Traditional versus new wave journals?

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David Wojick

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Sep 8, 2017, 7:01:40 AM9/8/17
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Here is how I see it:

1. Traditional journals are expensive, slow and heavily moderated via extensive external peer review. There are over 30,000 such journals, publishing perhaps two million articles a year.

2. New wave OA journals are cheap, fast and lightly moderated. Their numbers and volume appear to be growing rapidly. My best guess is that there are well over 10,000 new wave journals, publishing perhaps half a million articles a year.

3. Both models have pros and cons. I have yet to see a calm discussion of the tradeoffs.

Perhaps OSI could take up this complex issue.

David

David Wojick, Ph.D.
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Anthony Watkinson

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Sep 8, 2017, 7:56:49 AM9/8/17
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David and I have interacted about this before. I work on the attitudes and practices of early career researchers. I also publish papers. I do not think this I how they see the scene. Nor do I.

I agree about the "new wave" journals but I am not at all sure what "lightly moderated" means. All researchers I know of expect peer review but (as we all know) accept PLOS One definitions of peer review. Is that lightly moderated? The PLOS One mission is to be tough on methodology - it is correct and is it done properly BUT are not interested in whether or not the results are classified as "important" or relevant. There is also the case of local peer review only. That is cheaper. Traditional journals have usually insisted on "international" peer review. I would be interested to learn what AJOL and INASP think

But the researchers I interview and lots of others too recognise the existence of journals which claim to do peer review but do not do it. All of us know of such journals. They take the money and publish. We all of us if we are researchers get emails from these journals. This is surely a different animal

I am not suggesting that my categories are properly worked out but I am throwing them out for consieration

Anthony
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David Wojick

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Sep 8, 2017, 9:05:21 AM9/8/17
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Lightly reviewed means there is no external review or it is done quickly with little if any required rewriting. S&B found an average time from submission to publication of around three months, compared to the much longer time for traditional journals. Plus there looks to be much higher acceptance rates, which also greatly shortens the delay. In fact the differences in cost and speed are likely driven by the differences in review. In extreme cases like OMICS publication is promised within two weeks of submission.

Regarding attitudes, that something like a million researchers are publishing in new wave journals suggests considerable acceptance. Research suggests that many of these authors cannot publish in traditional journals for a variety of reasons. Other research indicates that some people publish in new wave precisely because of the speed and limited review hassle. This is part of the complexity.

David

Glenn Hampson

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Sep 8, 2017, 12:05:27 PM9/8/17
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Hi David,

 

I'm going to request that we move this conversation to our list of research projects. We've pretty much exhausted this topic here (and exhausted people as well!). The key components of this study might look like this---let me know how this looks to you:

 

  • How rapidly is the current scholcomm publishing system changing?
  • What forces are driving this change (and where are they more significant, and why)?
  • What kinds of changes are happening (and where)?
  • What are the pros and cons of these changes (both hypothetical and actual/measured)?
  • What should be the response of the scholcomm community to these changes (e.g., enforce international standards for peer review)?

 

Where we’re at now with this conversation is that you’re enthusiastic and everyone else is terrified, so we need to get on the same page before moving forward. So adding this to our list, here’s what we have now:

 

  1. Cash incentives to publish: No group yet. Any interest?
  2. Publisher profit margins: A group of industry leaders and analysts might be willing to pull together an authoritative report on the profit margins of commercial publishers but we haven’t started these conversations yet.
  3. Open protocols: No group discussion or work yet. Several folks stepped forward with interest, however.
  4. Blacklist: Should a new blacklist be developed? A whitelist? Some other solution? Various ideas were discussed at length both on and off list and in a side group but we didn’t reach a final decision.
  5. APCgrabber.com: A website that pulls in data on APCs for easy comparison or where publishers can self-post pricing info (granted there would be lots of caveats). We also referred to this idea as pricechopperscience.com. Of course, this idea preceded the blacklist discussion---we wouldn’t want to create a tool that makes it easier for fraud dealers to peddle their wares.
  6. Open impacts: Follow-up on conversation regarding hotly-disputed CPIP report on open impacts, this time looping in one of the report’s authors.
  7. iTunes model: Maybe survey students, researchers, publishers, etc. for potential interest? Or has this idea been dismissed?
  8. Predatory publishing: What do we know about the dimensions of this issue? We have spoken about blacklists, APCs and cash incentives; more broadly, the entire issue of predatory publishing deserves a deeper look. We’ve heard about the fraud, deception, and so on, but is there also “good” in this system insofar as giving scholars a way to publish more quickly and cheaply?

