Thoughts on Calling Out Brill Publishers Today

I added a pretty strongly worded portion to my Open Science-Humanities Book calling out Brill Publishers.

I’d like to provide some background and texture to these vocal Open Access advocacy efforts in support of merging Science and the Humanities and unlatching the research on which my book depends.

I’m using my book and its evident public interest (500 downloads and 1000 hits in a couple days)–as well as my pioneering of a Fahrenheit 451 model of how a humanities author can become a living, iterative digital book–as a platform to shake up academic publishing, which is what my ScholComm job is all about, advocating for Open Access.

I don’t want to just bring Open Science into the heart of Religious Studies. I want to help make the whole world smarter by freeing up important research by REALLY, REALLY SMART people. I want publishing to be the Humanistic force for good that it was first created and born to be!

I’m all for great publishing and working with top quality publishers. I’m all for helping publishers shift to a web-traffic based revenue model.

But I’m done pretending like books shouldn’t be available for free for the world to read, or to pretend that all publishers produce equally valid or important research. There’s way too much crappy, derivative stuff out there in Religious Studies, and it’s time for us to stop supporting a model that just reinforces and re-entrenches discourses of Fundamentalist ignorance, classism, racism, and bigotry.

Feel free to pass this along to the muckity-mucks at the publishing BIGS. Just want their execs to know where I’m coming from. I’m pro-reasonable profits, but I’m more pro-Science and pro-Humanism.

Until the economics of publishing is on the right side of the Humanist struggle, I’m going to make a big f**g public rhetorical stink about it. Ask people who know me. That’s how I roll.