New Springer OA Journals
June 28, 2010 Leave a comment
Interesting to see the launch by Springer of a new range of 12 OA journals. It seems they are leveraging their purchase of BioMed Central a couple of years ago to underpin their new journals with an experienced OA management and production system. This announcement shows that publishers do see a developing need for OA journals which they want to supply. Encouraging news and another step towards more OA, albeit that repositories offer a faster and cheaper route.
It is interesting to see the growth of true OA journals, rather than the rather mixed development of hybrids: see the recent quote from Jan Velterop on the AmSci list with a startling justification for not reducing subscription prices in line with hybrid OA income. If I am reading this right, here it is not enough for a like-for-like reduction of subscription in response to a growth of OA option income for a journal. Before the subscription price comes down, the OA cost also has to cover cancellations of subscriptions as well!
This argument sees the additional OA fees primarily as a fill-up for a falling circulation, rather than a sustainable model for the journal’s future and underscores why publishers have to have clear related reductions in subscription prices alongside hybrid charges, or the model of hybrid publication has to be seen by funders as a time-limited transition model, as it will simply be used as a true “double-charge” for articles and a prop for cancellations in the time of cut-backs in university financing.