On June 12 PeerJ was announced, a new model for peer-reviewed Open Access publishing based on membership and community rather than a charge to cover publishing costs. Make what you will of the neologistic name, PeerJ promises authors the lifetime right to publish for a one-off membership fee from as little as $99. Its founders, including Peter Binfeld, who recently stepped down from heading PLoSOne, also claim to be be re-inventing the peer review process, allowing greater transparency and promising a turn-around of one month. The challenge for PeerJ will be its eschewing of impact factor, with accepted articles being judged on scientific validity alone. (Ed’s note: they’ve responded to this here, among other questions put to them following the launch). Nevertheless, the move promises to shake the world of academic publishing by harnessing the potential of the modern web to bring greater interactivity, transparency and simple speed of process to peer review and publishing.
Read more on Ars Technica or Nature or from among a whole host of media coverage, including a post by the University of Auckland’s champion for OA, Fabiana Kubke, professor of neuroscience, on her Building Blogs of Science site.