Appropriate Reviewer Remuneration

As an academic, I perform a fair number of reviews. Usually, that’s part of the system, i.e. it is a give and take and fair exchange between colleagues and publishers without any monetary remuneration changing hands at all.

Then my university library complained about Elsevier’s predatory pricing and I decided to stop reviewing papers for Elsevier publications to support freedom of research and my university’s budget.

Next, I ran into the situation of wanting access to an Elsevier paper. Usually I don’t cite Elsevier papers; I just ignore them. In this case, however, I was actually curious about the paper content and wanted to use it for a talk.

Getting access to that paper took two weeks and it came too late for my talk, see this anecdotal description. However, this gave me the following idea: Why not ask for full free access to the journal in return for the reviewing service I’m providing?

Sounds like a no-brainer and I guess many folks have already asked for it. So did I, just now. Not that I’m expecting to receive a yes but it is important to make clear that predatory pricing like Elsevier’s should come to an end.

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