Archive for January 29, 2012

Take a stand against Elsevier

Posted in Open Access with tags , , , on January 29, 2012 by telescoper

My views about the academic journal racket are on record. Of all the profiteering outfits out there, the commercial publisher Elsevier  is one of the worst offenders, for the following reasons:

  1. They charge exorbitantly high prices for their journals.
  2. They sell journals in very large “bundles,” so libraries must buy a large set with many unwanted journals, or none at all. Elsevier thus makes huge profits by exploiting their essential titles, at the expense of other journals.
  3. They support measures such as SOPA, PIPA and the Research Works Act, that aim to restrict the free exchange of information.

I believe the business practices of Elsevier are detrimental to the open exchange of information on which scientific progress depends, so I have added my name to the list here of academics who refuse to publish in, referee for, or do editorial work on behalf of any Elsevier journal. If you wish to add your name to the list you can do so here.

A list of journals published by Elsevier can be found here.

I Don’t Like Chocolate

Posted in Uncategorized on January 29, 2012 by telescoper

I was beginning to think I’m the only person in the Universe who doesn’t like chocolate, so I’m grateful to this blogger for showing me I’m not alone!

Yesterday Cadbury were “promoting” their revolting “Creme Eggs” on Twitter. These are particularly vile: sickly sugar-soaked globules of a mixture of pus and mucus, encased in solidified baby poo. Eat one and puke.

I don’t like them, you see.

There's a Story Inside

I often wonder what chocolate tastes like to other people, because so many are so over the moon about it. My boss has a bowl of chocolate on his desk for public consumption, and people are constantly stopping by. Even if we’re in the office having a meeting, they’ll open the door and duck and grab, with a “Sorry, just needed chocolate.” It’s worse in the afternoon, and particularly on Wednesdays. It usually derails my train of thought, because I have to wonder why these people who would otherwise never be rude, in this case intrude just because they need chocolate. I look at the bowl and feel nothing.


It’s a burden sometimes, to be an anomaly. What, not like chocolate? If I had a dime for every time someone asked me why not, I could quit my job and never look at that chocolate bowl again. I have grown to…

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