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Education Science

Free Scientific Journals 29

RichiH writes "Most of you have probably heard that science journals are getting more and more expensive. In hard numbers, 215% increase in price over the last fifteen years. What proves a major problem for libraries and interested individuals is great for the publishers. Reed Elsevier, with about 1700 scientific magazines the leading publisher, had a profit margin of 33.8% in 2003. With most research which is published, the taxpayers get the bill while the publishers get the money. So now for the good news: People are starting to fight this. Creative Commons is a good way, for example. Additionally, there are several magazines available which are based on a author-pays basis. If this sounds like a strange idea, think again. If Cell prints an article by you, you are charged $1000 for the first and $250 for each additional graphic you include. And this is for a reader-pays magazine! With PLoS Biology, the author pays $1500 for the whole article and the reader gets the magazine for free on the internet. Biomed Central lists 100 free magazines while the Directory of Open Access Journals lists an amazing 1425. I for one considered getting the $160 a year print subscription of PLoS just Because."
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Free Scientific Journals

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  • by chihiro ( 842974 ) on Friday January 28, 2005 @11:54AM (#11503875)
    Name recognotion is crucial, which is why PLoS Biology stands a good chance. It has had a pretty high profile in the Biosciences. A number of well respected scientists were instrumental in starting PLoS up, and the editor was poached from a big journal (Nature I think, but I may have misremembered).

    The papers I've seen it PLoS Bio so far have been pretty good. Not as 'high profile' as Nature but solid work, and with papers long enough to avoid the 'tabloid' tendency that Nature sometimes has (short papers, exciting results, very little detail)

    All power to PLoS, lets hope the other PLoS journals also meet with success.
  • No. (Score:3, Informative)

    by linoleo ( 718385 ) on Friday January 28, 2005 @11:10PM (#11510992) Journal
    IANAS, but I imagine that such review might take some $ to accomplish.

    IAAS, and peer review takes zero $ to accomplish. The action editor (who works for love) emails the article (in PDF) to the reviewers (who work for love), who email their reviews back, whereupon the action editor makes the call - publish, revise, or reject. The publishers do not put any money into that system, and have indeed been scamming the public for years.

    Establishing a solid reputation, quality control, and peer review process are challenges for any new journal, whether online or not. It can be done though - for instance, the free online Journal of Machine Learning Research [] has within the few years of its existence rocketed to the top of the journal citation reports [] in its field.
  • by SgtChaireBourne ( 457691 ) on Saturday January 29, 2005 @01:10AM (#11511598) Homepage
    The Internet Public Library has the largest catalog of peer reviewed journals, they're just currently mixed in with all the others [].

Love may laugh at locksmiths, but he has a profound respect for money bags. -- Sidney Paternoster, "The Folly of the Wise"