Issue 10


ASAPbio have launched ReimagineReview, a register of experiments around innovations in peer review.


Springer Nature and ResearchGate have started a trial where subscription content of Nature journals is pushed to ResearchGate. Whereas this was seen as positive for ResearchGate, which is threatened by legal action from other subscription publishers for users posting their copyrighted material, there has been speculation as to Springer Nature’s motivations for this move.
It might be seen as confirmation of ongoing speculations that the publishers may be interested in a takeover of the portal. Or it could be motivated by the desire to expand the syndication of subscription content. At this point this remains a trial whose impact remains to be seen. Although the publisher has already implemented a content distribution scheme with ReadCube, the broad availability of content across different channels ultimately may encourage libraries to cancel journal subscriptions in favor of open access publishing. Of course, the present scheme is not an affirmative step towards open access, as distribution and reuse rights of the content remain restricted.

Michael Eisen has been announced as the next Editor-in-Chief of eLife. Congratulations! He aims to re-invent the assessment of research and peer review process of the selective open access journal.

Norwegian universities failed to reach an agreement with Elsevier on continuing their journal subscriptions, so have terminated the agreement as the latest set-back for the publisher.

Elsevier continues to launch mirror journals of their subscription titles, having almost the same title, same editorial board and presumably similar editorial criteria. An announcement for Optical Materials is here. In practice, content distribution and average citation rates for articles across the mirror journals may still differ even for journals having the same common lower editorial bar, and it remains to be seen how the community will react to these in the long-term.

Sweden’s Riksbankens Jubileumsfond is no longer taking part in Plan S as it stands, but remains member of cOAlition S. In their statement they comment that “Plan S needs to be made more flexible and discussed more openly with the research community in order to gain support.”


Twelve years after the first occurrence, a second patient has seen a long-term remission of HIV following a bone marrow transplantation. Published in Nature [institutional repository].

According to the latest WHO report the fight against the latest outbreak of Ebola has made some progress, even though hotspots remain.

Joerg Heber