Archive for the 'Publishing' Category

Taylor & Francis Open Access Survey June 2014

Posted in Open Access, Publishing, Scholarly Journals on July 1st, 2014

Taylor & Francis has released the Taylor & Francis Open Access Survey June 2014.

Here's an excerpt from the announcement:

In the first few months of 2014 Taylor & Francis carried out a worldwide survey, with the aim of exploring journal authors' views on open access.

Having previously conducted a survey on open access in 2013, we have been able to see how authors' opinions have developed, and whether the discussion and debate on open access has helped to inform and shape views.

Digital Scholarship | "A Quarter-Century as an Open Access Publisher"

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    "The Subversive Proposal at 20"

    Posted in Open Access, Publishing, Scholarly Journals, Self-Archiving on July 1st, 2014

    Richard Poynder has published "The Subversive Proposal at 20" in Open and Shut?

    Here's an excerpt:

    Twenty years ago yesterday, cognitive scientist Stevan Harnad posted a message on a mailing list, a message he headed "A Subversive Proposal." This called on all researchers to make copies of the papers they published in scholarly journals freely available on the Internet. . . .

    To celebrate the 20th anniversary of the Subversive Proposal, I emailed Harnad nine questions yesterday. These questions are published below, with Harnad's answers attached.

    Digital Scholarship | "A Quarter-Century as an Open Access Publisher"

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      "Measuring the Broader Impact of Research: The Potential of Altmetrics"

      Posted in Publishing, Scholarly Metrics on June 30th, 2014

      Lutz Bornmann has self-archived "Measuring the Broader Impact of Research: The Potential of Altmetrics."

      Here's an excerpt:

      Today, it is not clear how the impact of research on other areas of society than science should be measured. While peer review and bibliometrics have become standard methods for measuring the impact of research in science, there is not yet an accepted framework within which to measure societal impact. Alternative metrics (called altmetrics to distinguish them from bibliometrics) are considered an interesting option for assessing the societal impact of research, as they offer new ways to measure (public) engagement with research output. Altmetrics is a term to describe web-based metrics for the impact of publications and other scholarly material by using data from social media platforms (e.g. Twitter or Mendeley). This overview of studies explores the potential of altmetrics for measuring societal impact. It deals with the definition and classification of altmetrics. Furthermore, their benefits and disadvantages for measuring impact are discussed.

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        "Can Libraries Help Stop this Madness?"

        Posted in Publishing, Scholarly Journals, University Presses on June 27th, 2014

        Kevin L. Smith has published "Can Libraries Help Stop this Madness?" in Library Journal.

        Here's an excerpt:

        If university presses can make a successful transition to less-expensive digital publishing, we should support that transition as fully as we can, but we should withhold funds where the digital product reflects the high prices and other inefficiencies mandated by print.

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          "The Determinants of Open Access Publishing: Survey Evidence from Countries in the Mediterranean Open Access Network (MedOANet)"

          Posted in Open Access, Publishing, Self-Archiving on June 26th, 2014

          Thomas Eger et al. have self-archived "The Determinants of Open Access Publishing: Survey Evidence from Countries in the Mediterranean Open Access Network (MedOANet)."

          Here's an excerpt:

          We discuss the results of a survey conducted between April 2013 and May 2014 in six Mediterranean countries and covering 2,528 researchers from Spain (1,291), Portugal (142), France (380), Italy (596), Turkey (131) and Greece (130). We compare the results to our German survey with 1,913 respondents. We show that there are significant differences between the scientific disciplines with respect to researcher's awareness of and experience with both open access (OA) journals and self-archiving. Accordingly, the publishing culture (e.g. reputation, publishing language) but also other issues like age and certain policies (MedOANet) may explain why researchers make more frequent use of OA publishing in some countries and disciplines.

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            "The Price of Big Science: Saturation or Abundance in Scientific Publishing?"

            Posted in Publishing, Scholarly Communication, Scholarly Journals on June 25th, 2014

            Caroline S. Wagner and Dae Joong Kim have published "The Price of Big Science: Saturation or Abundance in Scientific Publishing?" in Policy and Complex Systems.

