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Re: How many (peer reveiwed) journals are there?

I've been puzzled about some publishers starting scores of OA 
journals, wondering, what is the point? And finally the penny has 

'Publication costs' are frequently referred to as $xxxx per 
article, and its not feasible to recoup those kind of costs 
through author fees. Of course, costs are only of that order if, 
say, management of publishing companies indulge themselves with 
high wages and agreeable surroundings; its possible to run lean 
operations, and so have lower costs. But of course costs there 
are, however efficiently the basic publishing operations are run. 
But if you skip most of the basic publishing operations and in 
effect stick someone's submitted document on a website, with 
little more than a bit of re-styling by the typesetters, you 
don't have much in the way of costs. And a fairly low author fee 
more than covers that cost. And you don't need much in the way of 
sophisticated technology to bash out thousands of emails 
soliciting papers. A few chumps reply with cheque, and the 
publisher laughs all the way to the bank. Someone tell me that 
this is not really happening! Bill Hughes Multi-Science

----- Original Message -----
From: "David Prosser" <david.prosser@bodley.ox.ac.uk>
To: <liblicense-l@lists.yale.edu>
Sent: Friday, November 07, 2008 2:11 AM
Subject: RE: How many (peer reveiwed) journals are there?

> Joe was careful to make clear that his question was not to do 
> with the business model of journals, so it is unfortunate that 
> Phil could not resist the dig at OA publishers.  Having looked 
> at the first 20 titles listed by BMC I can't see one that 
> hasn't published papers this year.  Some have only published a 
> few papers, some have published many.  Maybe I've just missed 
> the 'scores' of titles that publish no papers, but frankly I'm 
> not going to check them all.  I'll just wait for Phil to 
> produce some evidence to back-up his claim.
> David
> -----Original Message-----
> From: owner-liblicense-l@lists.yale.edu
> [mailto:owner-liblicense-l@lists.yale.edu] On Behalf Of Phil Davis
> Sent: 05 November 2008 22:25
> To: liblicense-l@lists.yale.edu
> Subject: Re: How many (peer reveiwed) journals are there?
> I'm sorry to be coy, but I don't understand how this question 
> is meaningful.  Journals are defined (mostly) by the community 
> they serve. While we like to think of journals as collections 
> of articles, "article" also requires some definition.  And 
> while we consider peer-review to be a universal standard of 
> rigor, it is based on *whose* peers you are talking about.  A 
> journal can still be a journal even though it publishes so 
> infrequently, one would question whether calling it a journal 
> is even appropriate. Look at scores of BioMedCentral or Bentham 
> Science journals that seem to maintain their presence in spite 
> of attracting no articles.
> To the question of "what is a journal anyway?" we should add
> "what is the sound of one hand clapping?" and ponder this for
> some time.
> --Phil Davis
> Joseph J. Esposito wrote:
>> In a conversation with a client recently, I made the offhand
>> remark about "the 24,000 peer-reviewed journals."  She said, Not
>> so fast!  That number is suspect; the actual number is both
>> bigger and smaller.  The number is smaller, in her view, because
>> only a subset of journals have a careful peer review process; and
>> it is larger in that the number of journals continues to grow,
>> but the review process is often sketchy at best.  (As far as I
>> know, none of this has anything to do with whether a journal is
>> open access or toll access.)
>> Clearly there are matters of definition at issue here:  What must
>> peer review consist of in order for it to earn the use of the
>> name? And while we are at it, what is a journal anyway?
>> I would appreciate hearing from anyone who has some thoughts on
>> this topic.
>> How many journals are there?
>> Joe Esposito