 

Thanks,

 

Glenn

 

Glenn Hampson
Executive Director
National Science Communication Institute (nSCI)
Program Director
Open Scholarship Initiative (OSI)

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Rick Anderson

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Sep 8, 2017, 12:26:17 PM9/8/17
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Glenn, I’m not sure anyone is terrified. I do think that many of us have become exhausted at having to make the same factual observations over and over again, and then having the same issues continually resurface as if they hadn’t already been addressed.

---
Rick Anderson
Assoc. Dean for Collections & Scholarly Communication
Marriott Library, University of Utah
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Glenn Hampson

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Sep 8, 2017, 1:02:39 PM9/8/17
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Hyperbole---sorry. But yes---as OSI2017 delegates noted, the OSI list can be a pain in this regard. So, in response to this concern, we’ll be introducing better (or at least different) tools soon for digging into contentious and/or complicated issues like this one.

 

Best,

 

Glenn

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David Wojick

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Sep 8, 2017, 3:08:09 PM9/8/17
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Okay, Glenn.

However I cannot agree with this apparently blanket use of the term "predatory." By accident I seem to have become OSI's representative for the new wave of over 1000 low cost OA publishers and 10,000 journals. Not that I know any of them; I just study them, but I guess diversity starts small like that. That they are as a group predatory in any reasonable use of that term is questionable, to say the least. Perhaps you can find a more neutral term, or create a different topic description so as to separate the new wave issues from the predatory ones.

David


At 12:04 PM 9/8/2017, Glenn Hampson wrote:
Hi David,
 
I'm going to request that we move this conversation to our list of research projects. We've pretty much exhausted this topic here (and exhausted people as well!). The key components of this study might look like this---let me know how this looks to you:
 
  • How rapidly is the current scholcomm publishing system changing?
  • What forces are driving this change (and where are they more significant, and why)?
  • What kinds of changes are happening (and where)?
  • What are the pros and cons of these changes (both hypothetical and actual/measured)?
  • What should be the response of the scholcomm community to these changes (e.g., enforce international standards for peer review)?
 
Where we’re at now with this conversation is that you’re enthusiastic and everyone else is terrified, so we need to get on the same page before moving forward. So adding this to our list, here’s what we have now:
 
  1. Cash incentives to publish: No group yet. Any interest?
  1. Publisher profit margins: A group of industry leaders and analysts might be willing to pull together an authoritative report on the profit margins of commercial publishers but we haven’t started these conversations yet.
  1. Open protocols: No group discussion or work yet. Several folks stepped forward with interest, however.
  1. Blacklist: Should a new blacklist be developed? A whitelist? Some other solution? Various ideas were discussed at length both on and off list and in a side group but we didn’t reach a final decision.
  2. APCgrabber.com: A website that pulls in data on APCs for easy comparison or where publishers can self-post pricing info (granted there would be lots of caveats). We also referred to this idea as pricechopperscience.com. Of course, this idea preceded the blacklist discussion---we wouldn’t want to create a tool that makes it easier for fraud dealers to peddle their wares.
  3. Open impacts: Follow-up on conversation regarding hotly-disputed CPIP report on open impacts, this time looping in one of the report’s authors.
  1. iTunes model: Maybe survey students, researchers, publishers, etc. for potential interest? Or has this idea been dismissed?
  1. Predatory publishing: What do we know about the dimensions of this issue? We have spoken about blacklists, APCs and cash incentives; more broadly, the entire issue of predatory publishing deserves a deeper look. We’ve heard about the fraud, deception, and so on, but is there also “good†in this system insofar as giving scholars a way to publish more quickly and cheaply?

Rick Anderson

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Sep 8, 2017, 3:18:13 PM9/8/17
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I’ll say this one more time and then I promise I’ll stop.

Nobody calls a journal “predatory” because its APCs are low, or because it provides little or no peer review. Non-peer-reviewed journals have always existed, they have a legitimate place in the scholarly ecosystem, and no one (to my knowledge) has ever believed otherwise. 

A journal gets called “predatory” when it engages in predatory or deceptive practices. Failing to offer peer review is not a predatory or deceptive practice; however, falsely claiming to offer peer review (especially in return for an APC) is. So are falsely claiming to be indexed, falsely claiming to have a high impact factor, falsely claiming editorial board members, falsely claiming affiliation with a learned society, etc. These are the practices that lead a journal to be considered predatory. The fact that these practices often coincide with relatively low APCs does not mean that the journals in question are being punished for having low APCs and light moderation. A low-APC/low-moderation journal that does not claim to be something else will not be branded a “predator” by anyone I know. 

That’s the last thing I’ll say in response to this on-list.