            Here's an excerpt:

            The rate of production of scientific publications appears to be continuing on an exponential growth curve against the prediction of Derek de Solla Price. (This article examines only publications, but it has been noted that scientific data (Borgman, Wallis, and Enyedy 2007) and e-Science (Hey and Trefethen 2005) are also growing phenomena, as well.) The growth of scientific publications has many possible causes, but the system itself appears to be operating efficiently. The networked nature of global science (Wagner and Leydesdorff 2005), the expansion of source materials and venues, the expansion of the practice of science to new places, the application of science to new problems (such as climate change), and the rise of China as a scientific power all may be contributing to the very rapid growth in output, increasing the complexity of the system.

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              "The Multidimensional Assessment of Scholarly Research Impact"

              Posted in Publishing, Scholarly Journals, Scholarly Metrics on June 24th, 2014

              Henk F. Moed and Gali Halevi have self-archived "The Multidimensional Assessment of Scholarly Research Impact."

              Here's an excerpt:

              This article introduces the Multidimensional Research Assessment Matrix of scientific output. Its base notion holds that the choice of metrics to be applied in a research assessment process depends upon the unit of assessment, the research dimension to be assessed, and the purposes and policy context of the assessment. An indicator may by highly useful within one assessment process, but less so in another. For instance, publication counts are useful tools to help discriminating between those staff members who are research active, and those who are not, but are of little value if active scientists are to be compared one another according to their research performance. This paper gives a systematic account of the potential usefulness and limitations of a set of 10 important metrics including altmetrics, applied at the level of individual articles, individual researchers, research groups and institutions. It presents a typology of research impact dimensions, and indicates which metrics are the most appropriate to measure each dimension. It introduces the concept of a meta-analysis of the units under assessment in which metrics are not used as tools to evaluate individual units, but to reach policy inferences regarding the objectives and general setup of an assessment process.

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                A Quarter-Century as an Open Access Publisher

                Posted in Bibliographies, Digital Scholarship Publications, Open Access, Publishing, Scholarly Books, Scholarly Communication, Scholarly Journals, Social Media/Web 2.0 on June 23rd, 2014

                Introduction

                Twenty-five years? It's hard to believe I've been doing this since Madonna's "Express Yourself" was in the top 40. I don't typically write about personal matters in DigitalKoans, but here's a mini-memoir, so please indulge me.

                Here are the highlights of my open access publishing activities since June 1989. A full chronology is also available.

                PACS-L and the The Public-Access Computer Systems Review

                Twenty-five years ago I went to the ALA Annual Conference and passed out a few leaflets announcing the Public-Access Computer Systems Forum (PACS-L), a LISTSERV list intended to foster discussion on the then-revolutionary idea that library users could access digital information themselves instead of submitting database search requests to librarians. At the time, PCs were being used to provide access to databases on CD-ROMs and some avant-garde libraries were providing access to "locally-mounted databases" on minicomputers. In 1989, librarians were reading papers such as "Library Applications of CD-ROM"; "Loading Local Machine-Readable Data Files: Issues, Problems, and Answers"; and my "Public-Access Computer Systems: The Next Generation of Library Automation Systems."

                I was particularly interested in the emergence of public-access computer systems because the University of Houston, where I worked as the library's Assistant Director for Systems, had a President who envisioned a bold new age of digital information access. One of my first tasks when I a took the job in 1987 was to flesh-out, in a couple of weeks, the details of this vision for a very substantial grant proposal. By the summer of 1989, I had spent a considerable amount of time reviewing the literature on "electronic publishing" and grappling with how to make the potential real. The library's visionary director, Robin N. Downes, was very supportive of my starting PACS-L (and of my subsequent digital publishing efforts at UH).

                My expectations at ALA were modest; however, the timing was right and PACS-L was one of the first lists to focus on a broad topic rather than a single library automation system. Moreover, PACS-L soon morphed into a list that dealt with the nascent Internet and its implications for libraries and electronic publishing. Consequently, it grew rapidly, and, within a year, had over 1,400 subscribers (at its peak, it had over 10,000 subscribers).

                In this uber-interactive age, it is difficult to convey the early excitement that the development of this new digital community held, especially as it became more international. In short order, I began to consider the possibility of launching an e-journal, and I floated the idea on PACS-L.

