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The Academia_edu Files

Page history last edited by Janneke 4 years, 6 months ago











Really, We're Helping To Build This . . . Business: The Academia.edu Files, charts the debate over for-profit academic social networking sites (aka academic research sharing platforms) such as Academia.edu, ResearchGate and Mendeley. It features contributions from Gary Hall, Kathleen Fitzpatrick, Eileen Joy and Guy Geltner. Although it has initially been put together by Janneke Adema and Gary Hall, like all those titles in the Liquid Books series, The Academia.edu Files is open for anyone to add to, edit, reversion and comment upon.


Image Credit: CC-BY: Linda N. from Flickr: https://www.flickr.com/photos/22748341@N00/361025310/


Part 1    Background to the Debate




This section provides some background to the development of various academic social networking sites (SNS), as well as highlighting some of the ongoing discussions regarding certain aspects of their continuing development. It provides information about: the business models and capital behind for-profit academic SNS; discussions relating to the new reputation metrics and systems introduced during their development; and plans to implement new commentary and review functions.


Part 2    The Critique


Gary Hall, ‘What Does Academia.edu’s Success Mean for Open Access?' LSE Impact Blog, October 22, 2015


Kathleen Fitzpatrick, ‘Academia. Not Edu’, www.plannedobsolescence.net, October 26, 2015


Martin Eve, 'Academia.edu’s Peer-Review Experiments', www.martineve.com, October 26, 2015 


Alex Rushforth, 'The Facebook-ization of Academic Reputation?', The Citation Culture blog, October 28, 2015


Guy Geltner. 'Upon Leaving Academia.edu', Mittelalter. Interdisziplinäre Forschung und Rezeptionsgeschichte, December 7, 2015 


Guy Geltner: On Leaving Academia.edu

Katie Fortney and Justin Gonder, ‘A Social Networking Site is Not An Open Access Repository’, Office of Scholarly Communication, University of California, December 2015


Eileen Joy, ‘Open Letter to Rosemary Feal, Kathleen Fitzpatrick, and the Modern Language Association’, Punctum Books Blog, December 15, 2015


Janneke Adema, 'Don’t Give Your Labour To Academia.edu. Use It To Strengthen The Academic Commons', Open Reflections, April 7, 2016


Part 3    Why Are We Not Boycotting Academia.edu?: The Symposium


Why Are We Not Boycotting Academia.edu?


The Centre for Disruptive Media at Coventry University organised a symposium on December 9, 2015, about academic social networking platforms titled ‘Why Are We Not Boycotting Academia.edu?'


Janneke Adema (Coventry University, UK)

Slides / Presentation


Pascal Aventurier (INRA, France)

Slides / Presentation


Kathleen Fitzpatrick (MLA/Coventry University, US)



Gary Hall (Coventry University, UK)



David Parry (Saint Joseph University, US)



Part 4    Alternative Platforms


Alternative Platforms


This section lists alternative not-for profit Academic Social Networking Sites, as well as open-source tools and software applications to set-up your own academic SNS, network or functions.

Part 5    Social Integration For The Distributed Commons  


Social Integration For The Distributed Commons


Is it possible to theorise a more economically progressive social network that does not rely on VC-funded, Silicon Valley-style platform capitalism? Might a distributed network that both participates in and nurtures the scholarly commons be a more viable option – one that supports the needs of the scholarly community instead of monetizing their communication to serve the interests of investors? Can we support a social layer that interacts with and contributes to the scholarly commons, rather than a proprietary social network with mere lip-service to openness for its business benefits? 


What are the possibilities of commonly-owned, open-source, and economically & socially progressive social media, which seeks to nurture/interact with scholarly research as a commons – but, crucially, is useful to and has the potential to be well-utilised by researchers. Could we build a social layer on top of the already existing and distributed commons, which stretches from library repositories to scholars’ personal websites, and from open access publishers and pirate libraries to institutional profile pages and beyond? How can we harvest the discussions already taking place in localised and often obscured contexts (from mailing lists to comment sections on blogs) and make them more visible and more clearly connected to research outputs (whatever and wherever these might be)?







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