What Open Access Might Be Competing With

There has been some concern articulated about the bias that could arise from author-fee-driven publications (which is one flavor of open access). Here is an example of bias within the closed access framework that can arise almost completely undetected (thanks to The Scientist for the pointer) and enabled by an industry:industry collaboration

The Australasian Journal of Bone and Joint Medicine, which was published by Exerpta Medica, a division of scientific publishing juggernaut Elsevier, is not indexed in the MEDLINE database, and has no website (not even a defunct one). The Scientist obtained two issues of the journal: Volume 2, Issues 1 and 2, both dated 2003. The issues contained little in the way of advertisements apart from ads for Fosamax, a Merck drug for osteoporosis, and Vioxx. (Click here and here to view PDFs of the two issues.)

Hat tip Josh Parker

Addendum 5/8/2009 here.

5/10/2009 More from The Scientist.

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