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PLoS ONE blog chatter

As Liz mentioned in her first post here we have been utterly bowled over by the amount of Blog interest in our new project even before we officially announced it. That has been brilliant as we are taking much of our inspiration from the community activities of the web. We really want to put the community of scientists in as much control of PLoS ONE as we possibly can. Anyway, I thought that it would be good to give a quick run down of what has been said.

So I guess things kicked off not with a blog but with an Article in Wired, Free Radical, about one of our founders Harold Varmus. In that interview he let slip a very slight mention of PLoS ONE:

And this summer, Varmus and his colleagues will launch PLoS ONE, a paperless journal that will publish online any paper that evaluators deem “scientifically legitimate.” Each article will generate a thread for comment and review. Great papers will be recognized by the discussion they generate, and bad ones will fade away.

That was picked up on by a couple of bloggers. Ask Doctor Vector and peanutbutter liked the sound of it with some reservations. Peanutbutter gets the prize for the first use of a Star Trek reference when talking about PLoS ONE: Journals but not as we know it.

But it was Pedro over at Public Rambling and who dug a bit deeper and turned up a draft version of the PLoS ONE site.

Konrad at konrads considerations noticed as did Peter Suber on Open Access News; Deepak at business|bytes|genes|molecules; and Olivier at, who showed how good French is for slogans “Science 2.0: c’est parti.” Is just crying out to be on a T-shirt.

Glyn in OPEN… decided to give us some pretty ambitious aims:

The Public Library of Science has already played a crucial role in helping to bolster enormously the academic credentials of open access; with PLoS ONE it looks as if it is going to re-make scientific discourse entirely.

No pressure then!

By now we had announced PLoS ONE officially and The Chronicle of Higher Education raised the suggestion that Nature’s debate on peer review, which is currently on their website, was in some way a pre-emptive reaction to PLoS ONE’s announcement. That seems pretty unlikely to me as I am sure that Nature’s debate will have been in the pipeline for months at least. All the same I’m flattered and must get over there and get some comments posted.

By this point the bloggers (of which I guess I am now one) could make some more informed comments. The great thing was that most of them got the PLoS ONE concept pretty much spot on and liked it; Biotechnology Information Center News and Issues In Scholarly Communication even rechristened us; although PLoS ONE suggests that there is a PLoS Closed somewhere which just ain’t so.

We are being giving some pretty big expectations to live up to. Jamais at Open the Future has us aiming at nothing short of a revolution in science communication, while The Crafty Librarian thinks we are setting up a Scientific Wiki. We aren’t, or at least that isn’t what we are doing with PLoS ONE at launch. How we could use Wiki technology and philosophy in science is something I’d like to explore but there is enough to do with the PLoS ONE launch already.

There are plenty more blog entries mentioning PLoS ONE, check out Technorati if you want a more comprehensive list, basically though it has been really great to see how easily the idea of PLoS ONE has been understood and how much it seems to be liked. I guess that I now need to brace for the backlash. Most of what has so far been written about PLoS ONE has been exactly on the money so there is going to be a lot for us to talk about and this blog is where I hope to say most of it.

Right now I’ll close this entry by quoting Pierre at Things of Sorts who is clearly itching to write our next press release.

What happens when Web 2.0 meets scientific publishing? The answer is called PLoS ONE.

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