Two interesting developments from the two most influential scholarly societies for chemical researchers, the American Chemical Society (ACS) and its British counterpart, the Royal Society of Chemistry (RSC).
The RSC announced yesterday that one of its newest publications, Chemical Science (launched in 2010), will move to what’s known as ‘gold’ open access – a fully open journal, free for readers without a subscription. With the publication of the first issue in 2015, all content published from that issue forward will be freely available. In addition, for two years, the RSC will waive all Article Processing Charges (APCs), so publishing in Chemical Science will be free for authors too.
Alert viewers will recall that, several months ago, the ACS announced several major open access initiatives (‘ACS Announces Moves to Expand Open Access,’ November 7, 2013) including the launch of a new, fully open ‘gold’ OA journal, to be called ACS Central Science.
Though ACS has not opted to waive APC charges, it has created a system of credits for authors publishing in ACS journals that can translate into OA publication in ACS Central Science or any other ACS journal (the corresponding RSC program is called “Gold for Gold” – a voucher system offering vouchers to RSC authors who (and here’s the kicker) are affiliated with institutions subscribing to the premium, aptly-named “Gold,” subscription package (also known as a ‘big deal’ – a bundle of journal subscriptions for a package price that (it turns out) is highly variable among institutions – ‘On the Cost of Journal Bundles,’ June 17, 2014).
Two models, both free of subscription barriers to readers, with somewhat different funding mechanisms and administrative back-ends, and clearly an unspoken (but unmistakeable) scramble to claim the title “first in chemistry open access publishing.” Not a bad place to be!
BTW Dartmouth authors should recall that COPE funding is available to pay author fees for publication in ANY gold (fully open access) journal.