How journals obtain copyright for scientific papers for nothing
I'm the author of several papers in prestigeous scientific journals.
I have written them myself, in my own free time, not as part of a job paid by taxpayers money. Nonetheless, I do not receive even a single cent for my publications. All the income of the scientific journals containing my papers goes 100% to the owners of the journals.
On the one hand, that's my own fault. I have volitionally given the copyright to these journals.
On the other hand, there is a structural problem with these journals - they own the copyright for all their papers for free, for nothing. Some even require extra publication fees.
How is this possible? The system is the following:
- Today, almost all scientists are paid by the government. Independent scientists, like me, are rare exceptions.
- The scientific bureaucracy evaluates scientist by considering their publications in established scientific journals. What counts is the number of publications and the prestige of the journal.
- Therefore, it is very important for scientists to publish their papers in such established journals. They can afford this, because they are paid by taxpayers money.
- But, as an independent scientist, I have to follow this scheme if I want to have at least a hope to be recognized: If you have no publications in established journals, your scientific reputation will be zero -- mainstream scientists will think that your work is nonsensical without considering them themself. If you are unable to publish in established peer-reviewed journals, you are considered to be a crank.
- The established journals are the winners. They don't have to pay their authors - they are paid by the taxpayer. They don't have to pay for their referees - they are also paid by the taxpayer. They obtain the copyright for free. And then they ask phantasy prices for downloading an article.
Fortunately, in physics there is an e-print Server arxiv.org, where physicists can upload their papers before publication in journals, and everybody can download them for free. And usually, with the publication in the journal, the published version of the paper is uploaded to arxiv.org too, so that there is an alternative to downloading papers for journals.
Nonetheless, these journals make large profits out of taxpayers money.
So, do not support these journals who don't pay the authors even a single cent for their copyright
Instead, download physical papers only from arxiv.org, or ask their authors for a copy. If you want to support the authors, support them directly.
If you like my papers, you can do in the following way:
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