Open Access News

News from the open access movement

Tuesday, November 18, 2008

Comparing publication lag at OA and TA journals

Peng Dong, Marie Loh, and Adrian Mondry, Publication lag in biomedical journals varies due to the periodical's publishing model, Scientometrics, November 2006.  Only the abstract and page one are free online, at least so far:

Abstract:   Research manuscripts face various time lags from initial submission to final publication in a scientific periodical. Three publishing models compete for the market. Professional publishing houses publish in print and/or online in a “reader-pays” model, or follow the open access model of “author-pays”, while a number of periodicals are bound to learned societies. The present study aims to compare the three business models of publishing, with regards to publication speed. 28 topically similar biomedical journals were compared. Open access journals have a publication lag comparable to journals published by traditional publishers. Manuscript submitted to and accepted in either of these two types of periodicals are available to the reader much faster than manuscripts published in journals with strong ties to specialized learned societies.


  • I won't comment on the overall argument, since I don't have access to the article.  But even the abstract shows that the authors presuppose that all OA journals charge publication fees when, in fact, most charge no fees at all.
  • Here are some comments from Charlie Mayor, who was able to read the piece:
    ...Though their method is marred by small sample sizes in the open access group, time from receipt to publication online compared well between traditional-publication and OA articles. Nature Publishing Group titles were selected as representative of the traditional model. However, I would have liked to have seen data for other titles - Nature publishes every week and is the biggest academic journal in the world.  It may not be entirely typical in its editing processes and timeliness.  Nature titles took on average 120 days from receipt to online publication. Open access titles from BioMed Central took on average 139 days....