Re: Excerpts from FOS Newsletter

From: Mark Doyle <doyle_at_APS.ORG>
Date: Tue, 26 Mar 2002 16:22:23 -0500


On Tuesday, March 26, 2002, at 03:07 PM, Peter Suber wrote:

> The International Consortium for the Advancement of Academic Publishing
> (ICAAP) has announced its prices for designing, managing, preparing and
> hosting electronic journals. After the initial setup fee, the price is
> $400/year, and $30/article for markup (Canadian dollars). Compare
> these prices, for example, to services charging $500/article. ICAAP
> believes its prices are low enough to create an alternative to
> expensive commercial presses and to allow editors to make their
> journals free or affordable for readers. ICAAP also announces that it
> now offers similar services for print journals.
> (Full disclosure: I'm on the ICAAP board, but ICAAP is a non-profit
> organization and I have no financial interest in it.)

Is there a copy of the ICAAP DTD? I would say the markup I saw in their
posted example
is a far cry from
what a normal XML-savvy publisher does these days. References are not
there is no math markup in the example (will they do full-fledged
names are marked up assuming western standards, etc. What is the assumed
input format (Word?)? While this might be workable for a sociology
I don't see this $30/article price working for a highly technical
journal. Do their
prices extend to being able to handle 10,000's of article per year?

When you scale up in number or in complexity the material you end up with
needing more and better skilled labor. So a blanket comparison of
vs. $500/article without further context is fairly vacuous.

That said, I do applaud the effort to create a true archival format
first that is
then used to create further deliverables. This is a critical element
that is often
missing in discussions about freeing the literature. Major publishers
take this
aspect very seriously and a wholesale replacement of the current system
to one
based on self- or institutional- or subject-based archiving without
tackling the
underlying technical issues related to long term archiving would be a
major mistake.

The most viable and cost-effective solution for solving this problem is
develop authoring tools that allow authors to directly create a truly
XML file. The later in the process you add markup, the more costly it
is, especially
with complex markup for math or chemistry. It would be nice if some of
the money
flowing into BOAI was directed towards this.

> [S.H.: What about the cost of implementing peer review?]

The archiving cost is just as, if not more, important than the peer
review cost and the
fact that is it usually missing from your discussions is a major
weakness. I don't
think the $30/article number is generalizable to all fields of scholarly

Received on Thu Mar 28 2002 - 18:49:48 GMT

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