PbType survey of attitudes to working papers

From: Stevan Harnad <harnad_at_ecs.soton.ac.uk>
Date: Thu, 9 Mar 2006 19:05:33 -0500

Dear Phil, I will post the announcement of your survey on the AmSci
Forum, but I need to point out three ambiguities in it:
(1) Working Papers: preprints vs. postprints. You never define "working
papers". Do you mean unrefereed drafts (preprints) of papers that are to
be submitted to journals? Or do you mean the author's own draft of
refereed articles accepted for publication (postprints) (but not the
publisher's PDF)? The answers will differ depending on which the
respondent thinks you mean by "working paper": preprints, postprints, or

(2) Open Access vs Open Access Publication. Question 5 rightly defines
Open Access as "published material that is available to readers at no
cost" but Question 6 states "I support 'Open Access' as a model for
publishing". This is now ambiguous, as there is both OA publishing and
the OA self-archiving of material
published in non-OA journals. You should be asking about those two
separately, as someone might support one and not the other.

(3) Institutional vs. 3rd Party Repositories. Question 9 asks "Do you
post a full text copy of your research articles on your
personal/departmental website?" That's fine. But then Question 14 asks
"To the best of your knowledge do publishers in your area of
specialization allow you to place electronic copies of published
materials in 3rd party databases?" What does that mean?
A personal/departmental website is not 3rd party but a central website
like Arxiv or PubMed Central is. Hence the question is ambiguous. 

It would be good if you sort out these ambiguities. Apart from that the
survey seems fine.

Chrs, Stevan

On 9-Mar-06, at 6:31 PM, Philip Cadigan wrote:

      Dear Prof. Harnad,

My company is conducting market research on the attitudes of
working papers in relation to academic research habits.


I'm assuming you're the administrator for the American Scientist
Open Access Forum, please correct me if I'm in error. 

I'm wondering if it would be in keeping with the spirit/rules of
the American Scientist Open Access Forum to post to the listserv
asking interested parties to complete the survey.  While the survey
is market research for potential future products, we're very much
interested in sharing the results of the survey broadly.

If you have any questions about the survey, I would be happy to do
my best to answer them.

Philip Cadigan

. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 
Philip Cadigan
PbType LLC

Vox: 617-314-6508
Fax: 617-314-6586
Received on Fri Mar 10 2006 - 15:27:04 GMT

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