January 18, 2022

Report: “Academics Protest China’s Censorship Requests”

From The Scientist:

More than 1,000 people from around the world have signed a petition calling on major journal publishers not to censor their offerings within China in response to governmental pressure. The petition pledges a peer-review boycott, stating, “we will not agree to provide peer review service until editors confirm that their publications do not censor content in the [People’s Republic of China], and we call on all others to do so as well.”

The petition, launched in October 2017, followed news last summer that some publishers and databases based outside China had received requests from Chinese importers of their print and digital content to block online access to certain academic articles within the country, says the petition’s creator, Charlene Makley, an anthropologist at Reed College in Portland, Oregon. Cambridge University Press revealed in August that it had been ordered by its Chinese importer to block access to hundreds of articles in its The China Quarterly journal within the country; it reversed course following an outcry from academics. In October, the Financial Times reported that some articles in Springer Nature’s journals cannot be found within China, including many with terms such as “Tiananmen,” “Taiwan,” and “Tibet.”

Publishers mentioned in the article (including responses from several of them) include:

  • Elsevier
  • Sage
  • Springer Nature
  • Taylor & Francis
  • Wiley

Read the Complete Article

About Gary Price

Gary Price (gprice@mediasourceinc.com) is a librarian, writer, consultant, and frequent conference speaker based in the Washington D.C. metro area. Before launching INFOdocket, Price and Shirl Kennedy were the founders and senior editors at ResourceShelf and DocuTicker for 10 years. From 2006-2009 he was Director of Online Information Services at Ask.com, and is currently a contributing editor at Search Engine Land.