WikiJournal User Group/Comparison to other journals

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Throughout history, scholarly journals have been published. Subscription has been required for access to copyrighted journals. Alternatively, an article can be purchased, one must be an enrolled college or university student to access an article, or a user can search for free open-access journals, which have existed long before WikiJournal. Publishers of open-access journals have required charges for authors to publish their own works. Like many subscription-based journals, the peer review processes for most of those journals have been nontransparent. Publishing articles into WikiJournal, on the contrary, requires no charge. Moreover, at WikiJournal, comments by peer reviewers will be made publicly available once an article is either submitted or accepted; peer reviewers can be either anonymous or non-anonymous. Authors must consider whether licenses that WikiJournal accepts and/or transparency of comments by peer reviewers suit their needs and wishes before choosing WikiJournal for free publication. If licenses and/or transparency do not, then other non-Wikimedia journals may be more appropriate choices for them.

Comparison to open-access journals[edit | edit source]

Note: The table may not list all publishers and journals due to the length and size of the website and various devices.
  • NC = noncommercial; ND = no derivatives

Open-access journals using neither NC nor ND licenses[edit | edit source]

Journals /
Creative Commons
Attribution (CC BY)[1]
Other acceptable licenses[1] Publication fees Transparency of peer reviews
WikiJournal By default No charges Public peer review (either throughout process, or upon article acceptance)
Either anonymous or non-anonymous reviewers
SciPost Mandated None No charges Reviews are public for accepted articles. Reviewers choose to be anonymous or not.
European Geosciences Union
Mandated Open Government Licence[4] Varies Public peer review (either throughout process, or upon article acceptance)
Either anonymous or non-anonymous reviewers
F1000 Research Mandated CC Zero (only data) APC: US$150–1000[5] Public peer review (either throughout process, or upon article acceptance)
Names and affiliations of reviewers are revealed.
PeerJ Mandated None Article Processing Charges (APC): US$900–1100
Membership: US$400–500
Authors decide if reviews are public. Reviewers choose to be anonymous or not.
By default CC Zero (only data)[6] Varies Non-transparent, though one or a few journals conduct trial experiments on transparent peer reviews
PLOS (webpage) Mandated Probably none Varies Non-transparent
Redfame Publishing Mandated None[7] APC: US$200–400[8] Non-transparent
Frontiers Mandated for articles published on July 2012 and thereafter For articles published before July 2012:[9]
  • CC BY-NC
  • Publisher's own license

These licenses are no longer used for newer articles.

A-type: US$950–2950
B-type: US$700–1850
C-type: US$450
D-type: Free
Non-transparent, though names of reviewers are revealed when articles are published.

Reviewers who have withdrawn during the review process before publication shall remain anonymous.

BioCore Mandated None High-income (countries):
  • 1st (article): US$899
  • 2nd: US$799
  • Others: US$699 each


  • 1st: US$599
  • 2nd: US$499
  • Others: US$399 each


  • 1st and 2nd: US$299
  • Others: US$199 each
Apparently non-transparent
MDPI (webpage)[10] Open Access only Probably none APC varies in individual journals; a few offer free publication fees In some journals, authors decide if reviews are public. Reviewers choose to be anonymous or not.

Open-access journals allowing NC and ND licenses[edit | edit source]

Journals /
Creative Commons Attribution (CC BY)[1] Other acceptable licenses[1] Publication fees Transparency of peer reviews
Gold only Gold and green:

Open archive:

Gold: US$150–5000
Green: No charge
with plans to introduce more openness
Karger (webpage) Gold only; additional requirements also apply for funding bodies to use the license Gold:
  • CC BY-NC-ND (default)
  • CC BY-NC

Green: Limited

Gold: Varies
Green: Subscribing institutions pay the fees; no additional charges
SAGE Publishing (webpage) Gold only Gold and SAGE Choice:
  • CC BY-NC

Green: Limited

Gold: Varies
SAGE Choice (Hybrid Open Access): US$3000 plus fees
Green: Unknown, but possibly no charge
American Mathematical Society (webpage) Gold only Gold: CC BY-NC
Green: Transferred to publisher unless otherwise
APC (Gold): US$1500–2750
Green: Free
Membership: US$16–2940
(OA website)
By default
  • CC BY-NC
  • CC BY-NC-ND[12]
Varies Non-transparent
Oxford Univ. Press (webpage) Yes
  • CC BY-NC
£1000–£2500 plus additional fees Non-transparent
Nature Research (webpage) By default[13] Some other journals use other CC licenses, like CC BY-NC Varies Non-transparent
De Gruyter
No CC BY-NC-ND Open Access (full): €500–1500
Open Access (Hybrid): €2000
Additional fees also apply to both methods
PAGEPress Publications Probably no CC BY-NC APC: Varies, though some journals do not require authors to pay the charges
Membership: €100–600 plus applicable VAT
Medknow Publications Probably no CC BY-NC-SA Varies, though some journals may require no fees Non-transparent
Scientific Research Publishing[14] Yes
  • CC BY-NC
  • CC BY-NC-SA[15]
US$99–1299 Non-transparent
OpenEdition Journals Maybe some journals Varies; other journals use other CC licenses, like ones below:
  • CC BY-NC

Some or many other journals do not state which licenses to use.

