News & Views: OSTP Memo – Modeling Market Impact – Delta Think

“This month we look at the possible effects of the new OSTP Public Access policy on the value of the scholarly publishing market. We also suggest some ways that publishers can meet the challenges ahead….

At this stage it is not possible to predict the specific approaches the various federal agencies will choose. The policy does not rule out publication in hybrid journals and the economic impact assessment discusses the notion of publication charges. Issues around licenses, manuscript types, and manuscript location, are left open as well as requirements around data.

The models below consider a general case: What might happen if “open” content in some form is good enough to replace subscriptions? And is there an upside if the newly open content were paid for in some way? …

The OSTP’s Economic Impact Statement (issued along with its new policy) puts this proportion at between 6.7% and 9.1% of global output. Our own analysis suggests a figure between 6.6% and 7.2%. …

Specific publishers will find their situation different to the broad market averages. One difference will be the share of their papers arising from US federally funded research. Delta Think has worked with publishers, predominantly US-based, where federally funded research accounts for 30-50% of their publications. A second difference is the size of the gap between the lower revenue generated per open access article, and the higher revenue generated per subscription access article. For many publishers, the difference is less than the market average. So as the balance of their publication output shifts towards OA, their subscription revenues won’t fall as quickly as market averages….

A few other important drivers are not immediately obvious from the charts:

The US’s share of global output is declining slowly: 1 percentage point or less per year, depending on the data sources used. Therefore, the effects of the OSTP policy reduce over time. (Which is why the charts head back towards the horizontal axis.)
Pricing policies are key. Understanding reduction in market value could help publishers to set price increases and help funders and buyers to understand likely cost implications. Publication fees can be optimized across a portfolio of journals and subscription prices raised further to offset softening revenues.
As the difference in revenues per article between OA and subscription narrows, then the effects become less profound. We have long noted that publication charges are likely to rise to achieve parity with subscriptions.
The models show revenue changes compounded over time. They don’t show annual revenue increases generated by increasing APC prices….”

 

The Oligopoly’s Shift to Open Access. How For-Profit Publishers Benefit from Article Processing Charges | Zenodo

Butler, Leigh-Ann, Matthias, Lisa, Simard, Marc-André, Mongeon, Philippe, & Haustein, Stefanie. (2022). The Oligopoly’s Shift to Open Access. How For-Profit Publishers Benefit from Article Processing Charges (Version v1). Zenodo. https://doi.org/10.5281/zenodo.7057144 Abstract: This study aims to estimate the total amount of article processing charges (APCs) paid to publish open access (OA) in journals controlled by the large commercial publishers Elsevier, Sage, Springer-Nature, Taylor & Francis and Wiley, the so-called oligopoly of academic publishing. Since the early 2010s, these five academic publishers control more than half of peer-reviewed journal articles indexed in the Web of Science (WoS), expanding their market power through acquisitions and mergers. While traditionally their business model focused on charging subscriptions to read articles, they have now shifted to OA, charging authors fees for publishing. These APCs often amount to several thousand dollars, excluding many from publishing on economic grounds. This study computes an estimate of the total amounts of APCs paid to oligopoly publishers between 2015 and 2018, using publication data from WoS, OA status from Unpaywall and annual APC prices from open datasets and historical fees retrieved via the Internet Archive Wayback Machine. We estimate that globally authors paid the oligopoly of academic publishers $1.06 billion in publication fees in the 4-year period analyzed. Of the 505,903 OA articles analyzed, 60.9% were published in gold OA journals, 8.6% in diamond (gold with APC=$0) and 30.5% in hybrid journals. Revenue from gold OA amounted to $612.5 million, while $448.3 million was obtained for publishing OA in hybrid journals, for which publishers already charge subscription fees. Among the five publishers, Springer-Nature made the largest revenue from OA ($589.7 million), followed by Elsevier ($221.4 million), Wiley ($114.3 million), Taylor & Francis ($76.8 million) and Sage ($31.6 million). With Elsevier and Wiley making the majority of APC revenue from hybrid fees and others focusing on gold, different OA strategies could be observed between publishers.

The OAPEN Dashboard – a new partner service  – OAPEN – supporting the transition to open access for academic books

During the UKSG 2022 Annual Conference held from May 30th to June 2nd in Telford UK we officially launched the OAPEN Dashboard1 – a new analytics service for our library members, publishers and funder partners to help them gain a deeper understanding of the usage of open access books. 

Over 179 publishers, libraries and funders are using the dashboard today and we expect to welcome more users over the coming months. The dashboard service includes data for the entire OAPEN Library which is home to over 24,000 open access books that see over 1 million COUNTER-conformant downloads per month.  

Panel Discussion: The Role of Publishers and Libraries in the Evolution of Open Research | September 19, 2022 | Library Journal

“The role of institutional libraries and of publishers continues to evolve along with the changing landscape of research dissemination. Open access publishing has paved the way for a broader open science or open research landscape that emphasizes the importance of sharing research elements across the scientific discovery process. Sharing across the lifecycle supports greater transparency, assists in reproducibility and replicability, and can speed up the dissemination of important research outcomes.  In the US, an increasing number of policies, practices, and guidelines are helping to encourage openness from data to code to publication. Institutional libraries are responding by providing leadership in the open science environment through activities like expanding support for grant compliance, helping facilitate data reuse, and working with organizations to build the necessary infrastructure to facilitate an open research process.  Publishers are likewise exploring new models, technologies, and processes to support greater openness and to shift away from a pay-to-read model. F1000’s innovative publishing model, for example, is designed to fully promote open science practices by requiring FAIR compliant data with submission, allowing for a broad variety of publication types beyond standard journal articles, and using open community peer review to validate research. In this panel discussion, representatives from State University of New York at Stony Brook, Library Journal, F1000 and Taylor & Francis will convene for an interactive discussion about the ways in which institutional libraries are collaborating with partners to advance open science principles, rigor and reproducibility, and research innovations.

Speakers:

Joseph Lerro – Open Research Business Development Manager, the Americas – F1000 and Taylor & Francis Group
Dr. Vitaly Citovsky, Ph.D./SUNY – Distinguished Professor, Department of Biochemistry and Cell Biology – State University of New York at Stony Brook
Mona Ramonetti, Head of Scholarly Communication, Stony Brook University Libraries
Lisa Federer, Data Science and Open Science Librarian, National Library of Medicine…”

Book publishers, Internet Archive spar over fate of digital-book lending lawsuit | Reuters

By Blake Brittain

(Reuters) – The Internet Archive and a coalition of major book publishers submitted dueling arguments Friday to persuade a Manhattan federal court that they deserve an immediate win in their potential landmark copyright dispute over digital lending.

The parties squared off in opposing court papers over the legality of the Archive’s “controlled digital lending” of digitally scanned print books, which the Archive equates to traditional library lending but the publishers call a front for mass infringement.

[…]

 

Internet Archive Opposes Publishers in Federal Lawsuit – Internet Archive Blogs

“On Friday, September 2, we filed a brief in opposition to the four publishers that sued Internet Archive in June 2020: Hachette Book Group, Harper Collins Publishers, John Wiley & Sons, and Penguin Random House. This is the second of three briefs from us that will help the Court decide the case….

Our opposition brief responds to the arguments raised in the publisher’s motion for summary judgment. There, some of the world’s largest and most-profitable publishers complained that sometimes “Americans who read an ebook use free library copies, rather than purchasing a commercial ebook.” They believe that copyright law gives them the right to control how libraries lend the books they own, and demand that libraries implement the restrictive terms and conditions that publishers prefer.

 

Our opposition brief explains that “[p]ublishers do not have a right to limit libraries only to inefficient lending methods, in hopes that those inefficiencies will lead frustrated library patrons to buy their own copies.” The record in this case shows that publishers have suffered no economic harm as a result of our controlled digital lending–indeed, publishers have earned record profits in recent years. “[D]igital lending of physical books costs rightsholders no more or less than, for example, lending books via a bookmobile or interlibrary loan. In each case, the books the library lends are bought and paid for, ensuring that rightsholders receive all of the financial benefits to which they are entitled.” …”

Zero Embargo | Clarke & Esposito

“A scenario that has been on the minds of publishers over the past decade (and incorporated into strategic planning scenarios by many publishers) is the possibility of “zero embargo.” In 2013, the White House Office of Science and Technology Policy (OSTP) issued policy guidance to agencies in the form of the OSTP memorandum on “Increasing Access to the Results of Federally Funded Scientific Research” (the “2013 Memorandum,” also widely referred to as the “Holdren Memo” because it was issued by John Holdren, at the time the Director of OSTP). The Holdren Memo directed federal agencies in the US with annual research and development budgets of more than $100 million to develop access policies to ensure public access to federally funded research. While the Holdren Memo provided wide latitude to agencies on many of the specifics, the memo put forth a 12-month post-publication embargo period as a guideline. By “post-publication embargo period,” the Holdren Memo was referring to the period between publication of an article resulting from funded research in a journal and the freely accessible public release of that journal article in the form of either the author accepted manuscript (AAM) or the final published version of record (VOR). 

OSTP is an office of the White House and as such sets policy on behalf of the US President. The US federal agencies—including the National Institutes of Health (NIH), Department of Energy (DOE), Department of Defense (DOD), National Science Foundation (NSF), Department of Agriculture (USDA), National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA), and so on—are part of the Executive Branch and therefore under White House oversight. Any OSTP policy can be revised by a subsequent administration, and one possibility has always been that the 12-month post-publication embargo could be shortened, potentially to zero. Indeed, such a scenario almost occurred during the Trump administration when such a memorandum was drafted, though it was never ultimately issued.  

Rumors have been circulating for months that the Biden administration has been reviewing the Holdren Memo as part of a wider review of open science policy. Last week, Alondra Nelson (currently heading OSTP) issued a memorandum titled “Ensuring Free, Immediate, and Equitable Access to Federally Funded Research” (the “2022 Memorandum, or the “Nelson Memo”). The Nelson Memo is accompanied by an impact statement titled “Economic Landscape of Federal Public Access Policy” (the “2022 Impact Statement”), which was submitted to Congress pursuant to the Consolidated Appropriations Act, 2022. The 2022 Memorandum directs federal agencies to develop policies that will require free public release of research articles upon publication, and that all supporting research data behind the articles be similarly made immediately and freely available.

The zero embargo scenario has arrived….”

Cell Press and The Lancet titles now included in UC-Elsevier open access publishing agreement

Beginning September 1, 2022, UC corresponding authors publishing in Elsevier’s prestigious Cell Press and The Lancet journals will be able to publish their articles as open access with financial support from the UC libraries. Cell Press publishes 50 scientific journals in the life, physical, earth, and health sciences. The Lancet is one of the world’s oldest and most prestigious medical journals.

US makes taxpayer-funded research free to access | Times Higher Education (THE)

Only this subtitle is OA: “Campaigners say academic publishers will have to ‘figure this out pretty darn fast’ as Biden sets 2025 deadline for switch to instant open access.”

US requirements for public access to research | Unlocking Research

“Federal agencies have been asked to update their public access policies to make publications and supporting data publicly accessible without an embargo. This applies to all federal agencies (the previous policy only applied to those with more than $100 million in annual research and development expenditure) and allows for flexibility for the agencies to decide on some of the details while encouraging alignment of approaches. It applies to all peer-reviewed research articles in journals and includes the potential to also include peer-reviewed book chapters, editorials and peer-reviewed conference proceedings.

The emphasis on “measures to reduce inequities of, and access to, federally funded research and data” is particularly important in light of the serious risk that we will just move from a broken system with built-in inequities around access to information to a new broken system with built-in inequities around whose voices can be heard. Active engagement will be needed to ensure that the agencies take these issues into account and are not contributing to these inequities….”

Statement from Shelley Husband, Senior Vice President, Government Affairs, AAP, on Decision by The White House Office of Science and Technology Policy to Make Private Sector Publications Freely Available – AAP

“Today’s announcement from OSTP about access policies for private sector research publications comes without formal, meaningful consultation or public input during this Administration on a decision that will have sweeping ramifications, including serious economic impact….

In a no-embargo environment, in which private publications will be made immediately available by the government for free, our primary concerns are about business sustainability and quality.  

Many publishers have increased the speed and efficiency of the publication process, regularly launched new journals to increase the dissemination of research and embraced diverse publication and access models to sustain and support researchers and research institutions, including those that reduce time to access.  This important work is part of a competitive marketplace geared towards excellence; it is very different than the government mandating business models.  How will publishers, especially small publishers, sustain the accuracy, quality, and output that the public interest requires?

As we work with the Administration and Congress in the days ahead, our focus will be to preserve our nation’s leadership in research and innovation, and to ensure that we continue to have a vibrant independent industry for scholarly publications.”

IOP Publishing extends unlimited open access offering in the US – IOP Publishing

In support of the transition toward open access (OA), IOP Publishing (IOPP) has agreed five more unlimited OA publishing agreements with research institutions in the United States (US). The read and publish agreements will enable the University of Florida, North Carolina State University, Rowan University, Mount Holyoke College and Olin College of Engineering to publish unlimited research articles in all IOPP journals and almost all of IOPP’s partner journals at no cost to their affiliated authors.