Why kick Elsevier?

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This is my understanding of the issue. You are free to send me any correction.

Economic damage

  1. High cost of journal subscription. Journals of Elsevier are too costly. What is worse is that they have taken over other journals and currently have a huge monopoly.

  2. Bundling journals. Libraries have to subscribe to a bundle to get a few journals of interest. Often bundles contain journals that are not of any interest to a particular institution. Worse, they include journals which themselves are questionable: e.g. journals like Chaos, Soliton and fractals.

Unethical publishing practice

  1. Reviewing, which is important scientific responsibility of any journals, have been a sham in many cases. For example, Journals like Chaos, Soliton and fractals have published 302 papers from their Editor-in-chief El Naschie. (See http://rationalwiki.org/wiki/Mohamed_El_Naschie)

  2. Setting up journals on pseudo-sciences like for e.g. The Homeopathy (No link given so that they don’t get the benefit of page ranking) which give them unnecessary scientific credibility. Astrologers, What are you waiting for? Call Elsevier right now.

  3. There has been cases of Elsevier publishing many fake papers written by ghost writers in return to getting paid by drug companies. See for example

  4. Reed Elsevier’s role in arms trade (See http://www.idiolect.org.uk/elsevier/) While an action that is difficult to justify, I would not consider this hurting the scientific publishing directly (other than the minor danger of completely wiping out humanity and thus the scientific establishment, at least on earth). With pressure mounting, apparently they have given up on this illustrious business.

Summarising, the business practice of Elsevier has hurt scientific foundation not only economically but also led to lose of scientific credibility due to the questionable publishing standards they have followed.

What can we do ?

  1. Boycott them. See http://thecostofknowledge.com.

  2. If you are an editor of an Elsevier journal, resign now and encourage your fellow editors to resign en masse. See

  3. If you happen to be in the library committee of your institute try to get Elsevier out of the subscription list.

  4. Support and form journals like Theory of Computing

  5. Make all your work available on the net.

Remember all of this is not without ``risks’’. So evaluate the best options for you and make up your mind.