Controversial Topics

This category contains 834 posts

Thinking about Internet Scale

The Internet operates on a scale unlike anything we have seen before. How must publishing adapt to this scale? This requires more than thinking of the Internet as another format. The scale of the Internet requires us to invite machines into our research and publishing activity. Continue reading

Advocacy, Analysis, and the Vital Importance of Discriminating Between Them

As the scholarly communication world becomes more complex and the issues we deal with become more politically and emotionally fraught, it becomes increasingly essential that we be able to tell the difference between anlaysis and advocacy. What markers can we look for to help us discriminate between them? Continue reading

When Do Citations Reflect “Impact?”

Citation practices vary between and within STM and HSS; they also vary by discipline and within disciplines. Though citation metrics presume evidence of “impact,” in fact a citation may represent a range of intentions. Given the emphasis on citation indices, isn’t it important to query what scholars are actually doing when they cite another scholar’s work? Continue reading

Scholarly Kitchen Podcast: Talking Publication Ethics

A conversation with COPE’s Charlotte Haug. Continue reading

The Gatekeeper  Strategy in the Library Market

EBSCO is now, through the acquisition of YBP, the largest vendor to academic libraries of both serials and books. This is the beginning of a gatekeeper strategy, which will put EBSCO in a position to mediate a large proportion of the arrangements between publishers and libraries. Continue reading

How Does the University Press Remain Relevant?

The university press world is ruminating on its relevance in a broader community that does not always show strong report for press activity. Different presses have identified a number of approaches to the problem of increasing relevance. Continue reading

The Mixed Marriage of For-profit and Not-for-profit Publishing

Scholarly publishing is virtually unique in that it has significant representation by both for-profit and not-for-profit publishers. This alters the very nature of this segment of publishing, making the not-for-profits more business-like and forcing the for-profits to behave at times like mission-based organizations. Continue reading

Connecting to End-Users

Digital media enables us to collect a huge amount of end-user data, far more than we could gather for print publishing. This presentation summarizes the way that data can be used to foster growth and concludes that end-user data is likely to require the creation of a new class of products. Continue reading

Can We Stop Talking about the “System” of Scholarly Communications, Please?

There are countless proposals for a new “system” for scholarly communications, but such plans are typically top-down and overlook all the creative initiatives by individuals working independently. Continue reading

Academia Versus Academia.edu: Should Tech Business Needs Trump Scholarly Culture?

Should the fast and loose rules of startup company business models and the spin-oriented language of advertising be given free rein in the scholarly community? Continue reading

Revisiting: On the Likelihood of Academia “Taking Back” Scholarly Publishing

Revisiting Rick Anderson’s 2013 post on what the options for the academy to take control of scholarly publishing, and whether any of those options seems feasible. Continue reading

Putting Publishers’ Views of Libraries into Context

A presentation delivered to the International Coalition of Library Consortia, the thesis of which is that libraries and consortia have adopted policies that inadvertently marginalize smaller publishers, to the advantage of the largest publishers. Continue reading

Should We Retire the Term “Predatory Publishing”?

Those who argue that “predatory” behavior is not only a problem among author-pays OA publishers have a good point. But this raises another question: is the term “predatory” itself really useful in the context of scholarly communication? Continue reading

Thumbs Down for the Freemium Model? Researchers Reject Nature’s Fast Track Peer Review Experiment

Nature conducts an experiment in paid fast track peer review, and the research community responds with concerns over creating an unfair tiered system for publication. Continue reading

The Half-life of Print

Popular discussion of the enduring popularity of print often obfuscate the business issues of managing a company that is transitioning from print to digital. Continue reading

Ask The Chefs: What is Editorial Independence and How Does It Impact Publishing?

On the surface editorial independence seems so straight-forward. However, it is filled with nuance. If publishing and editorial expectations are not clearly set, misunderstandings can cause angst, poor working relationships, and even legal action. Continue reading

Emerging from the STM Meeting: 2015 Top Tech Trends

Each sector of the information community is aware of the likelihood that their role in the scholarly ecosystem will change over the next three to five years. Each sector’s perspective is just a bit different. Content providers in the STM world see the future unfolding this way. Continue reading

Article Versioning: The End of The World v 2.0

After conducting further research, a January 2015 Scholarly Kitchen post is versioned. Continue reading

Version Control; or, What does it Mean to “Publish?”

The Oxford English Dictionary’s overarching definition of the transitive verb “publish” is “to make public.” An early use, dating to 1382 is “to prepare and issue copies of (a book, newspaper, piece of music, etc.).” This is probably how most publishers think of the term: public distribution of a text. In usage dating from 1573, … Continue reading

The ROARMAP Open Access Registry: New and Greatly Improved

ROARMAP, a deeply flawed and often misleading international registry of open access “mandates,” has now been completely revamped–and the result is a much more informative and reliable resource. Continue reading

Side Dishes by Stewart Wills

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