Varies; some or many journals do not require fees Apparently non-transparent in most journals

Notes about above publications[edit | edit source]

  1. 1.0 1.1 1.2 1.3 version 4.0 International is the version of Creative Commons licenses used for more recent and current articles. Older articles may have been released under prior versions of CC licenses.
  2. uncertain whether CC BY-SA 4.0 is acceptable as it is not considered suitable for Wikipedia articles
  3. only if added with another compatible license; text content released on 15 July 2009 and thereafter under only this license cannot be imported into any project.
  4. only if affiliated with the British Government and its institutions
  5. Some discounts may apply but cannot be combined, especially for a single article.
  6. CC Zero can be used for articles if releasing the work into the public domain is required by law.
  7. One of the journals previously used CC BY and CC BY-NC simultaneously, but that turned out to be an error. The correct license is CC BY instead.
  8. Fees can be waived to "journal reviewers and editorial members" who perform their tasks under guidelines.[[1]
  9. An update to a licensing allowing commercial use, like CC BY or CC BY-SA, can be requested.
  10. MDPI was listed in 2014 in Jeffrey Beall's list of predatory open-access publishers. In 2015, it was de-listed from the list, which was later shut down in 2017.
  11. Accepted manuscripts using the Green Open Access option must attach the CC BY-NC-ND license
  12. 12.0 12.1 Elsevier and Wiley's (mis)usages of the CC BY-NC-ND license were discussed in Creative Commons's 13 March 2015 weblog post
  13. Policies (journals) from Nature Research
  14. included in Beall's List (shut down in 2017) as predatory publisher
  15. Some other articles use this CC BY-NC-SA, but whether the publisher still offers the CC BY-NC-SA option is uncertain

Comparison between open-access and other journals[edit | edit source]

Open-access journals Subscription-based journals
Access to articles Available to public, variably either immediate or delayed Must do one of the following
  • pay subscription fees to access articles
  • sign in an account (most likely college or university) to access them
  • buy an article
Usage and
licensing of
Various journals have licenses that can allow
one or more following uses
  • Commercial use
  • Noncommercial uses
  • Modifications
  • Derivative uses
  • Reproduction and distribution
Usually personal, noncommercial uses may be allowed.
Permission is required for other uses,
like reprinting and/or commercial uses.
of peer reviews
Varies; most of peer reviews at WikiJournal
are public via either process or article acceptance

Dubious and predatory publications[edit | edit source]

Journals and publishers that are considered dubious and/or predatory are not (supposed to be) listed in this page. If a listed journal or publisher is found to be dubious and/or predatory, it can be either marked as dubious and/or predatory, or removed from one of the lists above. Authors willing to publish their own works to non-Wikimedia journals should be aware of such journals and publishers and be certain how authentic they are before submitting works to them. The below links can further explain how to tell whether a journal or publisher is highly reputable.

Content licensing[edit | edit source]

"Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International" (CC BY 4.0) is the default license for articles in WikiJournal. Upon request, other acceptable licenses include any Wikipedia-compatible license or multi-licensing thereof. However, "noncommercial" and "no derivatives" licenses are not acceptable at Wikimedia projects.[1] If an article is to be used for only noncommercial uses and/or cannot be derived into other works, other existing non-Wikimedia journals may be more suitable for those needs. See also WikiJournal User Group/Ethics statement#Copyright and licensing.

Articles published on or before 1 January 1929 are in the public domain in the United States and are more suitable for Wikisource, Wikimedia Commons,[2] Internet Archive, and other websites that can hold public domain content.

Publication charges[edit | edit source]

Many publishers and journals require monetary charges for authors to release their works into Open Access. This is also true for works published under CC BY or CC BY-SA. WikiJournal, on the other hand, does not; rather publishing an article into one of its journals requires no costs. However, authors must consider how their works are to be distributed and used (see #Comparison to open-access journals or #Content licensing) before choosing WikiJournal for free publication.

Transparency of peer reviews[edit | edit source]

All comments made from peer reviewers will be made publicly available, at the latest upon article submission. The identities of peer reviewers are preferably made publicly available, but they may choose to be anonymous.

Peer review comments are generally made available publicly directly by direct wiki addition, or added as soon as possibly after reception by an editor. In some cases, the author may request that the peer review process is kept non-public. Many journals do not accept submissions that have been in the open at any time, and thereby authors may be harmed by premature disclosure of any or all of an article submission's details. In such cases, the peer review will be made public first after article publication.

Why transparency?[edit | edit source]

WikiJournals are unusual in their level of transparency. Transparent peer reviews allows for readers to get a deeper understanding of the material, particularly where it may be contentious. Also, even after at least 2 peer reviews, there may still be errors in the article, and open peer reviews allows readers to check whether these have been discussed earlier. Open peer reviews thereby give readers the ability to perform further quality checking of works.

Transparency is one of guiding principles valued and unanimously passed on 30 May 2013 as part of a resolution by the Wikimedia Foundation.

Notes[edit | edit source]

  1. For images at Wikimedia Commons, however, a non-free license may be acceptable only if a free license is added alongside it.
  2. non-US works must be also in the public domain in their respective countries of origin before uploading a file in Wikimedia Commons

External links[edit | edit source]