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Chronicle of Higher Ed. article on resignations

This may be of interest to those who follow the progress of SPARC partner
journals (such as _Journal of Machine Learning Research_, the alternative
to _Machine Learning_, discussed below) and similar kinds of

Thursday, October 18, 2001

40 Computer Scientists Abandon a Print Journal, Preferring Its Online


In another sign of scientists' discontent with costly traditional
journals, at least half the editorial board of a journal on artificial
intelligence has resigned to join a competing journal that is distributed
free online.

Forty computer scientists at the traditional journal, Machine Learning,
signed a resignation letter this month and distributed it widely. It said
the journal's subscription fee was so high that scientists' articles were
not reaching a wide-enough readership, and also complained about the
publisher's restrictions on circulating articles online.

Kluwer Academic Publishers, which produces the monthly journal, responded
by saying that it would increase the number of journal pages published
each year, from 1,100 to about 1,300, and reduce the annual subscription
rate for individuals, from as much as $460 to $120. The company also
agreed to disseminate articles on its Web site and to allow authors to
post journal articles on their Web sites. The subscription rate for
universities and research centers remains at $1,050.

Many of the scientists who resigned from Machine Learning said they
believe that traditional publishers, such as Kluwer, have become
superfluous to the circulation of scientific articles. And many predicted
that the new online publication they are backing, the Journal of Machine
Learning Research, would become the established journal on artificial
intelligence, perhaps threatening the viability of Machine Learning.



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Copyright 2001 by The Chronicle of Higher Education


Alison Buckholtz
Associate Enterprise Director
SPARC -- The Scholarly Publishing & Academic Resources Coalition
21 Dupont Circle, Ste. 800, Washington, DC  20036 USA
T: 202 296 2296 x115 * F: 202 872 0884 * E: alison@arl.org
http://www.arl.org/sparc    http://www.sparceurope.org