figshare is a repository where users can make all of their research outputs available in a citable, sharable and discoverable manner. figshare allows users to upload any file format to be visualisable in the browser so that figures, datasets and media can be disseminated in a way that the current scholarly publishing model does not allow. The persistence of the research data is ensured via CLOCKSS and all research objects are assigned a DOI. All data is persistently stored online under the most liberal Creative Commons licence, waiving copyright where possible. This allows scientists to access and share the information from anywhere in the world with minimal friction. All filetypes are sharable and figshare endeavours to make all filetypes visualisable in a web browser.
Every experiment that is completed without error in the methods is valuable. Researchers investigate things because the question is interesting and supposedly unanswered. This means that other researchers will at some point ask that same question. Just because the hypothesis didn’t turn out to be true, doesn’t mean that this data should be thrown away.
With figshare, you can share your negative results or results that you were not planning to publish. You can make raw data available or supplementary material that journals cannot handle linked to from the published article. You can even make your papers and posters available and citable.
The dissemination of research data is something that has been done in a well-defined manner for 300 years. With the advent of the internet, many established distribution models have been redefined and improved on. The outputs of academic research are evolving and much of it is becoming digitized and growing in size. There are many good example of how web platforms that efficiently distribute digital content, such as YouTube and itunes. In this presentation, we will explain how figshare is following their lead in an effort to disrupt one of the last remaining content distributing systems to be revolutionized by the internet, and how open access makes all of this possible.