Randy Schekman Responds to His Critics

For those who don’t know who Schekman is, use the search feature, for those of you who are somewhat familiar with Schekman, here’s a link to his response to the feedback he has gotten so far: [Ars Technica coverage][at] — which appears to be taken from _The Conversation_.

For those who don’t want to RTFA, the four points below seem to be central to his program:

1. Academics who serve a role in research assessment could shun all use of journal names and impact factors as a surrogate measure of quality. New practices and processes must be devised and shared so that we can rapidly move forward. My Berkeley colleague Michael Eisen has added an important point: we must speak up in appointment and funding committees when we hear others use journal names this way. Here we need peer pressure as much as we need peer review.
2. Researchers applying for positions, funding, and tenure should avoid any mention of impact factors in their applications or CVs. Article metrics might have a role to play, but narrative explanations of research significance and accomplishments would be more helpful.
3. Funders, universities, and other institutions should make it clear to their review committees that journal brand cannot be used as a proxy for scientific quality. If reviewers object, they should find different reviewers.
4. Many of us serve as editors or editorial board members of journals—and we could insist that the publishers of these journals stop promoting impact factors. Instead, the journals could emphasise the other valuable services they provide to authors and readers to promote their worth to the community.

[at]: http://arstechnica.com/science/2013/12/nobel-laureate-break-free-from-the-stifling-grip-of-luxury-journals/

The Copyright Valley

> Even though I walk through the valley of the shadow of death, I fear no evil. (Psalm 23:4)

Some are calling it “the copyright hole”, but I think the copyright valley describes the graph’s appearance, especially when you mash it up with Psalm 23 (above):

The graph, based on recent research using Amazon's database, reveals the drop in sales of texts published between the years 1910 and 1990.

The Copyright Valley

_The Atlantic_ has [the report][], with a link to [the study][].

[the report]: http://www.theatlantic.com/technology/archive/2013/07/the-hole-in-our-collective-memory-how-copyright-made-mid-century-books-vanish/278209/
[the study]: http://papers.ssrn.com/sol3/papers.cfm?abstract_id=2290181

More on University Presses

Jennifer Howard of the CHE attended the annual meeting of the American Association of University Presses and [reported][] on some of the more provocative things being said and discussed at the meeting. Apparently there was a lot of talk around some points made by Ian Bogost — check out the links in the article for more — but I was mostly struck by the fact that I’ve heard many similar things by smart publishers already. I’ll even go so far as to say that I think someone like Craig Gill at University Press of Mississippi is already trying to think about much of what’s mentioned in Howard’s report. I have no idea if he was at the meeting, but I hope the two eventually compare notes. (Note to Howard: I bet I’m not alone in wanting more dispatches from the meeting.)

[reported]: http://chronicle.com/blogs/wiredcampus/big-ideas-and-a-microrant-for-university-presses/44585

Edwin Mellen Press Doesn’t Like It When You Call Them a Vanity Press

Inside Higher Ed has [coverage][] of Edwin Mellen Press filing suit against an academic librarian for a blog post from two years ago. One wonders if the good folks at Mellen Press have heard of the [Streisand effect][]?

[coverage]: http://www.insidehighered.com/news/2013/02/08/academic-press-sues-librarian-raising-issues-academic-freedom
[Streisand effect]: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Streisand_effect

Microtome

Speaking of publishing, [Microtome Publishing](http://mtome.com/) bills itself as “publishing services in support of open access to the scholarly literature.” From the about page:

> Microtome Publishing was founded in 2002 by Stuart M. Shieber on the premise that scholarly publishing should have different goals from traditional publishing; works that have been written without consideration for monetary gain by the authors should be disseminated to the greatest number for the lowest cost to the greater good of all. To that end, Microtome publishes monographs using nonstandard distribution methods such as making its books available at no cost in digital form. Microtome publishes print versions of open access journals to provide for efficient and cost-effective archiving of freely available journal materials.

Free and Open Source Journal Management Software

A list of free and open-source journal management software from the [Open Access Directory](http://oad.simmons.edu/oadwiki/Free_and_open-source_journal_management_software).

* Ambra. Formerly part of Topaz (below), but forked.
* CLEO Various tools related to revues.org and Lodel (see Lodel below) can be found in this site. In French.
* DiVA. From the the Electronic Publishing Centre at Uppsala University Library.
* DPubS. From Cornell University Library and Pennsylvania State University Libraries and Press.
* E-Journal. From Drupal.
* ePublishing Toolkit. From the Max Planck Gesellschaft.
* GAPworks. From German Academic Publishers (GAP).
* HyperJournal. From the University of Pisa.
* Lodel is the publishing software behind Revues.org.
* OpenACS
* Open Journal Systems. From the Public Knowledge Project.
* SOPS. From SciX.
* Topaz. From the Public Library of Science. Also see Ambra, above.

The Scholarly Publishing and Academic Resources Coalition also maintains a list of [Journal Management Systems](http://www.arl.org/sparc/publisher/journal_management.shtml).