Thursday, February 9, 2012

Protests Against Journal Publisher

Following the lead of British professor Tim Gower, a growing number of professors, librarians, researchers, and like-minded professionals are refusing to publish in, referee for, or join the editorial board for academic journal publishing giant Elsevier.

Supporters of the protest cite the incredibly high journal subscription prices as a main reason for their disassociation with Elsevier. Thomas Hales, a math professor at the University of Pittsburgh, stated his frustration plainly, asking "Why should university researchers donate their labor and intellectual property to Elsevier, just to have the publisher turn around and charge university libraries exorbitant prices for access?" (

The price of scholarly journals has long been an issue, especially with university and library budgets being so tight. Open access, which allows unrestricted online access to scholarly journals for little or no cost, is gaining momentum as a viable solution. Time will tell whether this Elsevier protest will be a step toward bigger changes in the journal publishing market.

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