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Free Journals with Open Access Publication


The terms “free journals” and “open access” are being used frequently by the publishers but at some points, these terms are very confusing for the authors. Free Journals should be used only for those journals that are free for article publication and do not charge any kind of fee from the author to publish their research work. On the other hand, open-access journals should be used only for those journals that allow everyone to read and download articles freely without charging any kind of fee (neither access fee nor subscription fee).

When we combine both terms and say, “Free Open Access Journal” or its variant, It should mean that the journal is publishing the article without charging any fee from the author and offering their readers to read/download articles freely without any type of fee.

Before proceeding further to discuss both terms, ‘free journals’ and ‘open access journals’; let me introduce you few free open-access refereed journals published by AIJR.

Free journals with open access by AIJR

(Free to Publish and Free to Read)

Besides Free Publication (Normal Publication), the above journals are also offering rapid review through optional fast-track publication, and the author needs to send an additional email request to consider articles under the fast track. All submitted articles to journals published by AIJR undergo peer review and upon acceptance made available immediately and permanently free for everyone to read and download.

Let’s back to our discussion to differentiate between the terms “Free Journals” and “Open Access Journals”. Open Access is a standard term that simply means that the journal articles under open access will be available free to read, download, and reuse as per license terms of the journal. This term has further been classified into, Gold, Green, and Hybrid open access based on the embargo time to make the article freely available and archiving policy for the authors. Since the term “open access” is self-explanatory that, the article will be available freely, I think there is no need to use the term “Free Journal” for those journals whose only article is available freely based on the open access model. Using the term ‘Free journal’ for those whose only published articles are available freely confuses authors with the free publication.

Open Access Journal with Low-cost publication

(Free to Read but not Free to Publish)

AIJR also offers low-cost ($50) publication under the regular publication model in the following journals-

Many publishers list their journals under the term Free Journal and by free journal, they meant open access journals which confuses many authors. Free Journals normally should be considered only those journals that offer free publication without charging any kind of fee from the author(s). We can find many blogpost complaints about journals that were supposed to be free but after acceptance author suddenly received a bill to pay. I think those things happen due to publishers highlighting those journals as free journals instead of saying open access and the author might not read the full terms and conditions for publishing and get trapped. I believe that journal publishers should use the proper term “Free Journal” for free publication and “Open Access” for free article availability to avoid confusion and trapping authors. Journal publishers should use the terms “Free Open access journals” or its other variant only when they are offering both, free publishing as well as free availability.

I suggest potential author(s) to read publisher,s terms carefully for using term 'free journals,, whether they meant the free availability of published articles or free publication of the articles.

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