---
Rick Anderson
Assoc. Dean for Collections & Scholarly Communication
Marriott Library, University of Utah
From: <osi20...@googlegroups.com> on behalf of David Wojick <dwo...@craigellachie.us>
Date: Friday, September 8, 2017 at 1:07 PM
To: "osi20...@googlegroups.com" <osi20...@googlegroups.com>

David Wojick

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Sep 8, 2017, 3:38:30 PM9/8/17
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No Rick.

If you read the stuff that has been posted lately, these journals are called "predatory" simply because they are on Beall's list. What these journals have in common is a set of features that are due to their low APC, which Shen and Bjork estimated to be about $100.

Beall's list has become the false, de facto definition of predatory. No one has carried out the study you seem to be claiming exists. Every study is based on Beall's list.

David


At 03:18 PM 9/8/2017, Rick Anderson wrote:
I’ll say this one more time and then I promise I’ll stop.

Nobody calls a journal “predatory†because its APCs are low, or because it provides little or no peer review. Non-peer-reviewed journals have always existed, they have a legitimate place in the scholarly ecosystem, and no one (to my knowledge) has ever believed otherwise.

A journal gets called “predatory†when it engages in predatory or deceptive practices. Failing to offer peer review is not a predatory or deceptive practice; however, falsely claiming to offer peer review (especially in return for an APC) is. So are falsely claiming to be indexed, falsely claiming to have a high impact factor, falsely claiming editorial board members, falsely claiming affiliation with a learned society, etc. These are the practices that lead a journal to be considered predatory. The fact that these practices often coincide with relatively low APCs does not mean that the journals in question are being punished for having low APCs and light moderation. A low-APC/low-moderation journal that does not claim to be something else will not be branded a “predator†by anyone I know.

That’s the last thing I’ll say in response to this on-list.


---
Rick Anderson
Assoc. Dean for Collections & Scholarly Communication
Marriott Library, University of Utah
Desk: (801) 587-9989
Cell: (801) 721-1687
rick.a...@utah.edu

From: < osi20...@googlegroups.com> on behalf of David Wojick <dwo...@craigellachie.us >
Date: Friday, September 8, 2017 at 1:07 PM
To: " osi20...@googlegroups.com" < osi20...@googlegroups.com>
Subject: RE: Traditional versus new wave journals?

Okay, Glenn.

However I cannot agree with this apparently blanket use of the term "predatory." By accident I seem to have become OSI's representative for the new wave of over 1000 low cost OA publishers and 10,000 journals. Not that I know any of them; I just study them, but I guess diversity starts small like that. That they are as a group predatory in any reasonable use of that term is questionable, to say the least. Perhaps you can find a more neutral term, or create a different topic description so as to separate the new wave issues from the predatory ones.

David

At 12:04 PM 9/8/2017, Glenn Hampson wrote:
Hi David,
 
I'm going to request that we move this conversation to our list of research projects. We've pretty much exhausted this topic here (and exhausted people as well!). The key components of this study might look like this---let me know how this looks to you:
How rapidly is the current scholcomm publishing system changing?
What forces are driving this change (and where are they more significant, and why)?
What kinds of changes are happening (and where)?
What are the pros and cons of these changes (both hypothetical and actual/measured)?
What should be the response of the scholcomm community to these changes (e.g., enforce international standards for peer review)?
 
Where we̢۪re at now with th this conversation is that you̢۪re enthusiastic and nd everyone else is terrified, so we need to get on the same page before moving forward. So adding this to our list, here̢۪s what we have now:
 
Cash incentives to publish: No group yet. Any interest?
Publisher profit margins: A group of industry leaders and analysts might be willing to pull together an authoritative report on the profit margins of commercial publishers but we haven’t ¢t started these conversations yet.
Open protocols: No group discussion or work yet. Several folks stepped forward with interest, however.
Blacklist: Should a new blacklist be developed? A whitelist? Some other solution? Various ideas were discussed at length both on and off list and in a side group but we didn̢۪t reach a final decision.
APCgrabber.com: A website that pulls in data on APCs for easy comparison or where publishers can self-post pricing info (granted there would be lots of caveats). We also referred to this idea as pricechopperscience.com. Of course, this idea preceded the blacklist discussion---we wouldn̢۪t want to create a tool that mt makes it easier for fraud dealers to peddle their wares.
Open impacts: Follow-up on conversation regarding hotly-disputed CPIP report on open impacts, this time looping in one of the report̢۪s authorhors.
iTunes model: Maybe survey students, researchers, publishers, etc. for potential interest? Or has this idea been dismissed?
Predatory publishing: What do we know about the dimensions of this issue? We have spoken about blacklists, APCs and cash incentives; more broadly, the entire issue of predatory publishing deserves a deeper look. We’ve¢ve heard about the fraud, deception, and so on, but is there also “good†in this system insofar as giviniving scholars a way to publish more quickly and cheaply?

