Today is the day that we stop saying what we will do to change scientific publishing and start saying what we are doing to change scientific publishing. We have built what we think is the most transparent and accessible way to publish scientific work; the entire process, from submission to final archival, is performed in the open for all of the scientific community as well as the public to see and evaluate. We have made publishing cheaper than any other journal and we have made it faster than any other journal. Yet, with all these improvements we will have done nothing and can do nothing without you.
It is now your turn to make a choice. Will you choose to publish in journals based on impact factor? Will you choose to publish in journals based on the editorial board? Or will you choose to publish in the most transparent way possible? This seemingly easy choice is, of course, complicated by many things in our lives and science, from funding to promotion and we know it will not be easy for some. However, this is a choice that we will have to make to improve scientific publishing, if not all at once then paper-by-paper. To borrow a phrase from Alexander Solzhenitsyn,
“If we did not paste together the dead bones and scales of ideology, if we did not sew together the rotting rags, we would be astonished how quickly the lies would be rendered helpless and subside.”
Solzhenitsyn was not talking about scientific publishing but he was talking about standing up to make a change for what we believe in. So if you believe scientific publishing is broken, do something to fix it: make a choice to publish your work in The Winnower