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RE: Post Brussels : Elsevier and Australian STM debate 'sprouts'

I was a publisher of some 50 medical and nursing journals from 
the mid-1980s to mid-1990s.  All our journal editors were paid a 
fee/honorarium or royalty in addition to having their expenses 
covered.  We published a number of journals under contract for 
learned societies;  in these cases the societies themselves paid 
the editors (often extremely generously) out of their share of 
the profits.

In fact, we calculated that we paid a significantly higher 
percentage of journal revenues to editors and proprietors than 
was the case for books

It would be fascinating to survey journal publishers to find out 
the distribution of paid/unpaid journal editors, and any 
correlation with the type of publisher, subject area etc...

Sally Morris
Consultant, Morris Associates (Publishing Consultancy)
Email:  sally@morris-assocs.demon.co.uk

-----Original Message-----
[mailto:owner-liblicense-l@lists.yale.edu] On Behalf Of Sandy Thatcher
Sent: 01 March 2007 00:50
To: liblicense-l@lists.yale.edu
Subject: Re: Post Brussels : Elsevier and Australian STM debate 'sprouts'

I cannot claim to know how commercial or society publishers
compensate editors of their journals, but I can tell you that
Penn State Press pays not a cent to any of the editors of its 11
journals-and I suspect we are not alone among university press
journal publishers.

Sandy Thatcher
Penn State University Press

>I just want to comment on one aspect of this posting and ignore 
>Colin's ill-informed financial suppositions about the incomes of 
>the big players. I am sure that he can get a grant to trawl 
>through the returns from the public companies concerned.
>He and is friends ("a number of us in Australia") are almost 
>certainly misinformed. If I was a journal editor would I tell 
>Colin how much I earned? I would not.
>I have never worked for Elsevier but I would be amazed if that 
>company do not pay their editors and the editorial 
>infrastructure well and at a rate rising considerably above 
>inflation. My own experience of a publisher is along these 
>lines. I have worked for Academic, OUP, and Chapman & Hall and I 
>now work part-time for Blackwell - though I am not posting for 
>them or from them. I know that all the editors whom I currently 
>deal with get paid. My memory is that this is true of all the 
>hundreds of journals I have published in the past.
>I am certain that Elsevier is not different from these 
>publishers and I would very surprised if Australia was different 
>in this particular way.
>I know that there are some self-published society journals where 
>the editor is not paid by the society. I came across one example 
>the other day. However this editor was supported by an 
>impressive paid infrastructure and he agreed that his successor 
>would have to be paid.
>My own experience of publishing, which is rather greater than 
>that of Colin (now I know a publisher), is that, whereas in the 
>past editors could use the resources of their departments, this 
>is usually no longer the case in most parts of the world and 
>this adds considerably to editorial costs. There are other 
>inflationary factors at work too. Because of the increased 
>pressures of academic life to do research and publish the 
>results, publishers are now frequently expected to "buy-out" 
>consultancy time - at least in those disciplines where 
>consultancy is a fact of life and a reward that supplements poor 
>academic salaries.
>Anthony Watkinson