Blogged by Dan Morgan, Publisher, Collabra on 28 Sept 2015.
To me, volunteering your time means forgoing payment for your time. But how is this affected when someone else is cashing in on your time instead? My experience of volunteering my time over the years has tended to be for some event or other, often a fundraising activity, for charity, or maybe educational outreach. Importantly for this post, though, is that I am fairly sure I have never volunteered my time but then had a 3rd party charge a commercial, profit-generating price for it.
In the industry that is scholarly communication, notions of journal or content brands, as much as they are claimed and protected by publishers, are only ever created and maintained in partnership with the editors and reviewers who handle the editorial functions at the journal — who enable the creation of a product which, in the subscription model, can be sold. But the point of this post is that this is a different kind of volunteering — when someone else is commercially charging for your services, and improving their brand via your services.