Controversial Topics

This category contains 845 posts

Is it True that Most Open Access Journals Do Not Charge an APC? Sort of. It Depends.

We often hear that the majority of open access journals charge authors no fee for publication. Is that true? Well, it depends on how you count journals. Continue reading

Amazon and the Future of Work

Amazon was recently criticized harshly in an article in the New York Times. The piece raises the question of whether the hard-charging culture of the tech industry is what we want. Continue reading

Science Versus Religion, The God of the Gaps, Being “Less Wrong” and Two Favorite Neils (Gaiman and deGrasse Tyson)

Does religion impinge on scientific progress? And what about leprechauns? Neil Gaiman and Neil deGrasse Tyson discuss… Continue reading

Researchers Remain Unaware of Funding Agency Access Policies

A new survey highlights the lack of awareness among researchers for funding agency public access policies. Continue reading

Interstitial Publishing

Interstitial publishing, when paired with interstitial reading, is a new form of publishing that aims to take advantage of what previously was viewed as lost time in between primary events during the day. Interstitial publishing seeks ways to create new users by creating content expressly for those brief moments, which heretofore went unexploited for productive aims. Continue reading

Deceptive Publishing: Why We Need a Blacklist, and Some Suggestions on How to Do It Right

Predatory publishing is a big and complex problem; so is calling out and shaming deceptive publishers by means of blacklisting. Is that something we should even do, and can it be done fairly, constructively, and helpfully? Yes, and here are some suggestions how. Continue reading

What They Still Don’t Teach You at Harvard Business School

A recent article about the publishing industry confuses the various business segments and offers prescriptions that are largely irrelevant to the task of running a publishing enterprise. Continue reading

A Social World: Society Membership, Social and Economic Rewards and Human Behavior

How do shifts in cultural and economic views on social behavior affect the decision of a student, or researcher when deciding whether or not to join a relevant academic society? What social and economic forces are involved in an academic’s collaborative life, publishing life, and teaching life? Robert Harington delves into a fascinating report from the World Bank, entitled World Development Report 2015: Mind, Society and Behavior and its relevance for publishing and academia. Continue reading

Revisiting: Is Access to the Research Paper the Same Thing as Access to the Research “Results”?

Is access to the research paper really the same thing as access to the research results themselves? Are funding agencies creating a false equivalency by confusing the two? And does this confusion favor researchers in some fields over others? Revisiting a 2013 post to re-examine these questions. Continue reading

Defending Regional Excellence in Research or Why Beall is Wrong About SciELO

Last week, Jeffery Beall wrote a highly critical blog past of Brazilian publishing co-operative and citation index SciELO. The post generated significant backlash in the blogosphere and on Twitter. Important aspects of the discussion seemed to get drowned out in all the furor: the motivation for SciELO’s founding in the first place and the need to protect local excellence in scholarly research. Continue reading

Elephants and the Internet: Online Forgetting

Should kids be helped to delete evidence of indiscretion, or should they stop posting such evidence in the first place? Charlie Rapple considers the new iRights campaign Continue reading

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

Side Dishes by Stewart Wills

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The mission of the Society for Scholarly Publishing (SSP) is "[t]o advance scholarly publishing and communication, and the professional development of its members through education, collaboration, and networking." SSP established The Scholarly Kitchen blog in February 2008 to keep SSP members and interested parties aware of new developments in publishing.
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