Writers were asked to submit their documents up to a database that is new PubMed Central within 6 months of book. The journals, perhaps maybe not the writers, would retain copyright. While the biggest compromise: Participation ended up being voluntary. The hope, Eisen claims, had been that the “good dudes” (the clinical communities) would perform some thing that is right as well as the “bad dudes” (the commercial writers) would look bad and finally cave in.
It absolutely was wishful reasoning. All of the communities refused to participate—even following the proprietary period had been extended to per year. “I still feel quite miffed,” says Varmus, whom now runs the nationwide Cancer Institute, “that these societies that are scientific which will be acting like guilds in order to make our enterprise more powerful, have now been terribly resistant to improvements when you look at the publishing industry.”
In September 2000, sick and tired of the recalcitrance for the writers, Eisen, Brown, and Varmus staged a boycott. In a letter that is open they pledged that they would not any longer publish in, contribute to, or peer-review for almost any journal that declined to indulge in PubMed Central. Almost 34,000 scientists from 180 countries signed on—but this, too, had been a breasts. “The writers knew that they had the researchers on the barrel,” Eisen says. “They called our bluff. This all occurred appropriate that I was being insane as I got hired at Berkeley, and I was very clearly advised by my colleagues. I’d never ever get tenure if i did son’t toe an even more traditional publishing line.”