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Free Content Pricing and other means of charging for scholarly journals: a literature review and commentary

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There has been a clear upward trend over the past 50 years in traditional listed print subscription prices. The more recent trend towards electronic publishing has made possible new ways of charging for journals, such as differential pricing structures and bundling of journals which are purchased through license fees/charges (both of which enable libraries to buy significantly more journals, but at the same time make it more difficult to analyze prices). We are now also seeing a new emphasis on the 'author-side payment' model. This article analyzes pricing and charging policies and trends, illustrating how these are affected by the complexities of the evolving journal system.

Document Type: Review Article


Publication date: October 1, 2008

More about this publication?
  • Editor in Chief: Pippa Smart
    North American Editor: Judy Luther

    Learned Publishing is the journal of the Association of Learned and Professional Society Publishers, published in collaboration with the Society for Scholarly Publishing. The journal is published quarterly in January/April/July/October.

    Learned Publishing articles are available free online to members of ALPSP and SSP.
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    Learned Publishing will be moving to Wiley-Blackwell as of January 1, 2016. Please contact the publisher at for information on how to continue access to this title.

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