Academia.edu has a parasitical relationship to the public education system

Yet posting on Academia.edu is far from being ethically and politically equivalent to using an institutional open access repository….The key aspect of Academia.edu to be aware of in this respect is its business model. Unlike that of some for-profit publishers, this is not based on academic authors, their institutions, or their funders paying a fee for their research to be made available on a free and open basis: what’s known as author-pays, or an article processing charge (APC). Its financial rationale rests instead on the ability of the angel-investor and venture-capital-funded professional entrepreneurs who run Academia.edu to exploit the data flows generated by the academics who use the platform as an intermediary for sharing their research.

Professor Gary Hall, in Should This Be the Last Thing You Read on Academia.edu?

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