                Although the technological infrastructure of the time was primitive at best, on August 16, 1989, I announced the The Public-Access Computer Systems Review, an e-journal whose articles would be distributed as ASCII text files using a LISTSERV server. Here's an excerpt from the announcement:

                The Public-Access Computer Systems Review will contain short articles (1 to 7 single-spaced pages), columns, and reviews. PACS Review will cover all computer systems that libraries make available to their patrons, including CAI and ICAI programs, CD-ROM databases, expert systems, hypermedia systems, information delivery systems, local databases, online catalogs, and remote end-user search systems. All types of short communications dealing with these subjects are welcome. Articles that present innovative projects in libraries, even those at an early stage of their development, are especially welcome. Proposals for regular (or irregular) columns will be considered on an ongoing basis. There will be a section for reviews of books, journal articles, reports, and software.

                A call for papers was issued in October, and the first issue was announced in January 1990. The journal became peer-reviewed in November 1991.

                Starting with its first issue, The Public-Access Computer Systems Review was freely available, allowed noncommercial use, and allowed authors to retain their copyrights. There was no established theoretical or legal context for doing so. The concept of "open access" wouldn't be articulated until the Budapest Open Access Initiative declaration in February 2002, and the Creative Commons wouldn't release its first license until December 2002.

                Needless to say, the journal was product of many hands, including its hardworking editorial staff, its very engaged editorial board, its risk-taking authors, and its columnists.

                From 1994 through 2005 (the only years that data is available), The Public-Access Computer Systems Review had over 3.5 million file requests.

                In the early 1990s, I also cofounded and coedited Public-Access Computer Systems News, which published short news items, and founded and moderated the PACS-P list, which announced new e-serials issues for publications such as Current Cites.

                The Public-Access Computer Systems Review and Public-Access Computer Systems News are preserved in the Internet Archive. The University of Houston has a partial archive of the The Public-Access Computer Systems Review (only ASCII versions of articles, not the HTML website or HTML versions of articles published from 1995 onwards) and a complete archive of Public-Access Computer Systems News. After the University of Houston deleted the PACS-L archive in 2013, it is no longer publicly available.

                For more details about PACS-L and The Public-Access Computer Systems Review, see:

                Scholarly Electronic Publishing Bibliography

                The Scholarly Electronic Publishing Bibliography evolved out of three bibliographies about "electronic publishing on networks" that I published in The Public-Access Computer Systems Review. I was motivated to write them because it was difficult to track this emerging trend using conventional indexes, and I thought that making this information more accessible would foster the further development of digital publishing.

                The final bibliography in this series, "Network-Based Electronic Publishing of Scholarly Works: A Selective Bibliography," was the result of an experimental publishing strategy that I tried in the journal: the option for authors to update their articles. This article was updated 26 times between March 1995 and October 1996.

                By its final version, the bibliography had outgrown the article format, and I transformed it into an electronic book: the Scholarly Electronic Publishing Bibliography. Since the literature never stopped changing, I decided that the book wouldn't either: it would be updated periodically. And so it was: 80 times from October 1996 through October 2011. Always freely available, I put it under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial License in July 2004.

                Over the course of its evolution, it was distributed as PDF files, printed books, a website, and Word files. By the time the last print version was published in early 2011, it was over 460 pages long. Along the way, a directory of related resources ("Scholarly Electronic Publishing Resources, which was published from 2000 though 2009) and a weblog that listed new works (the Scholarly Electronic Publishing Weblog, which was published from 2001 through 2013) were added to the bibliography.

                The Scholarly Electronic Publishing Bibliography is archived at Digital Scholarship and the Internet Archive. The University of Houston Libraries no longer maintains an archive of the e-book.

                From October 1996 through December 2005, the Scholarly Electronic Publishing Bibliography had over 5.5 million file requests.

                For more information about the Scholarly Electronic Publishing Bibliography, see:

                Digital Scholarship

                By 2005, I felt that the technological infrastructure had evolved to the point where it was feasible for a single individual to perform all the functions of a digital publisher, and I established my own open access digital press, Digital Scholarship. As you know, it provides information and commentary about digital copyright, digital curation, digital repositories, open access, scholarly communication, and other digital information issues. Its publications are under versions of the Creative Commons Attribution or Attribution-Noncommercial Licenses. I also established DigitalKoans that year to provide timely coverage of those topics.

                In November 2006, I resigned my position as Assistant Dean for Digital Library Planning and Development at the University of Houston Libraries, and I migrated the Scholarly Electronic Publishing Bibliography to Digital Scholarship.

                Until 2009, Digital Scholarship only published digital works. In May of that year, I published the Scholarly Electronic Publishing Bibliography: 2008 Annual Edition as a low-cost paperback with an open access digital version.

