Open Access News

News from the open access movement

Wednesday, September 01, 2004

Two from Online magazine

The Sept/Oct issue of Online features some OA-related articles which are not available on the magazine's website. Peter Jacso reviews three search utilities in his Picks and Pans column (p.57), and calls Citebase Search "the crown jewel of the Open Citation Project," noting its facility in searching open access sources such as arXiv, cogprints, and BioMed Central. He has high regard for the Institute of Physics (IoP) archive search interface, but dismisses Google's interface for searching scholarly archives (consisting of material from nine scientific publishers,) determining that "duplicates and triplicates were very common in many of Google's results, so its reported hits must be discounted ..." He concludes with the suggestion that scientists not rely on Google for searching this kind of material, given its "half-hearted implementation" of its interface to these archives.

Roger Strouse's "The Changing Face of Content Users and the Impact on Information Providers" (p.27) presents results from an Outsell survey. Among the findings Strouse includes is a section "Social Publishing, Information Sharing, and Open Access," which mentions file-sharing, networking among academics and scientists, collaborative software, blogs, wikis, media "that bypass the traditional publishing establishment altogether." He goes on to summarize challenges by scientists and libraries to traditional publishers, and concludes:

Librarians in academic institutions can become leaders with regard to open access initiatives by educating authors about alternative publishing venues, while at the same time continuing to push commercial vendors to develop more palatable pricing. For their part, vendors must do a better job of justifying their prices, and communicating directly to scientists (and librarians) the value they add to the publication process.