Letters to the Editor
First Monday

Letters to the


Date: Thu, 6 May 1999 15:30:52 +0100
From: Claire Jones
To: ejv@uic.edu
Subject: Congratulations in your Web site!

Dear Webmaster

I would like to inform you that a link to First Monday has been added to the Internet Free-Press Web site. You can access the IF-P Links section at http://www.free-press.com/ links where you will find your site listed under the category of Electronic Publishing. First Monday was selected as a good example of an electronic resource and felt worthy of being exhibited as such to our visitors.

Can I encourage you to visit Internet Free-Press (at http://www.free-press.com) and join our online community of those interested and involved in the field of electronic publishing? May I also request that you include a link to us from your Web site if you feel that Internet Free-Press would be a useful electronic publishing resource for your visitors. I have attached a choice of small images that you may or may not wish to include along with a hypertext link to http://www.free-press.com

Thank you for providing such an informative and interesting site.

Warm regards



Claire Jones
Brand Executive: Internet Free-Press

Tel: +44 (0) 1274 785132
Fax: +44 (0) 1274 777201

Date: Fri, 23 Apr 1999 09:44:04 -0500
From: Jay Woods
To: ejv@uic.edu
Subject: Scholarly Publishing, Peer Review and The Internet

Dear Sir:

I have a couple of comments on Peter Roberts' excellent article.

Starting with a quote from the paper:

"These 'Great Books' have been converted to hypertext mark-up language (HTML) - a few are still available in ASCII form - and housed in large, well-organised collections through comprehensive scholarly initiatives such as Project Gutenberg."

An implication of this sentence is that Project Gutenberg offers books in HTML. In fact they offer about 2,000 texts in ASCII as a matter of policy. The large, well-organised collection of HTML (8,731 books this morning) is Books-On-Line. I understand your reluctance to get into much detail on this question. My list of sites is well behind and with the backlog is over 100 long.

The second is a general observation: I hope that you reach beyond the anecdotal evidence soon for a model of the process with figures to back it up.

"In the case of journals, much depends on the goodwill of editors. Anecdotal tales of being 'set up' by editors abound in academic corridors. Such experiences - where referees known to be especially 'vicious' in their criticisms, or to have strong prejudices against particular perspectives, are selected - can be devastating for beginning scholars setting out on the path to an academic career."

An example here is to trace a random selection of papers to determine how they ended up in the journals that they did. If the papers involved the type of problem highlighted above then, what was the outcome in terms of citation? Are the problems clustered by journal? In other words try to establish that there are real problems with certain editors that involve bad selection criteria.


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