even if reporters didn’t agree to any embargoes, they’d find that a lot of researchers wouldn’t talk to them about their work, because it would jeopardize the coin of the realm: Publishing in journals. That stranglehold maintains journals’ place atop the hierarchy — and their profits.

So I was very interested — to put it mildly — to hear that one scientific publisher was striking back. Read the rest of this entry »

Written by Ivan Oransky

April 1, 2011 at 9:30 am

Posted in Uncategorized