                To date, Digital Scholarship has published the following works:

                Not unexpectedly, the most popular books, aside from the Scholarly Electronic Publishing Bibliography, have been those about open access:

                • Open Access Bibliography: Liberating Scholarly Literature with E-Prints and Open Access Journals: 0ver 627,000 file requests.
                • Transforming Scholarly Publishing through Open Access: A Bibliography: Over 637,000 file requests.

                During the time it was published by Digital Scholarship, all digital versions of the Scholarly Electronic Publishing Bibliography had over 7.1 million file requests, bringing the total number of file requests to over 12.6 million.

                From April 2005 through May 2014, Digital Scholarship had over 13.7 million visitors from 230 counties and over 66.8 million file requests.

                By analyzing Digital Scholarship log data with Weblog Expert, it is possible to separate out spider requests, to break out page views (a page view would be for a Epub, HTM, HTML, PDF, text, or Word file), to determine the number of unique IPs, and to gauge bandwidth use.

                Here's the breakdown for the same period:

                • Total file requests: Over 66.8 million
                • Spider file requests: Over 26.2 million (about 39% of file requests)
                • Total page views: Over 47.7 million (about 71% of file requests)
                • Total unique IPs: 1.4 million
                • Total bandwidth: Over 1,700 GB

                Conclusion

                In the age of Google, bibliographies may seem antiquated. Digital Scholarship's use data argues otherwise. Certainly, the scholarly information that users are seeking is typically on search engines, but extracting it can be a time-consuming and vexing process. For example, in the early days of the open access movement, Google search results for this topic were replete with papers about surgical procedures, restricted access to beaches, and other false drops.

                My publishing efforts have been driven by advocacy. I write to foster the development of causes that I care about. I hope that my contributions have had a positive impact on them.

                As to the future of Digital Scholarship, I haven't taken a lengthy publishing vacation in 25 years, so it may be time for a sabbatical. I've become increasingly involved in creating digital art, and that taking up more of my time. We'll see.

                Preservation-wise, I've put the major works in the Internet Archive, but, as an individual unaffiliated with a university, can't do much beyond that. As you would imagine, I have extensive digital work files and publication use data dating from the dawn of open access, but I'm not sure how to archive them.

                So, onward, and, hopefully, upward. Thanks for your interest and support over the last quarter-century.

                And a special thanks to the The Public-Access Computer Systems Review editorial staff, editorial board, and columnists:

                Editor-in-Chiefs

                • Pat Ensor (1997-2000)
                • Thomas C. Wilson (1997-2000)

                Editors:

                • Leslie Dillon, Associate Editor (1990) and Associate Editor, Columns (1991-1997)
                • Elizabeth A. Dupuis, Associate Editor, Columns (1997-2000)
                • John E. Fadell, Copy Editor (1998-2000)
                • Andrea Bean Hough, Associate Editor, Communications (1997-2000)
                • Mike Ridley, Associate Editor (1989-1990) and Associate Editor, Reviews (1991)
                • Dana Rooks, Associate Editor, Communications (1991-1997)
                • Robert Spragg, Associate Editor, Technical Support (1996-2000)
                • Roy Tennant, Associate Editor, Reviews (1992-1993)
                • Ann Thornton, Associate Editor, Production (1995-2000)

                Editorial Board:

                • Ralph Alberico (1992-2000)
                • George H. Brett II (1992-2000)
                • Priscilla Caplan (1994-2000)
                • Steve Cisler (1992-2000)
                • Walt Crawford (1989-2000)
                • Lorcan Dempsey (1992-2000)
                • Pat Ensor (1994-1996)
                • Nancy Evans (1989-2000)
                • Stephen Harter (1997-2000)
                • Charles Hildreth (1992-2000)
                • Ronald Larsen (1992-2000)
                • Clifford Lynch (1992-2000)
                • David R. McDonald (1989-2000)
                • R. Bruce Miller (1989-2000)
                • Ann Okerson (1997-2000)
                • Paul Evan Peters (1989-1996)
                • Mike Ridley (1992-2000)
                • Peggy Seiden (1995-2000)
                • Peter Stone (1989-2000)
                • John E. Ulmschneider (1992-2000)

                Columnists

                • Priscilla Caplan (1992-1998)
                • Walt Crawford (1989-1995)
                • Martin Halbert (1990-1993)

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