Peter Suber zitiert Sandra Porter, Finding scientific papers for free, part I-III (im Blog: Discovering Biology in a Digital World). Sandra plant eine „three part series on finding free scientific papers“. Der erste Teil A day in the life of an English physician war schon sehr erhellend …
In April, I had the great fortune to attend (and speak at) a conference on scientific publishing sponsored by the Association of Learned and Professional Society Publishers. One of the first speakers was an English physician who described his trials and a typical ordeal in trying to use the medical literature….
This doctor, a thoughtful and well meaning young man, had reviewed the X-ray results for one of his patients. She listened quietly and asked if him if her results could mean lung cancer. He went to the internet to find out.
First, he tried PubMed.
But many of the papers were in journals that he couldn’t access because his hospital didn’t have subscriptions.
Next, he tried Google.
But his Google results all seemed to be same, and they failed to provide his answer.
Last, he tried Google scholar and finally found a place to begin. Luckily, he happened on a paper, written by someone that he knew worked in the field….
The talk was over and it was time for questions. One of audience member, an older gentlemen with a crisp English accent, angrily questioned the young man, in disbelief. How could it be that he, a doctor, couldn’t access this information? Surely, he must have access through his University?
Calmly and carefully, the young physician explained that he worked in a hospital, run by the National Health Service. Yes, he said, he could access publications if he were at the University….
Furthermore, he explained that the computer he uses is situated in a central work station, shared with the nurses, and other doctors; and used for multiple tasks. With others waiting to access to patient records, check medication details, and review lab results, it’s impossible for him to monopolize the computer for more than a few minutes at a time….
I sat in the audience, simply amazed. Not that he couldn’t access information for free, mind you, but that he didn’t know how to find freely accessible information in PubMed….