Re: Savings from Converting to On-Line-Only: 30%- or 70%+ ?

From: Stevan Harnad <>
Date: Fri, 25 Sep 1998 21:36:57 +0100

On Fri, 25 Sep 1998, Keith Seitter wrote:

> One thing we deal with in the American Meteorological Society Journals is
> that scientists from some countries are prohibited from paying page charges
> with government research funds...
> Given this situation, we have always felt that it would be best if we could
> decrease our dependence on page charges to cover our publication costs. I
> find it interesting that in all the discussion that has taken place here so
> far on using page charges as the primary means of covering costs, no one
> has pointed out that there is a large number of scientists who would be
> prohibited by their national regulations from paying in this way.

(1) You are speaking of page charges for toll-gated publication in
paper, not for free online-only publication. supported by S/SL/PPV. It
is no wonder at all that there should be reluctance to doubly subsidise
paper publication, already supported as it is by S/SL/PPV revenue. That
would be to add insult to injury!

(2) Current page charge legislation and practises are based on that
state of affairs, and fully justified. Once the benefit becomes free
online access for all -- weighed against the current costs of paper
access supported by S/SL/PPV -- the arithmetic will take care of the
rest, as especially in countries with foreign exchange problems and
impoversihed library serial holdings. Rules and habits are there to be
reconsidered and changed in the face of changing incentives.

I don't count the well-deserved ill-reputation of page charges in the
Guenberg Era as an accelerant towards the optimal and the inevitable,
but I don't think it will be as great a retardant as others do (or

Stevan Harnad
Received on Tue Aug 25 1998 - 19:17:43 BST

This archive was generated by hypermail 2.3.0 : Fri Dec 10 2010 - 19:45:28 GMT