Tuesday, October 03, 2006

Still More Hybrid Journal Programs: T & F and RSC

In the last several days, both Taylor & Francis (last week) and the Royal Society of Chemistry (yesterday) have announced hybrid OA journal programs. T & F's OA option is called iOpenAccess. RSC's doesn't seem to have a snazzy name (I may have missed something). Both are the usual sort of thing; authors or other submitters can pay a fee in order for their accepted articles to be made freely available. I won't go into too many details here; Peter Suber does his usual great job and provides much information and commentary on both options on his blog (http://www.earlham.edu/~peters/fos/fosblog.html). There are also press releases for both:

Taylor & Francis: http://www.informa.com/corporate/investors/press_releases/2006/2006-09-28_20017377567.htm;jsessionid=783FB2EE031A3EF1293484D00ED96C8E

Royal Society of Chemisty: http://www.rsc.org/chemistryworld/News/2006/September/02100602.asp

There's more information on the RSC option at https://mx2.arl.org/Lists/SPARC-OAForum/Message/3366.html and at http://www.rsc.org/Publishing/Journals/OpenScience/FAQ.asp

I will mention a few things, though. First, I noticed that both programs are not cheap; $3100 US for T & F and 1000-2500 UKP for RSC. These may be the most expensive submission fees for hybrid OA journals; will this be a deterent for some authors? Second, the T & F OA option will only apply to 175 of their STM journals. The T & F journal suite includes many social sciences and humanities titles; I wonder if OA figures into the planning for these journals? Finally, I was pleased to see that T & F will be looking at subscription costs for those journals that are included in the iOpenAccess program:

We undertake to review the subscription prices of each journal with respect to the uptake of the iOpenAccess initiative, and the relevant information will be published on each journal’s home page at www.tandf.co.uk/journals.

RSC has indicated that they may do the same.

An important final question: Which big publishers have not established a hybrid OA journal program? There may be a few but nothing comes to mind. I'll have to think about it.

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