Last evening I attended a panel discussion entitled, “Making the Web work for Science” hosted by Science Commons. It was held at the Commonwealth Club in San Francisco and moderated by Tim O’Reilly. On the panel were Jimmy Wales, founder of Wikipedia; Stephen Friend, MD, PhD President, CEO and a Co-Founder of Sage; and John Wilbanks, VP of Science at Creative Commons.
While I was hoping more would be discussed on modeling the habits of researchers with web tools, the focus on Open Science was still a good conversation. At one point, Dr. Friend mentioned the need to publish negative results. With the ability to inexpensively self-publish and distribute data on the Web, why then, aren’t we seeing more of this?
Trying to answer from my own experience as a researcher, there are at least three reasons, or rather fears: