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Locally Controlled Scholarly Publishing via the Internet: The Guild Model

Authors
Publisher
Rob Kling Center for Social Informatics
Publication Date
Keywords
  • Social Informatics
  • Guild Publishing Model
  • Arxiv
Disciplines
  • Communication

Abstract

Many librarians and scholars believe that the Internet can be used to dramatically improve scholarly communication. During the last decade there has been substantial discussion of five major publishing models where readers could access articles without a fee: electronic journals, hybrid paper-electronic journals, authors' self-posting on web sites, free online access to all peer reviewed literature, and disciplinary repositories where authors post their own unrefereed articles. There have been numerous projects within each of these models, as well as extensive discussions about their strengths and limitations. While some of these projects have become important scholarly resources in specific disciplines; none of them has become commonplace across numerous disciplines. There is a sixth model that has been quietly adopted and developed in a number of disciplines -- the research publication series called working papers or technical reports that are sponsored by academic departments or research institutes. Many of these manuscript series are available to readers, online, and free of charge. This model -- which we call Guild Publishing -- has a distinct set of advantages and limitations when compared with the other five publishing models. This article explains the Guild Publishing Model, provides some examples, and discusses its strengths and limitations.

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