I was chatting with some department peeps a few weeks back, and a post-doc from one of the big labs here remarked that a nice perk of being in Famous Dude's lab was that it was much easier to get people at other institutions to send him their reagents. In grad school, he said, he often got the runaround because (he thought) his PI was not as well known, despite being at a very well known Classy Institution.
In contrast, yesterday my not-so-famous PI wrote to a PI at a different institution requesting a virus. Less than half an hour went by before we got a friendly, positive response--no-strings-attached save for confirmation of IACUC and EHS approval. I was floored at how easy that was. It was the kind of experience that makes you believe in people again, you know?
Now, I'm pretty sure that if your research is funded by NIH, it is a generally accepted (if generally unenforced) rule that you're supposed to share your published antibodies, constructs, transgenic mice, etc with anyone who asks. But are there things about the person who asks that would keep you from sharing? Has anyone ever denied your request, and if so, did they have a good reason?
Please take my super fun poll (more than one answer is allowed!), and elaborate on your sharing experiences in the comments here.