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Approaching Critical Mass?

Looks like people are already warming up for tomorrow's Open Access Day. In the Guardian, Richard Smith pens a column on Springer's acquisition of BioMed Central, which he says may turn out to be a pivotal moment in the history of scientific publishing. "I'm no seer, but it became obvious to me in the mid-90s, when ... I was the chief executive of the BMJ Publishing Group, that the transition to open access would have to happen," he writes. "Once all of science is open access – as it surely will be eventually – then the value of our scientific deposits may be greatly increased." He says that traditional publishers "subtract value by Balkanising the research."

In other open access events, Peter Suber reports that "Google and a group of publishers may be close to settling the publishers' lawsuit against the Google Library Project," the company's initiative of scanning books on library shelves and making them accessible online.

 

The Scan

Billions for Antivirals

The US is putting $3.2 billion toward a program to develop antivirals to treat COVID-19 in its early stages, the Wall Street Journal reports.

NFT of the Web

Tim Berners-Lee, who developed the World Wide Web, is auctioning its original source code as a non-fungible token, Reuters reports.

23andMe on the Nasdaq

23andMe's shares rose more than 20 percent following its merger with a special purpose acquisition company, as GenomeWeb has reported.

Science Papers Present GWAS of Brain Structure, System for Controlled Gene Transfer

In Science this week: genome-wide association study ties variants to white matter stricture in the brain, and more.