Springer buys BMC

Open access publisher BioMed Central sold to Springer:

Those in the open access movement had watched BioMed Central with keen interest. Founded in 2000, it was the first for-profit open access publisher and advocates feared that when the company was sold, its approach might change. But Cockerill assured editors that a BMC board of trustees “will continue to safeguard BioMed Central’s open access policy in the future.” Springer “has been notable…for its willingness to experiment with open access publishing,” Cockerill said in a release circulated with the email to editors.

2 responses to “Springer buys BMC

  1. I’ve heard this elsewhere. But it’s an absurd concern. Why on earth would Springer buy BioMed Central just to kill it? They’re clearly buying it because they see open access as the future – or at least a major part of the future – of scientific publishing and they want to be a player in this end of the biz.
    Proponents of open access should see this as an unambiguously good thing – it puts to rest once and for all the canard that open access is a nice idea but not a viable business model. Big corporations don’t spend tens of millions of dollars (which is presumably what BMC cost them) on nice ideas.

  2. I agree with you (and Peter Suber) on this – I think this is a good move: a way for a big publisher to go OA with the smallest possible initial risk. Instead of risking opening their old journals, they decided to buy existing successful OA journals. This may just be the move that turns the tide.