Guest Post – A Study of Commenting on PLOS Articles

Despite the near consensus about the popularity (or lack thereof) of commenting on academic articles, there is surprisingly little publicly available data relating to commenting rates. To address this, a team of academics from the Universities of Sheffield and Loughborough have recently published research into article commenting on PLOS journals. Simon Wakeling, Stephen Pinfield and Peter Willett report here on their findings.

The Terrible Burden of a Prestigious Brand

While all publishers like to have a strong brand, some brands are so prestigious that they actually serve to paralyze the managements responsible for them, making it impossible to introduce innovations and to develop the business. Vast bureaucracies arrive whose purpose is not to develop the business but to protect the vaunted brand. This is a management problem, not a marketing one, but it can stymie a publisher from pursuing a progressive agenda.

Return of the Big Brands: How Legacy Publishers Will Coopt Open Access

Open access publishing has gone through a number of stages. Though different people will classify these stages in diverse ways, one way to view this is to say that since the initial period of advocacy for open access, commercial interests have entered this market and are now prepared to augment their positions by leveraging their elite brands, using them, as it were, to draw manuscripts for a family of cascading products.

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.