Re: Scientific publishing is not just about administering peer-review

From: Albert Henderson <chessNIC_at_COMPUSERVE.COM>
Date: Thu, 16 Oct 2003 07:19:23 -0400

on Thu, 16 Oct 2003 Fytton Rowland <J.F.Rowland_at_LBORO.AC.UK> wrote:
> I haven't reposted Etienne's post ans Stevan's answers, but I'd just like
> to say that I think we are getting to the heart of the matter now. If we
> mostly agree that peer review (including within that term the activities of
> the academic editor, the editorial board, and the referees of a journal)
> must remain, and that the administration of peer review has a cost, the
> remaining activity of professional, paid editors is copy-editing. Is copy-
> editing necessary?
> I think it is useful to have focussed in on this as a key issue within the
> question of "the cost of the essentials".

        Copy editing is an important function for some
        journals and not for others.

        The essential element missing from the discussion
        is that of delivery. Journals deliver content
        to subscribers/readers on a regular basis. They
        may also put research into context with editorials,
        letters, comments, notices of meetings, abstracts,
        reviews, and so on. There is a cost of maintaining
        subscriber lists.

        In contrast, the various free open access schemes
        leave readers entirely on their own. No service,
        no cost.

        The major cost of the journal system, documented by
        Donald King et al., is not the cost of producing
        journals. It is the cost of finding and reading
        information. The major information challenge of
        science for over a century has been the abundance
        of public reports of discovery. It has been the job
        of the journals to organize, present, and deliver
        according to special interests of readers.

        Best wishes,

Albert Henderson
Pres., Chess Combination Inc.
POB 2423 Bridgeport CT 06608-0423

Received on Thu Oct 16 2003 - 12:19:23 BST

This archive was generated by hypermail 2.3.0 : Fri Dec 10 2010 - 19:47:05 GMT