I really agree that academic writing should be open-source. There's a guy in science evangelizing for the same idea; apparently his PLoS Biology journal is really popular.
I have a new rhetorical tool that I like to use in judging systems. "Could they work at Google?" The gist of the question being, could they have the creativity, drive for innovation, and the will to kick Microsoft's ass, the lack of fear to make a radical business model and put it into action?
Some academics could do that kind of thing, some couldn't.
This is the grad school experience in two sentences:
Like many other grad students, I spent eight years trying to turn myself into a marketable commodity -- and eight years resisting. The institution which I attended also exploited my labor in the sense that it gave me what amounted to a full-time job at a part-time salary with no benefits.