I guess the real question is: Should I submit a paper for peer review? I’m 100% going to write up the findings of these experiments and I’ll write it in the open, but should I submit the paper to an open access publication like PLoS for peer review?
Personally I could go either way. I know that it is useful for my career because current measures heavily favor peer review publications. And I know that it would benefit Koch in his career, but he has given me the freedom to choose what we do with these studies.
And honestly I don’t care about how the current system rewards peer reviewed publications. If this was the year 2030 I could probably just leave a copy of the paper here in my notebook and submit it to Google Scholar search results (which I should make a short post about). At that time (hopefully) the scientific community won’t be afraid to openly critique a publication, but now there is some kind of invisible barrier that prevents this kind of interaction.
If I did this now it wouldn’t be peer reviewed by anonymous reviewers, but I could say send it out to various colleagues and have them review and comment and self publish the comments.
I actually would like to do it this way. I think it would be a worthwhile experiment in open science publication. I’m not afraid of the criticism that I may receive from peers. I’m also not afraid of the impact it could have on my career, if indeed this is not well received. Eventually someone is going to have to make a bold leap, why can’t it be now, and why shouldn’t I make that leap?
On the other side of the coin, I’m not afraid of the current model either. I’m not opposed to publishing in an open access journal like PLoSOne, but I don’t see the value in a closed access journal. With an open access journal I would receive the benefits of open access and the benefits of peer review, the best of both worlds, so why shouldn’t I publish this way? I would get the career benefit that everyone expects to see on your resume and the joy of having shared my knowledge openly with all the world.
So then why do I feel inclined to go against the grain? Why do I feel like it would be a worthwhile risk to publish in an unorthodox way?
Am I crazy?