APC pricing that depends on how much work is involved

A number of the variations on pricing we see at can be summed up as variable pricing depending on how much work is involved (which seems logical when you think about it). The Journal of Venom Research provides a great example of this approach. The basic OA APC (per year) is GBP 475. This covers unlimited publishing for one year for articles within the recommended size limits. There are extra charges for:

  • extra pages
  • “if figures, line drawings or tables are of insufficient quality and standard, and do not conform to the journal style, and have to be re-drawn, re-sized or converted into the correct format by the Publisher (minimum charge GB £25 per item). In multi-part figures each part constitutes one item. Authors are generally notified of this at the time of manuscript revision”.
  • extensive reference formatting “Costs of extensive formatting of references will be passed on to the authors (minimum £50)”.

Comment: I like this approach. It gives authors and funders an opportunity to consider whether a little extra work to keep the cost down is worth it or not. Perhaps some of the extra pages can become supplementary material and deposited in the institutional repository rather than being included in the article. A busy author may find the optional work and charges convenient; a poor author may find it worthwhile to do the extra work to keep the costs down.

This post is part of the open access article processing charges project.

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