Glenn Hampson

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Sep 8, 2017, 3:50:10 PM9/8/17
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Thanks Rick,

 

I think you’ve provided a good stopping point. If anyone wants to be part of this conversation in the new forum to be set up for it, let me know. This group will develop something and then kick it back to the full group for consideration. We have a lot of different perspectives to roll up----not a lot of facts, though, so if anyone has links to surveys, data, etc., send these as well and I’ll add them to the resources list for this group. I agree, David, that this shouldn’t be a study just of predatory (or liar liar pants on fire) journals but of the “new wave” journals as well and that the two shouldn’t be confused.

 

Best,

 

Glenn

Abel L. Packer

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Sep 8, 2017, 4:05:50 PM9/8/17
to David Wojick, osi2016-25-googlegroups.com

Dear Glenn

I agree that the predatory issue should be analysed through out the publishing information flow.

For Latin American and particularly for SciELO journals a major predatory issue related to the inclusive advancing of scholarly communication (journals) is the erratic indexing policies in particular those originating from the dispute between WoS and Scopus. 

So, the 8. Predatory Publishing you listed is becoming a major issue.

Another way to look to predatory journals is to project the scholarly communication flow starting always the manuscript in a preprint server. From preprint servers it would be possible to have a more in depth understanding of the entire scientific output. So, preprint could be another key issue.

Best, Abel 


 



 

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Glenn Hampson

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Sep 8, 2017, 4:46:23 PM9/8/17
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Thanks Abel---noted. I was saying to Rick that we have enough projects on this list for eight PhD theses. If anyone would like to help fund some of this work, let me know!

 

Best,

 

Glenn

 

From: osi20...@googlegroups.com [mailto:osi20...@googlegroups.com] On Behalf Of Abel L. Packer
Sent: Friday, September 8, 2017 1:06 PM
To: David Wojick <dwo...@craigellachie.us>

Cc: osi2016-25-googlegroups.com <osi20...@googlegroups.com>
Subject: Re: Traditional versus new wave journals?

 

 

Dear Glenn

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Plutchak, T Scott

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Sep 8, 2017, 5:42:54 PM9/8/17
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David,

 

A couple of quick questions in an attempt to nudge this along just a bit. 

 

  • In theory, does Rick’s characterization of the features that would qualify calling a journal “predatory” seem accurate to you – i.e., a journal that claims to have certain key attributes that it does not in fact have?
  • If so, do you agree that there is some subset of the “new wave of over 1000 low cost OA publishers and 10,000 journals” that could be characterized as such?  (As you say, that study hasn’t been done, so we don’t know what the percentage might be, although anecdotal evidence indicates it is larger than zero.)

 

I take it that your working hypothesis is that there is a significant number of those 10,000 journals that do NOT meet that characterization and you are much more interested in studying them since you suspect that they represent an overall positive development by publishing research results that would be unlikely to get published in subscription journals or in the OA journals that have much higher APCs and workflows that emulate the traditional subscription journals.

 

The corollary to this would be that you feel that a focus on “predatory,” which appears to be applied to all of these low cost journals, regardless of what their actual operations might be, muddies the waters, and impedes the kind of examination of the potential positive impacts of these low cost journals that you believe is warranted.

 

Scott

 

 

T Scott Plutchak | Director of Digital Data Curation Strategies

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From: <osi20...@googlegroups.com> on behalf of David Wojick <dwo...@craigellachie.us>
Date: Friday, September 8, 2017 at 2:38 PM
To: "osi20...@googlegroups.com" <osi20...@googlegroups.com>
Subject: Re: Traditional versus new wave journals?

 

No Rick.

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David Wojick

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Sep 9, 2017, 11:32:54 AM9/9/17
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You are on the right track, Scott. I think the numbers are telling. The Beall's list journals are approaching the traditional ones in both number and volume. That this is some sort of colossal deception is simply not credible and a far more rational explanation is becoming clear. There is an exploding market for cheap, fast and lightly moderated publication.

But as for the various criteria, I think most are either superficial or irrelevant. The only practice that would be truly predatory is to take the APC and not publish the article and we do not see that, quite the contrary. Beall himself early on complained about these being what he called publishers of last resort, which is the very opposite of predatory. As it turns out they are now often the publishers of first resort in the markets they serve.

The supposed criteria are indeed not being met. How much for each is an interesting question, but very expensive to answer and I doubt it matters much. This publishing revolution has a life of its own and I doubt it can be turned back or changed much. (Revolutions like this are my field.) In any case it is important to understand it first. That is my interest.

David
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