Traditional Scholarly Publishing on Bloggers

This editorial in Analytical Chemistry is a nice example of the reaction more formal publications have to the rise of “Bloggers” (found via Abhishek Tiwari’s blog which has a delicious subtitle of “In the spider-web of facts, many a truth is strangled”.

This is classic case of an established industry being threatened by The Internet. We’ve see it with Travel Agents, Book Stores, Insurance Brokers, Newspapers… you name it. The Editorial just effuses indignation that some people have the temerity to bypass the establishment.

Scientific Blogging is here to stay, as is blogging in general (sorry, newspapers). My advice to anyone who feels threatened by that is:

  1. Understand the rules have changed. What was scarce is now plentiful. What’s the new scarcity?
  2. The new paradigm has some advantages and some weaknesses – what are they?
  3. With the resources and expertise you have built up, how can you bring value to this new world (and hence remain relevant)?

What won’t work is sitting on the sidelines hoping the new thing will go away, because it won’t. It’ll just keep on getting more relevant and by the time you are forced to engage with it, they’ll have solved most of the problems without you… and you will be irrelevant.