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Issue 31 • January 2021

An important albeit rarely invoked maxim is that if someone offers you a 7-times multiple of revenue for your publishing company, you take the deal. The more salient question is, Why would Wiley pay $298 million for a $40 million journal publisher with no recurring revenues? In this issue we explore the Wiley-Hindawi deal, the Plan S Rights Retention Strategy, a takeover of a journal by “rogue editors,” the rise of newsletter services, and other topics.

Avoidance of Doubt

Issue 30 • December 2020

The Plan S Rights Retention Strategy (RRS) has raised concerns among publishers, including many notable open access publishers. Elsevier follows Nature’s lead in announcing APC pricing for its flagship Cell portfolio (hint: not cheap). Ithaka S+R releases an extensive survey of library directors. eLife announces it will only review preprints.


Issue 29 • November 2020

Springer Nature’s extensive efforts to cooperate with open access (OA) mandates, including their new Nature Gold OA program (and its accompanyin $12,000 APC). cOAlition S’s inadequate Journal Checker Tool. The growth in the scientific literature during the pandemic, an AI tool for summarizing research papers, and more.

A World Elsewhere

Issue 28 • October 2020

PLOS announces Community Action Publishing (CAP) and seeks to move two highly selective Gold open access (OA) journals. Springer Nature cancels its IPO, but intends to offer Plan S across its entire journal portfolio. Wiley launches Natural Sciences, a broad-scope journal for authors affiliated with Projekt DEAL.

Lion Tamer?

Issue 27 • September 30, 2020

The Springer Nature and ResearchGate pilot project on making proprietary content openly accessible is a success. Open access (OA) publications are disappearing from the Internet. Making changes to peer review process, maximizing revenues through the SME market, and academics tweeting about preprints.

Seeking a Vaccine for Fake News

Issue 26 • August 2020

Bill Gates interview with Steven Levy, says most COVID-19 tests in the US “are completely garbage” and social media is a “poisoned chalice.” But he’s optimistic, placing his bets on massive innovation. A new library consortium in Texas, free access to scientific literature during the pandemic, and more.

End of an Era

Issue 25 • July 2020

HighWire Press, once the most prominent start-up in scholarly communications is sold to MPS for a stunningly low sale price. cOAlition S pens letter to publishers, providing several paths to compliant OA. The European Research Council is pulling out of Plan S. And more.


Issue 24 • June 2020

COVI-19 research scandals, accommodating budgets and reducing publishers’ fees, and openness of scholarly communications. Dealmaking in scholarly publishing. UCL and Springer Nature make a deal, MIT and Elsevier end negotiations, and OSU and Taylor & Francis enter into read and publish agreement.

Back to Business

Issue 23 • May 2020

Business outlook post-pandemic. Overflow of research, the speed of preprints, and the decline of women’s scholarly production. cOAlition S transparency rules.

The Whirlwind

Issue 22 • April 2020

Will things go back to normal? Budget cuts and furloughs, labs and fieldwork at a standstill, and accelerated change in higher education. COVID-19 research explodes, and most Springer Nature journals will join Plan S.