AnthroNews at the AAA has a post about the challenges facing it’s publications program. It doesn’t suck. Here are five things to think about:
- Would you pay higher membership fees if you knew that what you were paying for was a robust open access publishing program? You should, and not out of altruism, but because it will cost you less than it would to buy all the subscriptions your library is going to cancel in the next year or two.
- What exactly does the AAA pay Wiley-Blackwell to do? What besides “improved ISI impact factor rankings” do they give us, and can we buy the same services elsewhere for cheaper?
- Folks at AAA keep asking “Who is to bear the costs of Open Access”? Why is this so hard to answer? Given that there are no “customers” for AAA publications other than academics, the answer is dead simple: the people who already pay the costs of closed access must choose to pay the costs of open access. Remember that the money we get from WB (“royalties! hooray!”) comes out of your other pocket while you are not looking–i.e. your library, which pays the ever-increasing subscription costs. Or not.
- Why does 50% of the royalty revenue from Wiley Blackwell go to Anthropology News and American Anthropology, while the other 20 publication get the other 50%? Shouldn’t we rethink this allocation? Why is it so hard to find out where this money goes?
- “Posting comments is a benefit for AAA members”? Really? Honestly? I’d love to leave a comment–even a supportive one in this case– but apparently one must “leave your name so we can verify your membership and approve your comment.”