Peer-Review and Quality Control - Open Access Archivangelism
"Many physicists say — and some may even believe — that peer review does not add much to their work, that they would do fine with just unrefereed preprints, and that they only continue to submit to peer-reviewed journals because they need to satisfy their promotion/evaluation committees. And some of them may even be right. Certainly the giants in the field don’t benefit from peer review. They have no peers, and for them peer-review just leads to regression on the mean. But that criterion does not scale to the whole field, nor to other fields, and peer review continues to be needed to maintain quality standards. That’s just the nature of human endeavor. And the quality vetting and tagging is needed before you risk investing the time into reading, using and trying to build on work -- not after. (That's why it's getting so hard to find referees, why they're taking so long (and often not doing a conscientious enough job, especially for journals whose quality standards are at or below the mean.) Open Access means freeing peer-reviewed research from access tolls, not freeing it from peer review..."
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