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At #FutureBook15: New prominence for academic publishing

In 'considering the hard-won lessons of the academic publishing journey,' the FutureBook 2015 programme in December was organised by Bookseller editor Philip Jones to place new and robust emphasis on the scholarly sector. Taylor&Francis' Michael Strang surveys this in a thoughtful look back at the day's high points. He notes that 'In that context, it was disappointing perhaps to see (SAGE excepted) so few representatives of the large commercial academic presses at the conference.'
   
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An important week for scholarly publishing in Europe

The second week in December has been a triumphant one in Europe for supporters of new developments in scholarly publishing. Two European announcements have underlined that the publishing landscape is fast changing. The first announcement took place on 9 December, when the European Commission issued a Communication on the future of European copyright reform. The second important event took place on 10 December, when Dutch universities and the publisher Elsevier issued a joint statement describing the new agreement that the Dutch have reached with this publisher from 2016.
   
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STM Publishing Continues to Drive Revenue, Innovation

Research published earlier in the year from International STM and Outsell valued the STM publishing market at approximately $25 billion, plus $10 billion in additional journal revenues. The number of published articles was also reported to be growing by 3.5 percent per year to stand at 2.5 million articles. The United States was suggested to lead the way with 36 percent of published articles with China said to publish 6 percent. It was also highlighted that since the beginning of journal publishing 350 years ago, the growth had been around 3 to 4 percent per annum.
   
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Academic Publishing Can't Remain Such a Great Business

Publishers generally don't pay for the articles they publish, or for the primary editing and peer reviewing essential to preparing them for publication (they do fork over some money for copy editing). Most of this gratis labor is performed by employees of academic institutions. Those institutions, along with government agencies and foundations, also fund all the research that these journal articles are based upon.
   
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Scientists defrauded by hijacked journals

Scientific progress is being hindered by the emergence of a relatively new kind of fraud - the hijacked scientific journal, according to researchers from Iran and Poland. They describe the problem and its detrimental effects on science in the International Journal of Technology Enhanced Learning. According to Mehdi Dadkhah of the Foulad Institute of Technology, in Isfahan and Tomasz Maliszewski of the Pomeranian University in Slupsk, hijacked journals are launched by fraudsters purely for financial gain. These journals deceptively steal the names and numbers of reputable, but perhaps less well known journals and charge authors publication charges under the pretext of being an open access publisher, but they are not authentic.
   
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