Embargo Watch

Keeping an eye on how scientific information embargoes affect news coverage

Patience is a virtue: Gastroenterology association changes embargo policy five years after criticism

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gastroMore than five years ago, I took the American Gastroenterological Association (AGA) to task for what I considered an ill-advised embargo policy in which scores of “article in press” papers in their journals were freely available online, but considered “embargoed.” And while change often comes slowly, it does in fact come.

Last month, the AGA changed their policy. In an update dated September 16, the association writes:  Read the rest of this entry »

Written by Ivan Oransky

October 23, 2015 at 12:00 pm

King’s College London takes responsibility for date snafu that led to apparent embargo break

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kclOn Monday morning, Newsweek’s Elijah Wolfson asked me a question on Twitter:

Wolfson was asking about this BBC story. So I checked things out, and learned that the apparent break wasn’t the BBC’s fault. The King’s College press office tells Embargo Watch: Read the rest of this entry »

Written by Ivan Oransky

October 23, 2015 at 9:00 am

Posted in Uncategorized

Richard Branson…conscientious embargo breaker?

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Richard Branson, via Wikimedia

Richard Branson, via Wikimedia

There’s a puzzling embargo-related story playing out about someone whose name I didn’t really ever expect to see grace the pages of Embargo Watch: Billionaire Sir Richard Branson, founder of the Virgin Group.

Here’s what seems to have happened: This morning, Branson published a blog post at Virgin.com that began: Read the rest of this entry »

Written by Ivan Oransky

October 19, 2015 at 9:30 am

Posted in Uncategorized

“Incorrect advice” from Nature leads to arXiv embargo oddity

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cover_natureLast Wednesday, New Scientist’s Jacob Aron noticed something odd about a paper on arXiv:

The abstract page for the paper, “Relativistic boost as the cause of periodicity in a massive black-hole binary candidate,” included this note: Read the rest of this entry »

Written by Ivan Oransky

September 21, 2015 at 9:00 am

Posted in Uncategorized

PNAS lifts embargo early on results slated for coverage by Science News

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pnas juneThe Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences (PNAS) lifted the embargo early today on a paper scheduled for release Monday, after learning that some of the results would be part of a feature being published today.

PNAS tells Embargo Watch why they lifted the embargo early on “Evidence for superconductivity in Li-decorated graphene:” Read the rest of this entry »

Written by Ivan Oransky

September 4, 2015 at 4:17 pm

Posted in Uncategorized

The $30 million press releases: Breaking embargoes for fun, profit, and criminal charges

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secIf, like I do, you subscribe to daily emails from the press release service EurekAlert!, you may have noticed this boilerplate at the top of those emails:

Please note further that anyone using embargoed information for trading purposes may be in violation of the Securities Exchange Act.

If you’ve ever wondered what that was about, an Associated Press (AP) story explains in mind-blowing detail today.

Here’s the lead of the story from the AP, about what Federal authorities called “the biggest scheme of its kind ever prosecuted, and one that demonstrated yet another way in which the financial world is vulnerable to cybercrime:” Read the rest of this entry »

Written by Ivan Oransky

August 11, 2015 at 3:25 pm

Posted in Uncategorized

Nature runs with another short embargo. This time, Science played along, too.

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cover_natureA bit more than a month ago, I wrote about a 29-hour embargo for a Nature paper on the Kennewick Man that made a number of reporters pretty angry. Today, the embargo lifted on another Nature paper — also involving the origins of peoples in North America — just 29 hours after the paper was sent to reporters.

What made this case a bit different was that the embargo ended up lifting on a Science paper (the DOI seems to not yet resolve is now working) on a similar subject at the same time. I’ll let Science explain how that happened: Read the rest of this entry »

Written by Ivan Oransky

July 21, 2015 at 4:19 pm

Posted in Uncategorized

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