Peter Wiley the chairman of international scientific publishing giants Wiley declined to discuss the Partnership for Research Integrity in Science and Medicine (PRISM) anti-OA campaign today. Wiley, a former journalist and a published author, was at the Frankfurt Book Fair and celebrating the company's 200th anniversary.
With an extension of the hand Chairman Wiley handed the issue to Stephen Smith, Senior VP for Europe and International Development. "Our general view of OA is, it's another business model," said Smith.
Both men were keen to point out, rightly, that publishing is an expensive business and agreed that greater clarity about the role and importance of peer review and the publishing process would benefit the sector right now. Something critics have said PRISM is preventing.
Although PRISM hasn't named a single publisher belonging to its "coalition", Wiley seems to be one of them. According to Nature, Wiley was one of only three publishers in the room (with Elsevier and ACS) when Eric Dezenhall pitched the PR proposal now embodied in PRISM. Is Wiley dodging questions about PRISM simply to avoid controversy? Or is it distancing itself from PRISM, rough the way the AAP/PSP (which launched PRISM) did when it removed all mention of PRISM from its web site?
Peter Wiley is right when he points out that "OA fees [at fee-based OA journals] are going up." But that's not responsive to any of the criticism of PRISM. PRISM opposes government OA policies, which one and all focus on deposits in OA repositories, not submissions to OA journals. In any case, rising fees do not entail that "the new sector is unsustainable". If it did, then all of Wiley's journals, and all other TA journals, would be unsustainable as well. But in fact most OA journals charge no publication fees at all, and we can already point to examples of fee-based OA publishers making a profit (Hindawi) and no-fee OA publishers making a profit (MedKnow). If Wiley won't respond to questions about PRISM, I wonder whether he'd respond to the conclusion of the University of California Academic Senate that "The economics of [subscription-based] scholarly journal publishing are incontrovertibly unsustainable."
Peter Suber at 10/11/2007 10:31:00 AM.
The open access movement:
Putting peer-reviewed scientific and scholarly literature
on the internet. Making it available free of charge and
free of most copyright and licensing restrictions.
Removing the barriers to serious research.