By In Applied Ethics, Business Ethics, Ideas Comments (3)

Open Letter Regarding Compensation for Blood Plasma Donation

A couple of years ago, I posted about an open letter about the ethics of compensating bone marrow stem cell donors. Peter M. Jaworski and I, who co-founded, recently published a second open letter about blood plasma donation in Canada (on the site newly redesigned by me!). A number of Canadian provinces have passed, or are considering, legislation that would effectively make it illegal to pay people for blood plasma donations. (The letter concerns donations used to create plasma-based products like immune globulin, not for transfusions.) We and a collection of signatories—ethicists and economists including Soupers Jason Brennan and Jeff Moriarty—argue that this is a mistake. Below is a brief overview of the arguments for these bans (as we understand them) and our responses (as well as a bit of personal editorializing). In my view, this is an open and shut case. We would love to hear what other Soupers think. Are there better arguments for the bans we are missing? We also welcome more signatories (especially Canadian ones!).

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By In News and Events, Web/Tech Comments Off on Introducing MARGY: Free Management for Confidential Letters of Recommendation

Introducing MARGY: Free Management for Confidential Letters of Recommendation

Applicants on the academic job market spend thousands of dollars a year to have professional dossier services handle their confidential letters of recommendation. Some of this requires staff involvement: filling out forms, uploading to proprietary sites, etc. But a good deal of it is just sending emails. The only reason a middleperson is necessary is because the emails need to include a confidential attachment.

I am pleased to introduce MARGY [hard ‘g’] (Managing Academic Recommendations Gratis Yay), a FREE automated system for emailing confidential letters of recommendation. Letter-writers upload letters to MARGY’s secure server; applicants tell the system where to email those letters. Confidentiality is maintained via a whitelist; the system will only send letters to email addresses that have been confirmed as being maintained by a relevant hiring entity. (more…)

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By In News and Events, The Profession, Web/Tech Comments (4)

Populus: A Hopefully-Soon-to-Be Journal with Crowd-Sourced Peer Review

As has been widely discussed both here (at least a couple of times) and elsewhere, there are numerous problems with traditional publishing models. Some of these have been admirably addressed by the move to open access journals like Philosophers’ Imprint and Ergo. For the most part, however, these journals have simply exported the traditional publishing process to the Internet. I think it’s time we try something genuinely new. To that end, I’ve put together a prospectus for a new project, Populus, that will be both a curated archive (think (the non-horrific parts of) Reddit meets PhilPapers) and a philosophy journal with an experimental crowd-source peer review process. I am coming to you, Soupers, because:

  • I’m looking for feedback on the project itself and/or its expression through the prospectus.
  • I’m hoping those of you who support the project, or at least think it’s worth a go, will help me spread the word.
  • I’m looking for help.
    • I’d like to put together an editorial board whose association with the project will boost its credibility. I anticipate this’ requiring little actual work. If you are a famous person who likes my idea and would like to get on board, that would be great.
    • This project will likely require some funding. I’m looking for suggestions for sources.
    • I need people with web development or other relevant technical experience who would like to donate (or, if we get funding, be paid for) their time.
    • I’m looking for people who want to help or get involved in any other way, especially ones with the general entrepreneurial skills I lack.

Here that’s link one more time: Populus Prospectus

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By In Applied Ethics, Call For Papers, News and Events Comments Off on Call for Applications: Junior Faculty Manuscript Workshop

Call for Applications: Junior Faculty Manuscript Workshop

The Georgetown Institute for the Study of Markets and Ethics (GISME), located in Georgetown University’s McDonough School of Business, invites applications for the 2015 Junior Faculty Manuscript Workshop. The aim of the workshop is to provide critical feedback to junior scholars (i.e., junior faculty members, postdocs, or non-tenure-track professors) who are working on book-length manuscripts that address important normative issues related to the functioning of contemporary market societies.


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By In Ideas, Metaethics Comments (4)

Normative Necessity and Normative Knowledge

I hope Ralph won’t mind if I piggyback on his post, but I’m just getting started on a paper that’s partly about normative necessity, and I thought I’d get the old juices flowing with some PEA Soup discussion. (Plus it’s February and my name starts with a D!)


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By In Academia, The Profession Comments (1)

Philosophical Trajectories Official Launch

I am pleased to announce the official launch of Philosophical Trajectories, a data-collection project dedicated to helping philosophers learn from each other's publishing experiences. Many thanks to those of you who helped with the beta testing. I encourage everyone to participate; the more data we collect, the more useful the site will become. If you have any comments, questions or suggestions, please don't hesitate to email me.

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By In Academia, The Profession Comments Off on New Project Beta Test

New Project Beta Test

I am starting a new project to help philosophers share and learn from each other's publishing experiences. The project combines some of the goals of my (essentially defunct) Venue Poll project with ideas I got from using Andrew Cullison's fantastic Journal Surveys site. The project is currently in beta, and I'm asking people to check out the site, play with the survey, and provide feedback. All data collected during the beta is for testing purposes and will be deleted when the site officially goes live, at which point I encourage people to return and take the survey for real. In addition to looking for general feedback, I ask about a specific issue below the fold. 

Philosophical Trajectories []


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