This edition of The African Journal of Information and Communication (AJIC) addresses an aspect of 'information society' discourse that has taken shape in the world of universities, research, publishing and creative works. Given the potential offered by the Internet to leapfrog the divides that currently inhibit the reach and impact of African research, this thematic edition explores an African perspective on scholarly communications in the 21st century. In a continent increasingly linked through the Internet and through telecommunications infrastructure, the flow of information and knowledge across national boundaries presents an opportunity to universities, academics, students and researchers to increase the volume, quality and relevance of their knowledge outputs. However, this opportunity may remain 'theoretical' and beyond the reach of many universities in the region, based on a range of challenges in a number of spheres. These challenges include using Internet-based journal publishing platforms and publishing under Open Access licences such as Creative Commons.