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Beyond online preprints: formalization of open initiatives in ChinaA growing number of online journals and academic platforms are adopting light peer review or 'publish then filter' models of scholarly communication. These approaches have the advantage of enabling instant exchanges of knowledge between academics and are part of a wider search for alternatives to traditional peer review and certification processes in scholarly publishing. However, establishing credibility and identifying the correct balance between communication and scholarly rigour remains an important challenge for digital communication platforms targeting academic communities. This paper looks at a highly influential, government-backed, open publishing platform in China: Science Paper Online, which is using transparent post-publication peer-review processes to encourage innovation and address systemic problems in China's traditional academic publishing system. There can be little doubt that the Chinese academic publishing landscape differs in important ways from counterparts in the United States and Western Europe. However, this article suggests that developments in China also provide important lessons about the potential of digital technology and government policy to facilitate a large-scale shift towards more open and networked models of scholarly communication.
The Courts and the Media: Challenges in the Era of Digital and Social MediaThe jury system is under threat, as jurors turn to Google and defy instructions to stick to the evidence. The news media struggle with inconsistent suppression orders. Judges wonder how to insulate justice from Twitter and Facebook. The eminent contributors to this book are Chief Justices, journalists, News Ltd’s former CEO, legal scholars and court officials. They see the anxieties from different viewpoints - and the opportunities as well - but none are under illusions about how serious (and complex) the issues are becoming.
Help at hand to navigate legal minefieldsReview(s) of: The journalist's guide to media law, 4th edition, by Mark Pearson and Mark Polden, Sydney: Allen and Unwin, 2011, 480 pp. ISBN 9781742370385; Blogging and tweeting without getting sued: A global guide to the law for anyone writing online, by Mark Pearson, Sydney: Allen and Unwin, 2012, 222 pp. ISBN 9781742378770.
Digital CopyrightI finished the original manuscript of Digital Copyright in 2000, two years after Congress enacted the Digital Millennium Copyright Act. The 1976 Copyright Act was itself 24 years old, and beginning to show its age. The Internet, in contrast, was still new and shiny and scary, especially for legacy entertainment and information businesses and the copyright lawyers who represented them. Seventeen years later, the Internet has become an essential feature of all of our lives and the copyright laws designed to tame it seem elderly and barnacle-encrusted. Remarkably, the legislative process that has made sensible copyright law reform all but impossible has stayed largely unchanged. Congress and the Copyright Office have recently launched what is billed as a comprehensive reexamination of copyright law with the goal of overhauling the law for the 21st century. It seems likely that these efforts will hew to the patterns of earlier copyright revision. Perhaps we stick with the tried and true approach to making copyright laws, even though it results in bad laws, because the process works so well for so many of the participants. Members of Congress can rely on affected industries to come up with broadly acceptable compromises, and to take on much of the burden of pressuring other interested groups to swallow them. Meanwhile, Senators and Representatives can continue to collect generous campaign contributions. The Copyright Office can be the center of attention as it plays a crucial role in managing the multilateral negotiations and interpreting their results to Congress. Copyright lobbyists and trade organizations can collect hefty fees from their members, in return for supplying them with laws that will give them competitive advantages against the next new thing, whatever it is. Because the laws that emerge from this process don’t work very well, meanwhile, everyone can look forward to another round.
Long-Term Outcomes of a Cluster-Randomized Trial Testing the Effects of Blood Pressure Telemonitoring and Pharmacist ManagementBackground: Hypertension is a common condition and leading cause of cardiovascular disease. We previously reported results of a cluster-randomized trial evaluating a home blood pressure telemonitoring and pharmacist management intervention, with significant reductions in systolic blood pressure (SBP) favoring the intervention arm found over 6, 12 and 18 months and in diastolic blood pressure (DBP) found over 6 and 12 months. This analysis examined the durability of the intervention effect on blood pressure through 54 months of follow-up. Methods: The Hyperlink trial randomized 16 primary care clinics having 450 study-enrolled patients with uncontrolled hypertension to either telemonitoring intervention (TI) or usual care (UC) study arms. Blood pressure was measured as the mean of three measurements obtained at each research clinic visit. General linear mixed models utilizing a direct likelihood-based ignorable approach for missing data were used to examine change from baseline to 54 months in SBP and DBP. Results: Blood pressure measurements were obtained from 164 (74%) in UC and 162 (71%) of TI patients at the 54-month follow-up visit. For TI patients, baseline SBP was 148.2 mm Hg and 54-month follow-up was 131.2 mm Hg (-17.0 mm Hg, P < 0.001). For UC patients, baseline SBP was 147.7 mm Hg and 54-month follow-up was 131.7 mm Hg (-16.0 mm Hg, P < 0.001). The differential reduction by study arm in SBP from baseline to 54 months was -1.0 (95% confidence interval [CI]: -5.4 to 3.4, P = 0.63). For TI patients, baseline DBP was 84.4 mm Hg and 54-month follow-up was 77.8 (-6.6 mm Hg, P < 0.001). For UC patients, baseline DBP was 85.1 mm Hg and 54-month follow-up was 79.1 mm Hg (-6.0 mm Hg, P < 0.001). The differential reduction by study arm in DBP from baseline to 54 months was -0.6 mm Hg (95% CI: -3.5 to 2.4, P = 0.67). Conclusion: Significant blood pressure reductions in the TI arm relative to UC were no longer seen at 54-month follow-up. More work is needed to ascertain the optimal duration and reinforcement that could be used to maintain intervention benefits over a longer period of time.