Tuesday, June 24, 2008

QOTD: Les Carr on academic publishing

From Repository Man, Les Carr: Publishing - A One-Word Oxymoron?

Why do they call it "publishing"? Wouldn't it be much more accurate to say "I've just had a paper privatised?"

4 comments:

Bud said...

And, that's not the half of it. What was the process that led to the paper's privatization? Exactly how was that paper selected? Typically, it verified some common wisdom.

Truth be told, academic publishing is a bit of a racket and an often enough haven for the incompetent. Digg, for all its faults, would do a better job.

czar said...

Academic publishing, racket or not, puts the food on the table in my house. If you want to know more:

boblandedits.blogspot.com

Peg said...

It doesn't seem as if Carr's original statement refers exclusively to academic publishing, but rather to the oxymoronic nature of the privitizing/gatekeeping nature of publishing in general.

I couldn't agree more with Bud. In fact, I think the racket extends beyond publishing to the whole enterprise of academic credentialing (and much of the academic research that flows from the duly credentialed)--the often- unearned privileges it confers, the voices/perspectives/forms of expertise it excludes.

Don't worry, czar! I see a bright future for folks with your skills under any paradigm of sharing the written word.

Kevin Gamble said...

I might have jumped to conclusions when he used the word "paper". Plus he runs a research repository. But I do agree with you Peg that it certainly could apply to other aspects of "publishing".

The other part of the racket is that the work that is being privatized is almost exclusively created at taxpayer expense. You couldn't make it up...

Agree Czar's skills are not threatened.