Scientists sign petition to boycott academic publisher Elsevier 2012-08-20


“More than 3,000 academics, including several Fields medal-winning mathematicians, have put their names to a petition declaring their intention to boycott the academic publisher Elsevier... The ‘Cost of Knowledge’ petition claims Elsevier charges ‘exorbitantly high’ prices for its journals and criticises its practice of selling journals in ‘bundles’ so libraries ‘must buy a large set with many unwanted journals, or none at all’. It says the publisher makes ‘huge profits by exploiting their essential titles, at the expense of other journals’. The petition also criticises Elsevier's support for the Stop Online Piracy Act (SOPA), PIPA and the US Research Works Act, which it says are an attempt to ‘restrict the free exchange of information’... Elsevier has disputed the claims, saying that its average list price per article is $10 (£6.50), which is ‘bang on the industry mean’, and that volume-based discounts bring the effective price per article down to $2, which is ‘slightly below the industry average’. It said the claim about bundles was ‘absolutely false’. ‘Elsevier allows you to buy articles at the level of the individual article, to buy a single journal, any combination of any number of journals and everything we have,’ said Dr Nick Fowler, director of global academic relations at Elsevier. ‘There are benefits that come from taking more, which is a very standard practice, but that doesn't mean you don't have the choice [not to] – but then you can't expect a discount.’...He added that Elsevier would be discussing the issues with academics who have signed the petition... he added that there were at least 7m researchers globally, which put the 3,000 petitioners ‘in perspective in terms of volume’... [Gowers wrote], ‘What many people would like, including me, would be to get rid of journals altogether and instead have free-floating editorial boards that provide a stamp of approval to certain papers that would themselves appear in places such as the arXiv’... ‘But it may be – and this seems more likely to me – that what is needed is a variety of less dramatic measures: the setting up of open-access alternatives...’”



08/16/2012, 06:08

From feeds:

Open Access Tracking Project (OATP) »

Tags: oa.business_models oa.publishers oa.comment oa.usa oa.legislation oa.negative oa.rwa oa.nih oa.advocacy oa.signatures oa.petitions oa.boycotts oa.elsevier oa.copyright oa.libraries



Date tagged:

08/20/2012, 15:16

Date published:

02/03/2012, 16:01