Skip to content

Social media is changing the shape of scientific debate

Social media is changing the shape of scientific debate: “The drawback of the journal process is that it doesn’t allow a space for public and open debate and discussion of ideas in a convenient and quick way. This isn’t necessarily their fault, that’s not what they are designed for. But there is a space in the scientific community for this kind of reviewing, commenting and evaluation of ideas, allowing groups of scientists to work together to refine and improve ideas.”
I’m in agreement with the notion of needing an open space for the exchange and development of ideas. Last year, I posted an article – Scholarship in an Age of Participation – trying to make exactly this point. Change is multi-faceted. It is rarely complete in overwriting the existing system. As such, especially when we consider scholarship, we are adding to, not replacing, the intent of the traditional journal process. We still need the peer-review process of experts evaluating the work of others. But it’s not a complete picture. Chaotic spaces of innovative thought are critical too.