Like all good things, Nature Network has (sort of) come to an end. Via email, I was informed this morning of its imminent demise and conversion into a community archive, where past conversations and collaborations would be hosted, but no new posts can be created, and there would be no longer any log-in access.
It was probably coming in due course. As the Nature.com Communities team posted:
In 2012, we moved our bloggers to a new home at www.scilogs.com, where they continue to thrive as part of the Nature Publishing Group family. Scientific American has also fostered a lively network of bloggers over on the Scientific American Blogging Network. Nature Network has become primarily a home for spam, with discussions and collaborations happening elsewhere.
Having experienced that daily deluge of spam in various Nature.com forums (witnessed by means of email notifications), I cannot say this surprised me to any great extent. However, upon my recognition of this finality, memories flooded my mind – how I stepped into the world of academic blogging via Nature Blogs, the discussions, the occasional heated disagreements, the teething problems of the technical platform, and so forth, and most of all, the people… Maxine Clarke (may she rest in peace), Matt Brown, Lou Woodley, Laura Wheeler, Khalil Cassimally, Richard Grant, Henry Gee, Jennifer Rohn, Stephen Curry, Lee Turnpenny, Austin Elliott, GrrlScientist, Bob O’Hara, and so many more. I could only nod my head in deep and sorrowful agreement when the Communities team wrote:
Saying goodbye to Nature Network feels akin to moving out of the house where we grew up, and hosted some fabulous parties through the years. Bittersweet, but with happy memories and lots to be proud of – in many ways Nature Network was trail-blazing especially in the early days. We have learnt much from our 6-year experiment and we are building on that knowledge to develop new products and services to improve scientists’ workflow, and to help you collaborate and build your careers.
Far from xkcd’s advice in this popular graphic, I am genuinely sad that it has come to this.