There are more and more options for non-exploitative publishers

August 4, 2019

I’ve been on vacation for a couple of weeks, hence the radio silence here at SV-POW! after the flood of Supersaurus posts and Matt’s new paper on aberrant nerves in human legs.

But the world has not stood still in my absence (how rude of it!) and one of the more significant things to have happened in this time is the announcement of RVHost, a hosted end-to-end scholarly publishing solution provided by River Valley Technologies.

It’s not so long ago that scholarly publishing remained technically difficult, and could only be achieved by using expensive proprietary technologies. Journals that rolled their own tended to make rather creaky systems that were not much fun to use — and come to that, the commercial systems were mostly pretty wretched, too. But now there are a lot more options. I’ve surely missed some, but among the low-cost, open-oriented hosted publishing solutions out there are:

These platforms (and others that I have no doubt missed — do remind me, in the comments) provide a range of service levels and price points so that every journal should be able to find a service that suits it. Editorial boards wanting to move away from exploitative publishers have all sorts of options these days, and it’s ever easier to go open access.

13 Responses to “There are more and more options for non-exploitative publishers”

  1. Rugosidens Excelsus Says:

    So, if you were to publish a scientific paper in a journal on one of these, it wouldn’t matter which one you chose, as long as your journal is sufficient, it would qualify under the ICZN?

  2. Mike Taylor Says:

    Yes, of course! The ICZN knows and cares nothing about the platform or hosted-service-provider used by the publisher of the journal that a paper appears in.

  3. Rugosidens Excelsus Says:

    Very cool, thanks for the info

  4. Rugosidens Excelsus Says:

    This might seem kind of off topic but it’s been nagging me for a while: what are your thoughts on the fact that Greg Paul has referred Apatosaurus louisae to Brontosaurus as Brontosaurus louisae?

  5. Mike Taylor Says:

    I didn’t know about that, and I don’t have a well-formed opinion on it. But off the top of my head, and based on cervicals alone, it doesn’t look ridiculous. Tschopp et al. (2015:figures 114, 115, 117 and 118) don’t support it, but in each case a single clade moving across a single node would be enough to change that.

  6. Rugosidens Excelsus Says:

    That is true, and when I looked at the paper myself it seemed as though they based their 13-character genus separation on the assumption that:
    (1: Diplodocus carnegii and D. hallorum are the same genus, and,
    (2: Apatosaurus ajax and A. louisae are the same genus as well.
    At least, that’s the impression I gathered in my non-professional mind.

  7. Mike Taylor Says:

    No, the beauty of Tschopp et al. (23015) is that they didn’t make any assumptions about phylogeny. They coded each individual as its own OTU, so that the groupings making up species, genera and broader clades could emerge from the phylogeny rather than dictating it.

  8. Rugosidens Excelsus Says:

    Oh, I see now, yes, you are right, it does say here that they came out as sister groups, and I quote:

    “The minimum number of required differences for generic separation was chosen based on the count obtained from the well-established species of Apatosaurus (A. ajax and A. louisae) and Diplodocus (D. carnegii and D. hallorum). These species are all represented by reasonably complete specimens, allowing for good comparison, have been generally accepted as species within their respective genera in the past, and were recovered as sister taxa in our analysis. Character changes amount to 12 between A. ajax and A. louisae, and eleven between D. carnegii and D. hallorum. Therefore, a minimum of 13 changes is herein considered necessary for generic separation.” Tschopp et al. (2015: Methods “under ‘apomorphy counts'”)

  9. Mike Taylor Says:

    I’d missed that Diplodocus hallorum (i.e. “Seismosaurus“) was separated from the de-facto type species Diplodocus carnegii by eleven characters. That’s interesting, especially in light of all the people considering them conspecific. IIRC, Lovelace el al. (2008) scored them completely identically in their matrix, until they added an extra character specifically to capture an observed difference. So it looks like hallorum is good and distinct after all.

  10. Rugosidens Excelsus Says:

    I hadn’t heard much about them being nonspecific, though when I read The Sauropod Dinosaurs: life in the age of giants by Hallett and Wedel, it did seem to vaguely give off that impression.

  11. Mike Taylor Says:

    Do you mean conspecific?

  12. Mike Taylor Says:

    (By the way, there’s no need to post off-topic comments on the most recent post on this blog. Post any comment on the most appropriate post, and we will see it. But since we’ve started this thread here, it may as well stay here.)

  13. Rugosidens Excelsus Says:

    Darn’ autocorrect! (And yes, will do)


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