Open Access News

News from the open access movement

Sunday, January 28, 2007

Open access, toll access, and intelligent design

Proponents of "intelligent design" blame biased peer review, rather than bad science, for their poor showing in peer-reviewed journals.  For some reason, they think OA might help them.  From a blog post by William Dembski at Uncommon Descent (January 26, 2007):

The big publishers of scientific journals are, not surprisingly, concerned about how open access to information on the internet is cutting into their profits. Apparently they are now hiring PR people to try to keep their market share, and the PR people are counseling that the very concept of open access needs to be undermined. With regard to our issues [intelligent design], who do you think stands to benefit more from such an anti-open-access campaign, the Darwinists whose propaganda engines are entrenched in the big publishing houses, or the ID proponents who are systematically excluded?

(Thanks to Afarensis.)


  1. OA welcomes support from every quarter, but I have to tell Dembski that the goal of the OA movement is to remove access barriers, not to remove quality control.  The goal is OA to peer-reviewed literature, not bypassing peer review.  If articles on ID are routinely rejected by peer-reviewed journals, the reason is not the business interests of conventional publishers but the scientific judgments of editors and referees.  That shouldn't change at all under OA.
  2. In fact, there are good reasons to think that OA will undermine support for intelligent design by spreading knowledge of science beyond the narrow sphere reached by high-priced subscription journals.