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The Media Science

PeerJ, A New Open Access Megajournal Launches 61

Mirk writes "Academic researchers want to make their papers open access for the world to read. If they use traditional publishers like Elsevier, Springer or Taylor & Francis, they'll be charged $3000 to bring their work out from behind the paywall. But PeerJ, a new megajournal launched today and funded by Tim O'Reilly, publishes open access articles for $99. That's not done by cutting corners: the editorial process is thorough, and they use rigorous peer-review. The cost savings come from running lean and mean on a born-digital system. The initial batch of 30 papers includes one on a Penn and Teller trick and one on the long necks of dinosaurs." $99 entitles you to publish an article a year, for life. $300 nets you unlimited articles published per year.
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PeerJ, A New Open Access Megajournal Launches

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  • by betterunixthanunix ( 980855 ) on Wednesday February 13, 2013 @10:33AM (#42883153)
    Charging authors to publish is not much better than charging people to read the articles. What we truly need is a system that is paid for by universities, cooperatively, that allows anyone to submit a paper and allows anyone to download as many or as few papers as they would like.
  • by Anonymous Coward on Wednesday February 13, 2013 @10:40AM (#42883241)

    The charge is a very small amount. One would think it is ~ 1% of the dollar value of time invested in writing the paper.

    What is achieves is to filter serious papers from frivolous ones and this cuts the total cost of peer reviewing them.

  • by sribe ( 304414 ) on Wednesday February 13, 2013 @11:13AM (#42883647)

    In other words, we still have some of the problems that open access should solve. While we no longer have the issue of individuals being unable to access knowledge, we are still saying that research can only be done by those with university affiliations or who are wealthy.

    A $99 one-time fee does not limit this to the "wealthy". If you can't afford $99, you're not likely to be able to do any meaningful research either.

  • Re:Yawn (Score:2, Insightful)

    by Anonymous Coward on Wednesday February 13, 2013 @03:25PM (#42886723)

    You seem to oddly leave out the review process. Anyone can host random papers on the web for very little money, and stick an official sounding name on it. That was true even before the open access thing gained momentum, and really has nothing to do with open access at all.

    It all comes down to quality and consistency. This depends heavily on the review process, and how well it is managed. But once you've established a record of doing that well, the readership, citations, and better submissions will follow. You might not be dethroning the top journals that have decades or centuries of tradition keeping them at the top of their fields, but there is a lot of room for solid, second tier journals.

    And speaking from experience, the majority of the effort isn't about getting it up on the web, but managing the review process. It is one thing to volunteer to write a review for a specific paper when asked to. To be in charge of finding reviewers, keeping them on track, and dealing with the disagreements is a whole different mess, especially with some sort of standards of quality. Between that and trying to fix an author's wonky LaTeX so it formats correctly, $100 sounds like a good deal, as I would need to be paid more than that to do such work like that again.

"It takes all sorts of in & out-door schooling to get adapted to my kind of fooling" - R. Frost