Thursday, September 6, 2012

I don't know about you, but to me it sounds like a ripoff

Have you ever stopped and pondered about why ink cartridges are so expensive?
The market explanation is that is with the cartridges that the companies get their profit, they are probably losing money with each printer they sell.

So now begs the question, why are Journals so expensive? 

Have you tried  downloading a paper from things like Elsevier and the IEEE without being connected to a network that has a license for any of them?

The standard price of your paper will be about  $30(USD). Which again begs the question? Is it really that expensive to publish your paper?

Recently the IEEE solved my question, by telling me that I (and only I) have the possibility of making my paper free for the world by paying a unique fee of $3000 USD!!

Of course, your contract with the IEEE says that the exact camera-ready paper that you submitted is the one that they can make open access. If you change a single paragraph, you can actually upload it to your favorite server for null or almost null fees.

The IEEE says that price, the $3000,  is to cover the publishing costs. So they have answered my question, the publishing costs are 3000 USD, because they wouldn't think on using my money to get a profit right?

So, what if I want to publish my own journal, the IEEE just told me that the price for each paper is $3000 USD, so publishing a single Volume with 15 papers should have a cost of 45,000 USD right?????

A single volume, would be equivalent to about a book of 120 pages, if each paper is 15 pages (because they publish on both sides)

So, there we have it, it costs $45,000 USD to publish a full Edition of a volume. Now, I do not know how many copies do they release per Volume, but lets do an estimate.

The market price of publishing your own book is about $5 USD (150 color pages) for a paperback,so 45,000 USD get you 9000 printed volumes.

And then we ask, do they publish 9000 volumes? Perhaps they do, I don't really know, and it's a number they don't seem to publish or make public. If each University receives printed copies of the Journals, they might well be over the 9000 printed volumes and their numbers would make sense. But on the other hand, if only the authors receive this copies, it's just a huge ripoff. Since I hardly think that the hosting costs of the papers are over (45,000 x 6 volumes per year) $270,000 USD.