500 Word Letter to the Editor? $31.50…

500 Word Letter to the Editor? $31.50…
...real scientific and professional discussion? Priceless.* *And free In a previous post, Publishing in Science: Are Industry Standards Serving Researchers, Clinicians, and Science?@JasonSilvernail and I discussed some of the problems with the current publishing industry paradigm as well as our personal frustrations with the process. These insights stemmed from writing a letter to the editor of Manual Therapy, which is currently e-published ahead of print (in press, corrected proof). A link can be found here: Innominate 3D motion modeling: Biomechanically interesting, but clinically irrelevant. Well, unfortunately for you, reading that letter will cost you $31.50 unless you have a subscription to Manual Therapy, or are affiliated with an institution with accessing rights. For those of you doing mental math at home, that equates to 6.3 cents per WORD (references included at no extra charge!!) Of course, no abstracts accompany letters to the editor, but they do provide a 29 word preview (essentially 1.5 sentences). My question is: does anyone EVER buy a single letter to the editor? I sure hope not. Logically, I can't imagine publishing companies profit significantly off 500 word letters to the editor, because I can't imagine anyone buying them. Now, if you would like to read our longer, better version that was denied prior to review check out this post:        SI Joint Mechanics in Manual Therapy: Relevance, Please? It even includes links to 2 other blog posts that have healthy discussions happening in the comments section. The references section contains links directly to abstracts.
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Putting a 500 word letter to the editor behind a pay wall seems to accomplish nothing for science, discussion, clinicians, or even the publishing companies. We think it's time for a change... @JasonSilvernail   &   Dr_Ridge_DPT  
About Kyle Ridgeway

Dr. Kyle Ridgeway, PT, DPT enjoys the color purple and is an advocate of Tigers. Early in his career he practiced in an outpatient clinic (small private practice), academic hospital (in-patient), and long term acute care hospital. He treated within the confines of a randomized control trial investigating early intensive physical therapy with patients who are critically ill and require mechanical ventilation. Currently, he practices at University of Colorado Hospital where he also assists with program design and data collection. Kyle is now the coordinator of a medical ICU physical therapy quality improvement project at UCH.

  1. Jason Silvernail DPT, DSc 03/29/2012, 7:42 pm Reply

    We want to also assure everyone that there is no charge for commenting here. Which platform is more conducive to sharing knowledge between professionals?

  2. Kyle Ridgeway 03/30/2012, 7:08 pm Reply

    I would rather play Mega Millions than spend $31.50 on a short letter to the editor. What else would you do with $31.50?

  3. Joe Brence 04/05/2012, 4:30 am Reply

    I would buy a case of Guinness

  4. Kyle Ridgeway 04/23/2012, 6:29 am Reply

    Academic publishing doesn’t add up. Via The Guardian: http://m.guardian.co.uk/technology/2012/apr/22/academic-publishing-monopoly-challenged?cat=technology&type=article

    And, TIm Gowers (field medal recipient) on refusing to submit manuscripts or review for Elsevier: http://gowers.wordpress.com/2012/01/21/elsevier-my-part-in-its-downfall/