The rising popularity of open access (OA) publishing in scholarly communities is purportedly leading to increased public access to knowledge. This is especially true for discussions of scientific research. However, we argue that while there have been significant moves to provide better material or technological access to research, OA advocates must still tackle the issue of making original scientific research articles conceptually accessible to broader publics. Despite being freely available on the Web, research articles are not by default linguistically or conceptually accessible to the global public(s) they are partially intended to reach with the move to OA. In this paper we examine how OA, coupled with innovative scientific communication practices, can help align the ideals of OA with the realities of complex, specialized genres of writing to provide better, more “open,” access to research. We look to PLOS ONE and the PLOS Blog Network to consider how material access coupled with communication strategies developed by bloggers can work together toward more openly accessible original scientific research articles.