Elsevier’s letter to mathematicians

Just like Timothy Gower and thousands of others, I have received in the past days an email from Elsevier about their pricing, agressive marketing policy towards University libraries, and support of the Research Work Act. This email was an answer to the growing action of the mathematical community to boycott Elsevier through [not] publishing/refereeing/aediting in Elsevier’s journals, an action started by an earlier blog of Timothy Gower. He has now posted his extensive reaction to this email and, as it perfectly fits mine, I see no point in writing another post (esp. with very limited posting abilities this week in Roma…)

5 Responses to “Elsevier’s letter to mathematicians”

  1. [...] on the list], meaning I now abstain from supporting the extremely unbalanced business model of Elsevier though publishing, reviewing, or (a)editing in one of the journals it publishes. (Which means I [...]

  2. Robin Hood of Plant Science Says:

    When a publisher offers funding to the tune of 500 Euros in return for publishing in their journals, is this legal? Isn’t this some form of fraud, blackmail or extortion? They might give you 500 Euros, but you would still have to pay registration fees, accomodation, etc, far exceeding the 500 EUros. Just because they have money, what gives them the right to buy out their competition with cheap pseudo-support? What are the criteria for selection exactly? Are these criteria available for the public to see? Boycott their meeting and don’t take the dirty cash. By supporting Elsevier (and know this they are just the tip of the ice-berg in terms of the rot in science publishing), you are actually responsible for their profits, which they then use as moral tools to tout you and to suck you dry later of profits and funds. Or maybe, be smart, take the dirty cash and advertise at the meeting how they gave you dirty cash to buy your presence at the meeting and a paper in their journal which will probably attract more profits than the 500 Euros. When are scientists, independent of their field of study, going to wake up to how much they are being suckered?

  3. Today I got a second email from Elsevier proposing a 500 euros travel grant to the 8th World Congress on Probability and Statistics this summer. “Having published in the journal SPA or any other Elsevier journal is preferred, but not a requirement.” A massive charm offensive!  

  4. As an independent researcher I agree whole-heartedly that the non-institutional download price for an academic journal is criminal. The per download profit margin based on cost of data hosting and transmission cost assuming all other costs already sunk (a fair assumption in the case of a body that contributes nothing to the research itself) is likely 500% or an order of magnitude greater.

    It’s an academic atrocity.

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