The field of microbiology has experienced significant growth due to transformative advances in technology and the influx of scientists driven by a curiosity to understand how bacteria, archaea, microbial eukaryotes, and viruses interact with each other and their environment to sustain myriad biochemical processes that are essential for maintaining the Earth. With this explosion in scientific output, a significant bottleneck has been the ability to disseminate this new knowledge to peers and the public in a timely manner. Preprints have emerged as a tool that a growing number of microbiologists are using to overcome this bottleneck and to recruit in an effective and transparent way a broader pool of reviewers prior to submitting to traditional journals. Although use of preprints is still limited in the biological sciences, early indications are that preprints are a robust tool that can complement and enhance peer-reviewed publications. As publishing moves to embrace advances in internet technology, there are many opportunities for preprints and peer-reviewed journals to coexist in the same ecosystem.