Economics, Silicon Valley, and Information Warfare — Is Accuracy Becoming a Luxury Item? Or a Casualty?

Information warfare is both tactical and strategic, with much of its success stemming from the weakened economics of the current information economy. Scholarly publishers have experienced this in many ways, from Google Scholar to predatory publishers to pre-print archives — all answers to the calls for “free information” and all revealing tactical and strategic vulnerabilities as accuracy and facts become luxury items in the information war.

How’s That "Abundance" Thing Working Out For You?

The age of information abundance may have fundamental flaws — barriers to entry that create false equivalence; dissemination tools that conflate fake information with responsible sources; self-reinforcing loops of conspiracy and paranoia; and social fragmentation that makes societal disruption more likely. What can be done? Here are a few ideas.

What We Can Learn from Fake News

Fake News is making headlines as questions about how dubious stories may have influenced the US election. This post explores the damage done to reputable news organizations and what scholarly publishers could learn from the whole thing.

What the Heck is Amazon up to Now?

Although Amazon is a central player in many areas of publishing and media, it is hard to predict where it will head next. This makes it hard to plan to compete with it. On the other hand, Amazon has some typical ways that it behaves when it enters a market and strategic planners can learn from them.

The Network Model of Publishing

One of the unanticipated consequences of the introduction of digital media to scholarly publishing is that publishing properties increasingly are organized into networks, with one property pointing to another for the benefit of all. This essay describes the network publishing model and comments on some of a network’s characteristics and economic opportunities.

Parallel Worlds? To What Extent are General Internet Trends Applicable to Scholarly Publishing?

A number of recent articles have posited the idea that information distribution on the Internet is undergoing a massive change – driven by the failure of site advertising and subscriptions as a general purpose economic model, and the rise of mobile powered social media as the discovery tool of these times. To what extent is this way of thinking applicable to scholarly publishing?

A Single User Account

Academics’ expectations for user experience are set not by reference to improvements relative to the past but increasingly in comparison with their experiences on consumer internet services and mobile devices. The best solution for research, teaching, and learning would be a single account for each user, controlled by that individual, and accepted portably across services and platforms.