Terra Sigillata

Something to make Bora smile

Awhile back, I was given a PLoS T-shirt by Bora Zivkovic, science blogger extraordinaire and online community manager for PLoS-ONE, the flagship journal of the Public Library of Science. Every time I wear the dang thing, someone says something to me about the Open Access journal movement. Of course, I live in a rather science-dense town so I guess I shouldn’t be surprised. I guess I’m just surprised at the kinds of comments I get.

Yesterday I took a brief jaunt to our local indy bookstore. To get some ideas for my Tar Heel Tavern post for this weekend (submit your entries!!!), I was picking up Rob Christensen’s, “The Paradox of Tar Heel Politics: The Personalities, Elections, and Events That Shaped Modern North Carolina.” I saw a very nice young couple, probably in their early college years. (“Hey honey, here’s a book about the genome!”)

As I was perusing the stacks, the young man walked by and said:

I respect the mission that your shirt represents.

Not being the typical response I get about my T-shirts, I only muttered some words of thanks as he rushed by quickly. (Note that he said he respected the mission, not that he agreed with it or supported it.)

PLoS has probably given out thousands of T-shirts at scientific conferences – anyone else care to share the responses they get when they wear theirs?


  1. #1 Greg Laden
    May 2, 2008

    I know that book store, and I’ve met that guy. He says the same exact thing to everybody no matter what tee shirt they’re wearing. Locally well known crazy guy.


  2. #2 PhysioProf
    May 2, 2008

    Holy fuck, Laden! You actually said something funny!

  3. #3 Laelaps
    May 2, 2008

    “Every time I wear the dang thing, someone says something to me about the Open Access journal movement.”

    I usually get “What the hell is a PLoS?”

  4. #4 bill
    May 2, 2008

    I haven’t had much response, but yesterday I got “Oh hey, we just got a paper into PLoS Genetics — I wonder if they’ll give me a t-shirt”. I said they probably would, if he just asked.

  5. #5 Lisa Emrich
    May 2, 2008

    Well, now I want a T-shirt.

  6. #6 PhilipJ
    May 2, 2008

    You can get a shirt quite easily – just become a member of PLoS! Student memberships for those of us who are still students are quite cheap, and you get some neato stickers too.


  7. #7 McDawg
    May 3, 2008

    @ PhilipJ. Spot on. Being a non-profit org., I’m sure PLoS truly appreciate all real support. In return, you get some fab swag.

    Locally, little response if any (not many scientists round these parts).

    T-shirt wise, I wore nothing but PLoS (and BioMed Central) ones at the last biomed Conf I was at. Follows a detailed match report….


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