[open-science] JennyMolloy and PeterMR representing OKF at Open Science Summit

Paweł Szczęsny ps at pawelszczesny.org
Thu Oct 27 06:50:06 UTC 2011

2011/10/27 Peter Murray-Rust <pm286 at cam.ac.uk>:
> 2011/10/27 Paweł Szczęsny <ps at pawelszczesny.org>
>> Dear Peter,
>> I'm even more outraged after seeing the slides, than I was after
>> reading your blog posts.  Not only you show no data for assertion
>> "closed access means people die" (anecdotal evidence is not an
>> evidence - instead of formulating a hypothesis, you claim  "I don’t
>> think anyone can deny the truth of that conclusion."), but you imply
>> absolutely false connection between mortality rates in very poor
>> countries and lack of access to primary research literature.
> I did not say it was the major cause of mortality, but it is a contributor,
> including in the rich west. After talking with people who run patient groups
> there is anecdotal evidence that many patients cannot get access to the
> literature they want and that diagnoses are in error because of that.
> I shall take steps to create bodies of anecdotal evidence to support my
> assertion.

I can supply the same amount of anecdotal evidence showing how access
to information is harfmul in case of patients, starting from effects
of Wakefield's MMR paper and ending with plenty of stories from local
doctors. Additionally, rate of correct diagnoses can be improved (by
75% as some studies suggest) by adopting clinical decision support
systems (users of such systems do not need access to primary
literature). You haven't tested neither your nor null hypothesis.

>> This is very wrong. Majority of maternal mortality rate in Bangladesh
>> (see your last slide) is attributed to child marriage, lack of female
>> education and lack of skilled birth attendants. Access to scholarly
>> literature is absolutely irrelevant in such case. You'd need to
>> improve the standard of living and the quality of education first.
> this is an independent effect.

Nope, these things are heavily connected. Ability to effectively use
primary research literature increases with the standards of living
(access to equipment) and level of education. OA makes a lot of sense
for Western countries, a bit of sense for transitioning countries
(such as Poland) and almost no sense for poor countries where the
major issue is no access to clean water.

>> Please stop flashing images of poor people in your open foo talks.
>> You're harming the credibility of open science community.
> That's an opinion.

Indeed. You've harmed already mine, but it's an anecdotal evidence.



More information about the open-science mailing list