[Open Access (storefront)]1Academic publishing is a complete scam. Many people are aware of the cost to access journal articles (usually ~£20 for a paper), the writing of which is often funded via the public (through research grants, general university funding, fees, etc.). What people are less aware of is: 1. Many universities are currently ‘double paying’ by paying for articles in closed access journals to be made open access, but still having to pay the subscription for those journals (and certainly last year, [open access articles were still being ‘sold’ and marked ‘all rights reserved’]2 by some publishers) 2. [Huge costs]3 (note nuance in that link though) for making articles open access (and [recent changes to ‘green access’ seem to have created prohibitive embargo periods]4 on that route) 3. Massive costs for many edited books – I’m looking at you Springer – where you’re looking at ~£80-£150 average (I’ve seen these go up to £3000), with £20-30 chapter costs, for a book that is: 1. Written for free by authors (often using public funding) 2. Curated/edited for free by academic editors 3. Reviewed for free by academic reviewers 4. Edited with minimal support – publishers are, quite rightly using templates and formatting tools to encourage authors to pre-format their work, but then using editorial cost as a justification for purchase cost 5. Not included in institutional packages, so they need to be bought separately 4. One I hadn’t quite realised was the ridiculous costs some publishers charge for any reuse of material (I’ve been quoted £1200 for using a single image in my thesis, needless to say I’ll do without). This is particularly irksome for figures which unlike text can’t just be quoted. This is particularly problematic where figures actually form the basis of a model, and really need to be reused to illustrate that model. I suspect many authors are unaware of this and would not wish to restrict such reuse of their graphical illustrations. EURGH, low cost open access now please… * [jisc open access resources]5 * [Report of the Working Group on Expanding Access to Published Research Findings – the Finch Group]6

  • [Open Knowledge Open Access Working Group]7


  1. /static/2015/05/open_access_storefront.jpg

  2. http://svpow.com/2014/03/11/how-is-it-possible-that-elsevier-are-still-charging-for-copies-of-open-access-articles/

  3. http://blogs.lse.ac.uk/impactofsocialsciences/2012/12/19/taylor-cost-publish-gold-open-access/

  4. https://www.timeshighereducation.co.uk/news/elsevier-sharing-policy-criticised-over-its-open-access-credentials/2020406.article

  5. http://www.jisc.ac.uk/open-access

  6. http://www.researchinfonet.org/publish/finch/

  7. http://access.okfn.org/