Publishing is a highly dynamic world, and The Journal of Experimental Biology is always at the forefront of modern publishing innovations. Over the years, the journal has developed a reputation for rapid peer review and publication, and, in keeping with current developments in publishing, the journal will offer even more publishing alternatives to the biological community from January 2004.

As a `not for profit' company, JEB's publisher, The Company of Biologists, is estimated to save scientists almost $1.5 million from their budgets every year through free publication, as well as funding travel grants for younger scientists and grants to scientific societies and organisations. The Company of Biologists also contributes to the HINARI initiative, where institutions in 120 less-developed countries can activate free institutional subscriptions to the JEB and other Company of Biologists journals,making the JEB's research available to scientists working in some of the world's most deprived nations.

Our experienced team of editors works closely with authors, ensuring that only work of the highest quality is published in the JEB. Once accepted, authors are not confronted with page charges, the journal offers free colour reproduction, and corresponding authors receive free reprints of their paper after publication. With the `online' revolution, publishing has moved into a higher gear, with rapid online publication and networked articles courtesy of HighWire Press. The publishing revolution has made it possible for proactive publishers to develop even more variations on the publishing theme,and The Company of Biologists is no exception.

From January 2004, the JEB is making it even easier to access the most current research as soon as it is published. Authors will be offered two alternative publishing routes. The first alternative will allow authors to publish their papers with `open access', making the work freely available to all internet users from the moment of publication. Authors choosing to take advantage of open access will pay a subsidised fee of £500($800/€750) for publication of their work. In parallel, the journal will continue offering its well-established publication policy for authors that wish to publish their work for free. So, when your next accepted paper is ready for submission to the JEB, you'll have a choice, either to publish your paper completely free of charge, with access restricted to subscribers for the first six months of publication, or to pay the equivalent of £500 to give instant access to the public and your peers. This hybrid publishing model will be available for a trial period of one year, allowing authors to choose the mode of publication that suits them best. For payment details, please see inside the journal's back cover.

The journal is also acting on the issue of copyright transfer. JEBwill no longer ask authors to transfer the copyright for their work to The Company of Biologists. Instead, the journal will begin publishing research under a licence agreement. Authors will retain their copyright but licence The Company of Biologists to publish and disseminate the results of their research. Under the new licence agreement, authors will be free to reuse their own material, as well as posting PDF versions of their JEBpublications on their websites, while the journal will archive each paper digitally, ensuring that it is stored safely and is accessible to readers.

And finally, the point at which JEB content will become freely available is changing. Historically, The Company of Biologists released the journal's content, from subscription to free access, at the end of each calendar year. From January 2004, content will be released six months after publication. So anyone visiting the journal's website will be able to freely access all of the content that is more than six months old.

With so many new innovations coming in at the beginning of 2004, the journal is cementing its position at the forefront of academic publishing,working to ensure that it maintains the high standards that have always been a hallmark of the JEB. We think that you'll agree that `times they are a changing', but, at JEB, they're `a changing' for the good.