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Vote for the Top 10 Open Access Fossil Vertebrates of 2016!

Wow! What a fantastically busy year, both for us here at PLOS Paleo (Jon, Andy, and I have been going on strong for a full year now!), as well as you, our fantastic Paleontology Community! You have spent this past year blogging, drawing, discovering, prepping, researching, writing, and publishing about fossil vertebrates. And we want to celebrate the hard work of many of those in our community by honoring the Top 10 Open Access Fossil Vertebrates of 2016!

The beauty of Open Access research is simple: anyone, regardless of institution, salary, etc., can access knowledge and research being published. So we’d like YOU, the wonderful members of the PLOS Paleo Community, to select the best fossil vertebrates that were published in Open Access journals.

We have a list of organisms and their associated studies on SurveyGizmo, and we’d like you to select up to 10 of the nominees that you’d like to see take home the honors!

The list of nominees is long! I’ve selected 38 papers that represent various fishes, amphibians, reptiles, dinosaurs, birds, and mammals that were published between last year’s SVP in Dallas and Sept. 1 of this year. There are no doubt papers I missed because there is a plethora of papers that have been published OA, and I didn’t want to overwhelm you! However, if you feel I missed a major player, don’t worry, you can write it in!

This is not just a popularity contest; we want to honor researchers that have thought long and worked hard to provide our community quality research that is openly available to all!

Having a hard time deciding? Criteria to consider when selecting organisms should include the thoroughness and quality of the description; the preservation or completeness of the specimen(s); the importance of the the organism to understanding the evolutionary relationships, evolutionary history, paleoecology, or functional morphology of their respective groups; or even the quality of the figures and associated paleo art (when applicable).

Please follow this link to SurveyGizmo to see the entire list of organism and their associated papers.

Each paper is linked to its source, so that you may download and read each article to help inform your decision! As you select your choices, you can select up to 10, at which point the remaining nominees become grayed out.


At the upcoming Society of Vertebrate Paleontology meeting in Salt Lake City, Utah, PLOS will be hosting a social on Thursday, October 27 from 6–8pm (details and location to be announced soon!), at which point we will announce the winners of the Top 10 Open Access Fossil Vertebrates of 2016. The authors of the winning papers will each receive this year’s PLOS Paleo t-shirt, featuring Xenokeryx amidalae, as well as the recognition of their peers at the meeting!

If you are attending SVP this year, you can also score this year’s PLOS t-shirt! Find us at the PLOS booth, where we are happy to discuss the benefits of publishing your research in an Open Access journal such as PLOS.

Hurry and vote! Survey closes on October 15, 2016!


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