[Lingtyp] papercopy LT

Martin Haspelmath haspelmath at shh.mpg.de
Wed Jul 5 05:12:51 UTC 2017

"Diagnosis first, therapy second":

1. Diagnosis: Scholars need recognized publication, not out of "vanity", 
but because publication (and also citation) is the currency in which we 
measure success – and when publication labels are owned by private 
companies, this is like a license to print money.

2. Therapy: Publication labels need to be in the hands of scholars. ALT 
was founded (in part) in order to create a prestigious publication label 
– and thanks to Frans's admirable efforts, LT is such a label, but it is 
owned by a private company (because De Gruyter learned from Robert 
Maxwell). Thus the next generation's task is to re-create a label that 
is fully owned by ALT.

The issue is no longer paper vs. online, but scholarly control vs. 
outside control: If De Gruyter were willing to give us the same deal 
that Ubiquity is giving Glossa, then we could even stay with De Gruyter. 
But they are in control (as demonstrated also by their logo on every 
page of each LT paper), so they don't have to ask us.


On 04.07.17 22:52, Frans Plank wrote:
> I'm not sure whether the recent Editorial Report in LT 20(3) (my last; 
>  "un-published", but here is a quote) helps Martin at least with 
> diagnosing our predicament.
> [...]  Scholarship does not perforce
> NEED journals. You can have an idea, make a discovery, defend an analysis,
> develop an argument and discuss it with friends and colleagues, correspond
> about it, privately or in your blog, report it at scholarly meetings, 
> write it up and
> put it on your own internet platform. The hearing you thus get in your 
> discipline
> may be of a magnitude most journal publications cannot hope to rival: only
> think of the audiences conference presentations sometimes attract even 
> in our
> own modest typological circles. You may get acknowledged and even receive
> formal recognition – except, unless you are published, the record you 
> are on is
> that of individual or collective memory. The way we scholars are, 
> creatures of
> yesterday’s habit, we would much rather see our precious words 
> preserved in
> black and white. But the last word on whether circulation in cold 
> print, or
> eternal storage in one or another repository, is called for is really 
> the reader’s.
> (I quote out of context;  the context is that in debates about 
> publishing models it would be good to know more about readers.)
> The GUARDIAN article Martin refers to offers another (though perhaps 
> related) diagnosis, implying that it was not so much our "lack of 
> organization", but, ulitmately, our vanity that enabled Robert Maxwell 
> and his copycats at Elsevier to fundamentally change the ways of 
> scholarly publishing.
> Diagnosis first, therapy second.  (If vanity is involved, there are 
> many who have considered it a therapy-resistant folly.)
> Frans
> On 04 Jul 2017, at 21:35, Martin Haspelmath <haspelmath at shh.mpg.de 
> <mailto:haspelmath at shh.mpg.de>> wrote:
>> On 04.07.17 19:36, Wu Jianming wrote:
>>> Dear colleagues,
>>>   ...
>>>       I am wondering whether there is another way to spread good  
>>> ideas freely and efficiently, which, nontheless, is equally 
>>> recognized by the authority, just like journals.
>> Good ideas (or bad ideas) can be published easily these days (e.g. 
>> you can easilyupload your paper to Academia or Zenodo 
>> <https://www.frank-m-richter.de/freescienceblog/2017/02/24/what-should-what-do-i-do-with-my-draft-paper-hide-it-upload-to-academia-or-upload-to-zenodo/>, 
>> at no cost), but for professional recognition, one needs a 
>> well-organized social mechanism.
>> Scholars have not been well-organized in the past: As Stephen Buranyi 
>> explains in a fascinating recentGuardian article 
>> <https://www.theguardian.com/science/2017/jun/27/profitable-business-scientific-publishing-bad-for-science>, 
>> over decades they left the initiative to commercial companies, who 
>> own the titles and who make huge profits (or waste our money because 
>> of inefficient organization). If standard business criteria were 
>> employed, then publishing a scholarly article would cost between$100 
>> and $500 
>> <http://bjoern.brembs.net/2016/12/should-public-institutions-not-be-choosing-the-lowest-responsible-bidder/>, 
>> not $5000 as is currently the case.
>> So how do we get out of the current predicament? I don't know, but we 
>> first need to recognize that we are in a disastrous situation.
>> Maybe we could have a typology journal that is published with a model 
>> similar to that of Glossa (with optional fees,supported by OLH 
>> <https://www.openlibhums.org/journals/>). Maybe we could find a 
>> university that gives "tenure 
>> <https://www.frank-m-richter.de/freescienceblog/2017/02/21/we-dont-need-open-access-but-scholar-owned-publication-brands/>" 
>> to a typology journal, the way most universities give tenure to 
>> researchers. Any ALT members out there with connections to librarians 
>> who want to secure their future by moving into publishing?
>> In any event, using ALT's money for "publication" (in fact, 
>> un-publication) behind a paywall is not sustainable in the longer 
>> run, so we desperately need new good ideas.
>> Best,
>> Martin
>> -- 
>> Martin Haspelmath (haspelmath at shh.mpg.de)
>> Max Planck Institute for the Science of Human History
>> Kahlaische Strasse 10	
>> D-07745 Jena
>> &
>> Leipzig University
>> IPF 141199
>> Nikolaistrasse 6-10
>> D-04109 Leipzig
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Martin Haspelmath (haspelmath at shh.mpg.de)
Max Planck Institute for the Science of Human History
Kahlaische Strasse 10	
D-07745 Jena
Leipzig University
IPF 141199
Nikolaistrasse 6-10
D-04109 Leipzig

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