[Date Prev][Date Next][Thread Prev][Thread Next][Date Index][Thread Index]

Re: Question about open access and print

David's reply is from the point of view of the librarian. The publisher's perspective is different, but the outcome is not necessarily at odds with the librarian's.

For a publisher (or the vendor of any product or service) the term of art is "channel conflict." This conflict occurs when the sale of something in one form or venue undermines its sale in another. Sometimes multiple channels and forms can be mutually supportive, sometimes not. The classic case of this is the fear of yesteryear on the part of book publishers, who believed that feature films would undercut the sale of a book; of course we now know the opposite to be true for these particular channels and forms. On the other hand, tickets for theatrical releases now appear to be declining because of the widespread availability of DVDs and wide-screen TVs. So there is an art to determining when channel conflict will occur, and vendors don't always get this right. Some publishers continue to license journals to aggregators like EBSCO and Gale, but there have been some high-profile defections recently, which were likely driven by channel conflict.

This can indeed have large implications for Open Access. To the originating publisher (that is, the organization that financed the creation of the intellectual property--the Elseviers, the Wileys of the world) OA is simply another channel. It can in some instances enhance the sale of toll-based publications (which is probably mostly the case today in the STM journals world), and it can in some instances cannibalize those sales (in my view the inevitable outcome of OA, for which reason no publisher with financial responsibility should support OA in any form or to any degree, as its cumulative effect is pernicious). But, again, this is an art, and not everyone will share Richard Feinman's publisher's judgment.

Some will criticize Richard Feinman's publisher for being short-sighted and mercenary, but, romantic that I am, I prefer to think of this publisher as visionary and mercenary. Like the individual who declines to purchase an SUV to safeguard future generations from global warming, this publisher is working to ensure the capital base for scholarly communications.

Joe Esposito

----- Original Message -----
From: "David Goodman" <dgoodman@Princeton.EDU>
To: <liblicense-l@lists.yale.edu>
Sent: Wednesday, March 01, 2006 4:15 PM
Subject: Re: Question about open access and print

Dear Richard,

The prospective publisher is right.

You are contemplating dual publication, and the sequence you propose is regarded by librarians somewhere between a nuisance and a disaster. If the papers were published in a formal journal, OA or not, electronic or not, they have been published. if the submissions to the conference are peer reviewed, and in most good conferences they are, they have been published in a peer-reviewed journal, and further publication is unnecessary.

If those attending the conference wish a fancy book as a rememberance, they are perfectly free to pay for vanity publication, but there is no reason anyone else need bother. No library will deliberately buy it. Those that buy it by accident, generally because the publisher advertisements delibrately do not mention the duplication, often warn other librarians on appropriate subject lists.

There are better ways. Many scientists do not regard most conference publications as formal publications, and post only the slides. They then prepare a more elaborate if less colorful paper, with a proper review of the literature [etc.], and submit it to a journal under a slightly different title to avoid confusion, mentioning that some of the material was previously presented at a conference. The reviewers will probably check, and if too much of the data has been previously presented with the same graphs, will reject the paper.

Alternatively, if the conference does have a formal proceedings with all the papers, which is properly indexed by the A&I services, why would one try to publish the same paper in a journal as well?

Most will publish a different paper for a journal, typically with additional data, that will refer to the conference but does not duplicate it. People with a great deal of data sometimes assort them in ways that are diffcult to fathom, but a journal referee should insist on some clarity here as well.

Peer review has many uses, and preventing duplicate publication is certainly one.

This has nothing to do with open access. I would not acquire a book that duplicated a journal whether or not one or both is OA. My practice when such was encountered was to not buy the book, and also cancel the journal, figuring that if it had to go to such lengths to get content, the content was unlikely to be of much value.

Dr. David Goodman
Associate Professor
Palmer School of Library and Information Science
Long Island University
and formerly
Princeton University Library


----- Original Message -----
From: Richard Feinman <RFeinman@downstate.edu>
Date: Tuesday, February 28, 2006 6:22 pm
Subject: Question about open access and print
To: liblicense-l@lists.yale.edu

Consider the following scenario:

You are the organizer of a scholarly conference and you publish
the individual talks in an open access journal like, say
Nutrition & Metabolism.  You now want to publish a hard bound
edition where the individual papers are brought together with
some connecting copy and introductions to individual articles.
Although a prospective publisher believes you when you tell them
that popular books do better when they are available online, they
are concerned that libraries will not buy a book where the
content is already available, Since it is a scholarly conference
and they are an academic publisher, they are more concerned with
library sales than individual sales.  To what extent are their
fears justified?  Would members of the list not buy a book for
their library if content were already online?

Along the same lines, if a journal is published free on line and
there is
a charge only for the print edition, to what extent does this affect

Is this a factor in the further evolution of open access?

Regards, RF