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Saturday, February 10, 2007

FreeCulture students talk to the AAP

William Walsh, Who listens to and their 'radical' agenda? The AAP/PSP, for starters, Issues in Scholarly Communication, February 9, 2007.  Excerpt:

This morning, the AAP was publicly obsessed with and that organization's "radical" agenda.

This afternoon, we learn that attendees of the AAP/PSP's annual conference listened to --and held a lively Q&A session with-- a member earlier in the week.

From a post today by Asheesh Laroia to the blog:

This past Monday, I had a chance a chance to give academic publishers a piece of my mind.

The Professional and Scholarly Publishing division of AAP held a pre-conference meeting that Monday to talk about the way technology, specifically "Web 2.0?, was affecting the way students consume and use academic content....It was a very active, interested group attending our panel, and I really appreciated that.

From Laroia's recollection of the Q&A session that followed:

Q. What you've described sounds great from a student perspective. But if you continue your academic career, won't you want to be published in the most well-known journals?

A. That's a great question. (laughter) Sure, I'll want to advance my CV and publish in where everyone important to me will read my work. In natural language processing in computer science, that probably means conference proceedings, most of which are available on the web for free anyway. Later on in my career, when I'm established, I'll have the ability to choose where I publish, and if open access to my work is important to me, I'll be able to make sure that happens. But as I pointed out with NLP work, access and prestige aren't necessarily at odds....

I enjoyed Laroia's post, and I'm glad that AAP/PSP members were apparently interested in what he had to say.

Comment.  I commend the AAP/PSP for inviting students to give their perspectives and I commend Laroia for a straight answer to a curve-ball question.  The questioner was assuming that all high-prestige journals are TA and always will be.  Laroia saw through that, which even many publishing scholars fail to do.  I'd only add that publishing in a high-prestige TA journal is almost always compatible with OA archiving.  About 70% of TA journals give blanket permission for OA archiving, eliminating any need to worry about trade-offs.