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Re: Cost of Open Access

Joe, I'm not so sure that Open Access publishing costs, including
marketing, will come close to the cost the for-profit companies spend.  
In the first place, open access publishers are most often, if not always,
not-for-profit entities.  They don't have owners getting their big chunk
of the profits.  The open access publishers don't (I hope anyway) have
ceo's or whatever making hundreds of thousands per year or more.  The
entire idea of open access it to reduce the cost to consumers.  If they
had the same overhead as the for-profits or even some of the associations,
you'd be right, NOT feasible.  I don't, however, believe that to be the
case.  Not by a long shot.

Thomas L. Williams, AHIP
Director, Biomedical Libraries 
University of South Alabama
College of Medicine
Mobile, Al 36688-0002
tel. (251)460-6885
fax. (251)460-7638

On Fri, 6 Feb 2004, Joseph J. Esposito wrote:

> The single largest cost in the publication of traditional (or proprietary
> or copyrighted) works is the creation of a market for a product. Every
> single penny expended by a publisher directly or indirectly goes toward
> this single task. Not only will open access, for all its considerable
> merits, not reduce this cost, but OA will indeed significantly, even
> overwhelmingly increase the amount of money that will go into pairing
> authors with readers. For those who think of marketing with a lowercase
> "m" as simply an appeal to base instincts in the service of a product
> (e.g., half-naked women used to sell automobiles), it may be beside the
> point that capital "M" Marketing is a difficult and daring activity that
> involves the identification of needs, the sourcing of materials, the
> definition of a product, and the creation of demand. It is such a
> demanding activity that its practitioners attend elite research
> institutions to be trained to do it. The journals industry as we know it
> today did not spring full-blown from the mind of Zeus.
> OA will increase these costs because the suppression of production (what
> publishers do: they SUPPRESS production by serving as filters) will cease.
> Output will soar; finding the needle in a haystack will come to seem like
> an easy task.  All the algorithms of Google will not put Humpty Dumpty
> together again.
> Joseph J. Esposito