by Lucy Barnes and Rupert Gatti
On 16 May 2019, Knowledge Unlatched announced the beta launch of a new hosting platform for Open Access books, the Open Research Library (ORL). Our books are a prominent part of this nascent project, both on the website and in the marketing associated with the launch, and this, together with Knowledge Unlatched’s claim that they are ‘working with publishers and libraries worldwide’, might give the impression that we are actively participating in and endorsing the platform. However this is not the case: we were not informed or consulted about this project at any stage; we were not told that our books would feature on this platform; and we do not support ORL. In fact we have grave concerns about its approach and business model, and those of Knowledge Unlatched (KU), which we will set out here.
OBP has participated in the data-gathering exercise that is currently being carried out by Fullstopp Gmbh on behalf of the Universities UK Open Access Monographs working group. The questionnaire, which is available online, has been designed to collect information that will inform future OA policy decisions, and in the spirit of openness we share our responses in full below. We also share the data we provided to Fullstopp, which comprises sales data for all the print editions of our books published before the end of 2017. We also have sales information for our digital editions and readership statistics for all our titles that we are happy to make available if requested.
We are always happy to share information and data about our work – we put as much of it as we can on our website, but if you’d like to know more, please get in touch! Continue reading
We have recently contributed to two other blogs to talk about ScholarLed, the new OA consortium we have joined; and about the importance of Open Access publishing and what it can offer to authors. Catch up with those posts here!
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This blog post is part of a series for academics who want to find out more about Open Access. Click here for the other posts.
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In the past, Open Access publishing has been accused of being akin to vanity publishing or self-publishing, while the term ‘predatory publishing’ describes a phenomenon in which a publisher charges expensive fees for guaranteed publication while failing to provide peer review or even basic editing.
Reputable Open Access publishers clearly advertise their quality-control systems. For example at OBP we emphasise our rigorous peer-review system, as well as the high standard of our editing and production work – and this is evident in our publications, which are easy to check precisely because they are Open Access. Meanwhile the well-established publishers who produce Open Access work, such as Cambridge University Press, do not throw their quality control out of the window when they publish books or articles on an Open Access basis. Continue reading
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When you create original work, you possess the copyright. When you wish to publish that work, some publishers might ask you to sign the copyright over to them as a condition of publication, so that they can disseminate the work exclusively and therefore maximise its profitability. However, you do not have to agree to this – you can ask to retain copyright, or to transfer only a limited number of your rights to the publisher.
Pay attention to the contract the publisher is asking you to sign, make sure you understand it, and negotiate if you are unhappy with any of the terms. Be aware that signing away exclusive rights to the publisher might mean that you are not able to republish the work yourself in future, if for example you wish to republish a journal article as a chapter in a book. Continue reading
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There’s a lot of jargon surrounding Open Access publication, and as with all jargon it can confuse and obfuscate. Here is a simple glossary: Continue reading
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This is one of the most important questions for authors: if the reader doesn’t pay, who does? BPCs (Book Processing Charges) and APCs (Article Processing Charges) are fees levied on authors, their institutions or their funding bodies to pay for Open Access publishing (also known as author-side fees). Continue reading
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There are many academic publishers who publish Open Access work, including some of the most well-known such as Cambridge University Press, Harvard University Press, Oxford University Press, The MIT Press, Palgrave Macmillan, Springer, Elsevier, and so on.
There are also publishers whose entire publishing output is made available on an Open Access basis, such as ourselves, Open Humanities Press, UCL Press, punctum books, and many more. Continue reading
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For Open Access Week 2018, we’ve put together a series of blog posts that cover the basics of Open Access for academic researchers. We hope they give you the tools to navigate this vital subject with confidence.