Alex Holcombe
Creating a two-tier academic system of rich and poor: Now, money fast-tracks journal submissions!
_Obesity Reviews_ has a “Fast Track Facility”: A submission fee of $1,000 or £750 for articles up to 9000 words long, or $1500 for articles more than 9,000 words long guarantees peer-review within 10 working days - Alex Holcombe
I suppose this was inevitable. - Bill Hooker
Maybe it's inevitable, but we should protest somehow, in case it's not inevitable :) - Alex Holcombe
Wow. That's really shady. - kendrak
Money for fast peer review? When will there be money for no peer-review? - Björn Brembs
well, this sounds like a wake-up call to me... any suggestion as to where and how to protest? - Claudia Koltzenburg
Soon, very soon...which is exactly the wrong way to be going... - Cameron Neylon
commoditization might be a key term to search (Suber 2009), commoditization was apparently also talked about at OASPA conference in Prague August 2010 - Claudia Koltzenburg
we might ask journals with a very short submission<->acceptance period... - Claudia Koltzenburg
I think reviewers must be getting a cut so that they will evaluate the paper quickly. When money is involved, they will tend to accept some borderline cases which they would reject otherwise. They want to be "cooperative" so they will get more manuscripts (=money). Some may even make a career out of this. - mkoz
MKaan - where do I sign up? Depending on the money involved, I can make my review shorter and quicker than anyone! - Mr. Gunn
Coming soon to a journal near you, Mr. Gunn :) - mkoz
Here's another one, requesting a $200 processing charge. - mkoz
And another. Wow. I'm afraid of digging further. - mkoz
Thanks MKaan et al., looks like these 3 journals are different publishers so it is not just an isolated case. I suppose we should start by writing a letter protesting to the journals and their publishers. The fee (and the associated compromise in standards that will sometimes occur to get the action letter done by the deadline) violates an ethic of scientific fairness. Has anyone codified fair practices by journals? We need a code to shame violators, and reduce their prestige - Alex Holcombe
I've started an open protest letter on Google Doc, I would love any help to write it, also lemme know if you're likely willing to sign on: - Alex Holcombe
I've made some contributions to the letter. I'll certainly consider signing it (being cagey only because I don't know where other folks will want to go with this). - Bill Hooker
thank you, signed as the Managing editor of an OA journal that is a Western/Russian cooperation - Claudia Koltzenburg
Thanks. I've signed it, too. - mkoz
anything came from this, @Alex Holcombe? - Claudia Koltzenburg
Lars Hvild alerted me to the existence of the International Committe of Medical Journal Editors ( which sets some norms for journal behavior. Anyone have any contacts there? Otherwise I'll simply cold-email them, although that hasn't worked yet for a few other places I tried. Of course we should also send our letter in to those journals at some point. Any other ideas? You might also be interested in one journal editor's defense in the comments on my blog: - Alex Holcombe
@Alex re ICMJE, if you like I am a representative of a medical journal so, yes, we 'belong', so you and me (CTT) could team up if you think that might be helpful in this regard, good idea @Lars Hvild - Claudia Koltzenburg
@Claudia that's great! BTW we only have 6 signatories at the moment so anyone reading, please consider signing on: @Claudia I haven't found your email, mine is I'll draft an email to ICMJE for us - Alex Holcombe
info at - Claudia Koltzenburg
I wonder if some of that money is going to pay peer reviewers to comment within a certain number of days? - Joe
Alex, I doubt many people are going to read this far down the comments on this thread. I'd try posting a new item to your feed and the Science 2.0 room just saying "we think the letter is ready to go, please consider signing". I think that's a reasonable thing to do, and not spammy. - Bill Hooker