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When I launched the Scholarly Kitchen in late February 2008, I had a few unstated goals. One was to create a hub of discussion and information exchange for people in the scholarly publishing and information industries. Another was to attract a set of great bloggers with different perspectives on what we are all aiming at. A third was to help the Society for Scholarly Publishing become synonymous with independent and excellent information and opinions. And, finally, selfishly, I wanted a place to think out loud.

Since launch, we’ve published 955 posts, published 6,100 comments, and had nearly 800,000 visits. Last month was our biggest month ever, with nearly 50,000 visits. However, February will eclipse that, which is all the more noteworthy because February is the shortest month of the year.

In short, we’re continuing to grow.

Now celebrating our third anniversary, the Scholarly Kitchen has exceeded all my expectations. Over the past three years, the Chefs and I have been able to:

  • Meet for the first time as a group, at last year’s SSP Annual Meeting in San Francisco
  • Present a slice of the Kitchen at the ALPSP meeting in not-quite-Cambridge last fall
  • Attract great new bloggers on a consistent basis, so much so that we’re unofficially “full” at the moment
  • Be cited in publications both large and small, of nearly all types
  • And, of course, be nominated for a Webby

But the best thing we’ve been able to do — and the thing I’m most proud of — is the create a blog where the comments outnumber the posts by a ratio of over 6:1. That means we’re not broadcasting as much as creating discussion and a place where others can further our initial thinking, whether here or elsewhere via linking.

Also, we’ve had the unwavering support of the SSP. That’s been terrific.

We’re currently planning ways to make the Kitchen even better, with a new hosting arrangement, a new design, and other new initiatives to bring certain topics into clearer focus. We also want to make some of the posts have longer half-lives — they’re really terrific, but because we publish so often, they can get pushed off too soon. More on this in the next few months.

So, thanks to all the Chefs, readers, and our friends at the SSP. Happy reading, and let’s keep the discussions going.

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Kent Anderson

Kent Anderson

Kent Anderson is the CEO of RedLink and RedLink Network, a past-President of SSP, and the founder of the Scholarly Kitchen. He has worked as Publisher at AAAS/Science, CEO/Publisher of JBJS, Inc., a publishing executive at the Massachusetts Medical Society, Publishing Director of the New England Journal of Medicine, and Director of Medical Journals at the American Academy of Pediatrics. Opinions on social media or blogs are his own.

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Discussion

2 Thoughts on "The Scholarly Kitchen Turns Three"

Kent and the Kitchen
Happy Birthday

A few months ago a LinkedIn contact turned me on to SK and I signed up. I regularly post news and links for our discussions in our large and ever growing international Group: “EBooks, EReaders, Digital Books and Digital Content Publishing”. Since the field evolves everyday, the success of our group is based on keeping folks up to date not just on gadgets, and tech and process, but also on the thought behind various aspects of the publishing industry.

As we became an open group recently, many of our discussions became archived. However–With SK (among other sources) I know I can depend on thoughtful review of the latest developments and issues, and always mention that readers should not just read the post, but follow the comments and links because they are also worth reading. Whenever I start to wonder if anyone really reads the posts, I’ll receive a comment from someone thankful for a certain post and a couple have been for SK, in the short time I have posted SK. You have lots of good things to say–but I do understand about the frequency of posts leaving some unread. I tend to read almost all of them, but limiting the frequency could create more of an appointment readership on the days they are released. I’ll read it either way.–BMM

I second Barbara’s congratulations and also her recommendation to read the comments, which are generally at a higher level of intelligence and usefulness than is often the case on blogs like this (just take a look at the comments on the online Chronicle of Higher Education, for example).

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