The journals were set up by Emil O. W. Kirkegaard and Davide Piffer due to dissatisfaction with journals in the areas of differential psychology and behavioral genetics. These journals were all closed access, owned by Elsevier and used traditional reviewing practices.
After discussion, a set of common journal features were agreed upon:
- Open access - everybody can read the published material.
- Authors retain rights - whatever copyrights authors had before, they keep; granting only the rights for OpenPsych to publish the papers online as well as to search indexers to index the publications.
- No author fees - running journal websites is cheap and fees are unnecessary.
- Open forum peer review - traditional peer review is anachronistic and does not take advance of modern technology (graphical explanation below).
- Mandatory data sharing - so that others can verify and extend your results as well as use the data for other purposes you didn't think of.