(28 Sep 2022) cOAlition S releases today the end-user portal of the Journal Comparison Service (JCS). This secure, free, online service aims to shed light on publishing fees and services and enable those who procure publishing services to better understand how journals and publishers compare on a range of key indicators.
As of today, libraries and library consortia who negotiate and participate in Open Access agreements with publishers can sign up for the JCS. Once they sign the End User agreement, they can start comparing data across journals and across publishers, such as publication frequency, times from submission to acceptance, and the range of list prices for APCs and subscription prices. Crucially, the JCS also provides information on how the price is allocated over a standard set of services, such as managing peer review, post acceptances services (copyediting, XML creation etc.), and sales and marketing.
Since the launch of the publisher’s portal in May 2022, a number of publishers – including the Royal Society, the International Union of Crystallography and the Polish Botanical Society – have already responded positively to the research community’s need for greater transparency and started sharing information, at journal level, regarding the services they provide and the prices they charge in line with one of the Plan S approved price and service transparency frameworks.
The deadline for providing price and service data for 2021 is the end of October 2022. We hope that by this date, a significant number of publishers will have deposited data with this service, thus addressing calls from the research community that has asked for greater transparency on these issues.
By registering to the JCS, educational establishments, and library consortia involved in negotiating Open Access agreements with publishers can obtain more standard, transparent, and granular price and service information. Such information enables them to better understand what services and service levels publishers offer and assess whether the fees they pay are commensurate with the publication services delivered. At the same time, publishers are demonstrating their commitment to open business models and business cultures.
To further explore the JCS, please visit https://journalcomparisonservice.org and https://www.coalition-s.org/journal-comparison-service.
The press release in full is here.