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The Role of the Academic Journal Publisher and Open Access Publishing Models

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Abstract

This article explores the role and value of the academic journal publisher as paradigms of Open Access gain momentum and challenge the standards of paid subscription models. To recover the costs of publication services (which include everything from printing copies to online hosting and protection of intellectual property rights), publishers have traditionally employed a model in which subscribing individuals or institutions pay for access to content. The two main versions of Open Access publishing currently at large—Gold (in which a funding body or person pays the publisher to make the content freely available) and Green (in which there are no payments made for publication and articles are archived in free public repositories)—pose a challenge to the user-pays models that have served as a foundation of the business since its inception. However, these changes do not portend an undermining of the importance or viability of the academic journal publisher.

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