Commerce

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Economics, Silicon Valley, and Information Warfare — Is Accuracy Becoming a Luxury Item? Or a Casualty?

Information warfare is both tactical and strategic, with much of its success stemming from the weakened economics of the current information economy. Scholarly publishers have experienced this in many ways, from Google Scholar to predatory publishers to pre-print archives — all answers to the calls for “free information” and all revealing tactical and strategic vulnerabilities as accuracy and facts become luxury items in the information war. Continue reading

Turnarounds, Pivots, and Repositioning: A Presentation to the Charleston Conference 2016

A presentation to the Charleston Conference in November 2016 on managing turnarounds in the scholarly communications area. The panelists come from very different areas of the industry: a library publication, a university press, and a distribution company. Continue reading

How’s That “Abundance” Thing Working Out For You?

The age of information abundance may have fundamental flaws — barriers to entry that create false equivalence; dissemination tools that conflate fake information with responsible sources; self-reinforcing loops of conspiracy and paranoia; and social fragmentation that makes societal disruption more likely. What can be done? Here are a few ideas. Continue reading

Why Technology Will Not Get Cheaper

The long-desired hope that digital publishing will be cheaper gets more cold water, as infrastructure and personnel costs continue to rise, with no real end in sight. Continue reading

Revisiting: Why Publishers’ Brands Matter

Revisiting Joe Esposito’s 2010 post on the role publishers’ brands play in purchasing decisions. Continue reading

Managing the Cost Burden — Is the Pendulum Swinging Back to the Individual Market?

The pendulum for revenues swung from personal subscriptions to institutional subscriptions with the rise of digital options. With growth capped, a new mix of access options is likely to emerge. Continue reading

Revisiting: The Editorial Fallacy

Revisiting Joe Esposito’s 2010 post on the disruptive publishing environment, in which publishers cannot rely on a purely editorial strategy, as many of the issues now facing them are not editorial in nature. Continue reading

A Taxonomy of University Presses Today

University presses bring a diversity not only of costs, scale, and business models, but also of organizational capacity, incentives, and objectives. As efforts are mounted to transition monograph publishing to open access, it is vital that we recognize the richness and complexity of this community. Continue reading

Guest Post, Adam Hodgkin: Do Books Need More Aggregation or More Curation — Time to Uncircle the Wagons?

Guest post from Adam Hodgkin, looking at the differences between the academic books and journals markets, and how the aggregation strategies for journals may not work in the same manner for books. Continue reading

Can Highly Selective Journals Survive on APCs?

Are the APC levels set for high-end OA journals too low to be sustainable? Are there other ways that might help high-end OA journals pay their way? Continue reading

Love That Dirty Water — Are We Headed Toward a “Clean Science Act”?

With greater awareness of the foibles and failings of scientific publishing, weaker self-regulation systems, and a trend toward governmental regulation of funding, is external regulation of the scientific journals system now inevitable? Continue reading

Innovation, Growth and the Art of Balance

Robert Harington references our current altered state in politics as a tool to reflect on the need to invoke balance in publishing innovation, and growth. Continue reading

APCs and Competition: What Shulenberger Got Wrong

Would a systemwide “flip” to open access by means of universal article-processing charges work? David Shulenberger argues that it would not, and he may be right — but not for the reasons he gives. Continue reading

Book Review — The Traps of Big Data Revealed in “Weapons of Math Destruction” by Cathy O’Neil

The new book, “Weapons of Math Destruction,” calls out many worrying trends in the application of big data, with particularly salient entries on higher education rankings, for-profit universities, the justice system, insurance, and employment. Continue reading

How Much Does Publishing Cost?

There have been several recent studies of what it costs to publish academic monographs, but they all mistake the cost of production with the cost of publication. This post summarizes the issues and suggests a very simple way to calculate the cost of publication. Continue reading

Annual Reports — What Do They Actually Tell Us?

Annual reports from publishing organizations always have a marketing slant, even when they are required filings with governmental bodies. But some are more marketing-oriented than others, and should not be mistaken for transparency, but rather tend toward rationalization. eLife’s recent report, challenging others to be as transparent, is itself opaque and purposeful. Continue reading

A Quick Tour Around the World of Scholarly Journal Publishing

A presentation to the 2016 ISMTE US Conference. Something of a “state of our industry” overview, or perhaps, everything I needed to know I learned from the other bloggers at The Scholarly Kitchen. Continue reading

The Future(s) (plural) of Publishing

A presentation to the ISMTE conference. The argument is that strategy is an integral part of business operations and must be used to measure all activity within an organization. A three-step process for strategic planning is included. Continue reading

Curation Nation: Thoughts on the Future of Textbooks

Is there a role for a curated, remixing approach to developing next generation textbooks. Robert Harington investigates the role of curated open textbooks in teaching today’s students, looking at some of the available tools, the way in which instructors utilize such tools, and issues around fair use of content. Continue reading

Locks, Keys, and Firewalls — Why Internet Security Requires Digital, Analog . . . and Diligent Humans

Internet security seems to be crumbling before our eyes, and our media and leaders are not immune and lack a crucial understanding of how vulnerable a totally digital world can be. The answer may lie with analog technologies. Continue reading

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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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The Scholarly Kitchen is a moderated and independent blog. Opinions on The Scholarly Kitchen are those of the authors. They are not necessarily those held by the Society for Scholarly Publishing nor by their respective employers.