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multiple authors

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multiple authors

Postby arachne » Fri May 25, 2007 3:13 pm

Hi - I have just discovered that when there are multiple authors for a submission, the e-mail system treats them differently.

In the 'Submission' section (across all screens), both authors pop up when using the e-mail icon. Yet when an editor wants to send the authors a message in the 'Editor Decision' section, only the first/submitting author shows up. So unfortunately, one of my section eds failed to notice that and sent off a decision email to only one author.

We need to continue to use the 'Editor Decision' email because it records in the 'Editor/Author Email Record' and as a chief ed I need to see how my new editors are doing. So I can't just have them use the email through the 'Submission' section.

The addressees for the author communication emails should be the same across the various stages & sections, should they not?

Is there a fix?

cheers,
jenea
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Postby John » Fri May 25, 2007 11:13 pm

Arachne
Most journal systems identify a principal contact with whom to conduct all correspondence, to prevent editors from getting differing responses and versions back. While it may seem to be that we've been inconsistent in this, our thinking was that there may be cases when you need to contact all the authors, at which point you can use the Submission email icon, but when it comes to Editor Decision, Copyediting, Proofreading, it is best to work solely with the principal contact, and let the principal contact involve the other authors to the degree required.
Does that make sense, or have we unduly complicated things?
John
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Postby arachne » Sat May 26, 2007 3:51 pm

Ok, I can see what the thinking was there, re multiple players. We have always contacted both authors, unless they themselves set up a 'principal contact' as you say.

The thing is, this present set-up leaves it out of our control for communications to get to all authors - now, for important messages like editor decisions, we need to wait for the principal contact. And, hope that the principal contact is on the ball, and/or actually forwarding the correct info, etc.

And, like I noted, using the general 'author contact' seems fine until you see that it upsets the point of having the 'editor/author' correspondence tracking.

Am I right in suspecting the model for 'principal contact' you were thinking of was a natural sciences one, with many authors, some only tangetially involved in the final process? We're a humanities/social sciences journal, and 2 co-authors is the most we've had, both equally involved in the process.

Perhaps something in the journal management in 2.2 could be added - like a toggle to select a 'principal contact only' vs. 'contact all authors' model, per our own policies & disciplines.

cheers,
arachne
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Postby John » Sat May 26, 2007 5:10 pm

Creating a notify-all-authors option idea sounds like a good one to consider adding to the set up.

If just the Editor Decision alone is at issue, then it would be simple. Is this what you were thinking?

For the challenge for us would be to have the other authors involved in the posdt-acceptance editing process, that is, with the authors' involvement in copyediting and proofreading. There the challenge would be to ensure that authors both had a chance before the task is declared complete, if they wanted that, and that one did not overwrite the other, in the case of the author's review of copyediting. Of course, the principal author can always send the coppyedited version to the other author and manage the upload, as well as the proofreading galleys. But to manage mutilple authors within the system. Well, we do like challenges if you think that this would serve authors better, and add to the quality of the work.
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Postby arachne » Sat May 26, 2007 5:49 pm

I do think the Editor decision is a separate and important function. That's an 'official' notice and I think it should go to everyone. It's important, I think, for the editors to treat all co-authors equally in that instance, and not rely on someone else to forward that decision in a timely manner. Had some non-optimal experiences with that situation.

Whether we should also require multiple-author access to the editing stage, I am not so sure.

Again that depends on the journal & # of authors. Two is not so bad, more than that could get really hairy.

Right now, only the person actually submitting the paper online is the one who has the access to the process - and thus to the uploading of author versions and ability to mark things 'Complete' (which sets the next step in motion).

To avoid the problem of erasure or conflict, the access would really need to be parallel, not identical - i.e. there'd be 2 'author lines' for everything. Author 1 copyedit, Author 2 copyedit, etc.

And that sort of defeats the whole co-authored paradigm ultimately anyway - they are supposed to give us their combined, agreed-upon final product. It's not our job really to come back and re-combine their efforts at the editing stage.

It's just the status on our end that I'd want to be sure both/all authors are aware of.

For example, we use the 'copyedit' stage to do a final editor's comments/revisions/approval round. This means the final product revised after review goes to the chief editors for our final approval. (Then to proofreading/layout.)

So I'd want to know that both authors got my final approval email, or my directions for final revisions if I needed some done. I can't help how they work out who does what to upload those revisions (because only one has that ability) but at least both are in our loop & informed.

So maybe this is really an email address-tag issue rather than a process issue. The workaround for now is to remind my section eds to cc all co-authors; but the point here is that everything's as automatic and optimal as possible, so they don't have to remember, it's all ready to go.

Thanks for discussing this!
arachne
 
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Postby asmecher » Mon May 28, 2007 4:28 pm

Hi arachne,

See http://pkp.sfu.ca/bugzilla/show_bug.cgi?id=2889 for a patch. This will be released with OJS 2.2.

Regards,
Alec Smecher
Public Knowledge Project Team
---
Don't miss the First International PKP Scholarly Publishing Conference
July 11 - 13, 2007, Vancouver, BC, Canada
http://ocs.sfu.ca/pkp2007/
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